This three-part article will explain the steps that will help you write a high school, college or university research paper. Research techniques and processes can differ from person to person, what works for some may not work for others. Nevertheless, when students ask how to write a research paper there is set of steps that proved to be effective and helpful.
Most college and university instructors agree that best research papers are written when a student has a personal interest in the topic. Deeply-seeded appreciation of the particular subject matter transforms into clearer thesis, a better structure, and vivid presentation. When the research paper topics are not mandatory by your instructor, you can brainstorm for research paper ideas by examining your own interests, hobbies, or future goals.
Your choice of a suitable research subject is often determined by whether or not you are interested in reading or investigating. Investigating the primary sources puts you in the role of a detective and is best paired with the subject that you have developed an intimate preference. Working with secondary sources is allows you to see the larger picture by analyzing what others have said about your topic.
The typical college paper involves the latter; you are expected to do a fair share of library research. Many students who are wondering how to write a research paper also need to be critical on the topic choice. Not only it should be interesting, it also must be suitable for college or university level. Some subjects are not worth investigating; they are too trivial, merely factual, or too routine. Others are often too new or current for a conclusive study.
After you have decided on a subject, the next step is to read a general, authoritative article from a trusted source, such as Encyclopedia Britannica. It is always best to start with an overview and then work your way down to details. Time and time again, this approach proved to be the most effective way to start writing a research paper. One of the immediate benefits of doing this is that you will immediately understand whether you want to pursue that topic or not. You will also learn what information to look for next. Look for the ideas that prompt you to ask why or how they are true or in what specific way they must be true. These ideas will provide a basis upon which you will formulate a temporary thesis and temporary outline.