Although it may seem easy to write a research paper, the actual process of writing such a paper is often a recursive and messy one. That’s why it is useful to find out some tips how to write a good research paper. There are some logical stages which you should follow to make your research paper an outstanding piece of writing. You can use this short overview as a flexible guide.
Remember that in order to gain the goal and to submit the excellent research paper, you should do something more than just using your knowledge. Always believe in yourself, be positive and use the tips of professionals. This can become a good start of a writing process. Then you should structure your work on it and follow the stages. For some students, it’s easier to order the research paper from professionals. But if you want to do it by yourself, you should follow the main steps of the writing process. You can find them in this article. Use them and your teachers will be surprised how professional your research paper is.
Stage 1. The Topic Choice
It is really a big deal. You should choose the topic which will be interesting to you and challenging. Your interest in the topic which you choose will determine your enthusiasm and efforts. If you are excited about your topic, you will definitely devote more time and put more efforts into the research paper.
Some tips on this step:
- Choose the topic you can cope with and avoid topics which are too complicated for you, for example, some technical subjects; choose the field which is interesting to you;
- Don’t choose the wide topic, the aspect you are looking for should be narrow. For example, you can narrow the topic from “Philosophy” to “Existential philosophy”;
- Don’t make a full-scale investigation until you get the approval of your teacher;
- Don’t be afraid to ask the questions. If you are not sure of what the teacher expects of you or you have some questions about the assignment, it’s better to ask before writing.
Stage 2. Search for Information
It is the second thing you should know about writing a good research paper. Start from surfing the web. Get the general information on the topic you are going to speak about. Check out encyclopedias, online periodicals, useful web pages, some general information portals, online libraries, like Wall Street Executive Library. Now you should use effective web search engines. There are domains which can give you reliable and accurate information. They have the next extensions:
- .edu - websites of different educational institutions;
- .gov - government web pages;
- .org - pages of non-profit organizations.
Beware of possible problems associated with political bias when you search for information on government websites. You can also find books online. Use Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC) for this purpose.
After searching the web, you should check out printed materials which are available in your school, public or university library. You may check:
- AV Catalogs;
- Government Publications and Reports;
- Newspapers and Magazines, etc.
You should not only read but also evaluate the information. Don’t forget to bookmark your favorite website or take some notes.
Stage 3. Thesis Statements of the Research Paper
Every research paper you submit must have the main point, a central message or the main idea. All the arguments which you use in your research paper have to reflect the main idea that you want to bring to the audience. The thesis statement is the sentence that captures your own author position on the main idea of the research paper.
So you should think critically and write down your own thesis in the single sentence. It must be clear and undeniable. When you write a research paper, you give your thesis statement as a special declaration of author’s belief. Then support your thesis statement with the arguments. To write a successful thesis statement, you should:
- Be as clear and as it possible and avoid any vague words;
- Avoid burying your thesis statement in the middle of a paragraph.
Stage 4. Write an Outline
Outlining is a crucial part of the writing process. All parts of the research paper have to reflect its major idea. The main purpose of the outline is to organize the information and your thoughts logically before the writing. You’ll see that thanks to the outline your arguments line up in a logical sequence. So an effective outline is one of the most important stages in the writing process. You should include the next mandatory parts to your outline:
- Body part;
Stage 5. Make and Organize the Notes
At this stage, you should organize the information which you’ve gathered in accordance with the outline of your assignment. Analyze the results of your research critically. Always check for adequacy and accuracy, verify the facts and statistical information, correct it if needed. Now you have to synthesize, analyze, digest and sort the gathered information.
Stage 6. Write a Draft of the Research Paper
Drafting is one of the last but not least stages. Start from the very beginning of your research paper. Use quotes if needed to enhance some ideas, summarize the arguments in the favor of your statements. You can use your prospectus and outline as flexible guides.
After the body is written, write the conclusion. It must be a quintessence of the main ideas of your research paper and lead the reader to the possibility of drawing a conclusion on his own.
Stage 7. Revising the Draft
You should check the overall organization of the research paper and its logical flow. Read attentively the introduction, check the depth of discussion and coherence of the ideas in a body part, the persuasiveness and effectiveness of conclusion. Remember that topic sentences and ideas within paragraphs must be consistent with the main idea of the research paper. Use facts and statistics to support generalizations. If you order the assignment, check it for plagiarism.
Stage 8. The Final Printing
The final stage of the process is the typing of the final paper. At this stage you can be proud of yourself, you’ve achieved your goal.
In our opinion, the stages that are named in the article represent the best way to move through the writing process. They reflect the process of thinking, developing a research and writing. But if you still don’t feel confident in your writing skills, you may ask for the help of professionals here.