Did you ever wonder if you will ever follow a wrong research paper format considering there are a lot of them you need to consider? It would surely depend on the field you are writing your research for and on the requirement of the affiliated academic institution, as well as the originality of your content.
Thankfully research paper guide exist to help you out with your writing. This will always tell students and professionals to say no to plagiarism and to make sure that you get your facts straight. Despite the thousands of published research paper in the world, it is still impossible to miss a plagiarized research article, especially now that the database is one click away.
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What Is Introduction in Research Paper?
The introduction section will greet you in every research paper sample you read. It is the first chapter in the anatomy of research papers that will give you the information you need. Introduction establishes what the subject matter is all about. It will lead the reader from a general topic to a more specific one while stating the significance of the research. This is the section wherein you summarize your current understanding and review of related literature regarding the topic. Introduction does not have a particular word count limit compared to the abstract. Part of this section is also introducing the research problem, the hypothesis you are trying to prove, the methodological approach you used to test the hypothesis, the expected and potential outcome of the study, and an outline of the rest of the structure of the paper. Basically, introduction answers three main questions: What is this paper all about? Why should I read it? What do you want me to think about/consider/react about after reading this?
For scientific research paper, it is described as an inverted triangle, wherein the concept explains that introduction as the part where the broadest information lies then it will progress into the specifics in the different sections of the paper.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Introduction Content
- Start with a catchy first sentence. You can use example situation, anecdotes, quotes, or fun facts to hook the reader into your paper. Of course, these attention-grabbing information should align to the research topic you are going to present.
- Introduce the topic. Make use of a good transition to introduce your topic by presenting a thesis statement from that general statement you mentioned above. The first sentences should indicate that there are specific questions or issues you will focus more closely in the later part of the paper.
- Write a definition of the key terms or major concepts. Giving brief backgrounds about the key terms and major concepts are part of the introduction because when you start your other section like Discussion, Methodology, Results, or Conclusion, the readers will be on the same page as you are. They would understand what you are referring to.
- Review of related literature. The length and information in this portion will depend on the type of paper you are writing. In scientific papers, most related literature are placed in the introduction section.
- Give the rationale of the paper. Elaborate the reasons why this paper is significant in the research field and what benefits this paper provide. Include here the strengths and importance of the paper and not just the gaps you are trying to fill in the existing scholarly articles.
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Guidelines for Preparing a Research Paper
Guidelines exist to help in organizing your contents and structure that will enable you to write an effective research paper. There are two style guides that are usually followed by the researchers—it would depend on the field and institution that the researcher is affiliated—the American Psychological Association or APA format and the modern language association or MLA format. The former is typically used in the field of social sciences and it uses “references” as the title page of the sources that were cited in the paper, while the latter is typically used in the field of humanities and uses “works cited” as the title of the sources page. Both formats uses double space for the whole paper and requires that all information cited should be listed in the sources section.
The following guidelines for preparing a research paper is applicable to whether you use APA or MLA format:
- Make sure that your paper should have the components expected in a paper: title page, abstract, introduction, methods, results, discussion, conclusions, acknowledgments, references, appendices.
- Avoid plagiarism. Rephrasing is different from paraphrasing. The former is still considered as plagiarism, so be mindful of how you get an idea of a source. Make sure that you also write citation.
- Make the complicated simple. When writing your paper, simplify the thought and the main point of the paper. Complicated writing will not make your paper more impressive and informative.
- State your thoughts clearly and strongly.
How to Write an A+ Research Paper
- Choose a topic that interests you
- Gather information and read existing literature
- Formulate a research problem
- Construct a tentative outline of the paper
- Organize the gathered information together with your notes
- Start writing your first draft
- Use transitional phrases
- List down your references and double-check your citations
- Make use of research paper example to gain more idea in the different writing styles
- Do revisions of your draft and your outline
- Type your final paper
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How to Start a Research Paper
- Have a lot of options for a topic until you decide one that interests you the most.
- Know the guidelines that are provided for your research. This is usually given by the affiliated institution.
- Consult scholarly articles to narrow down your research paper topic.
- Formulate several hypothetical statements.
- Construct your thesis in a definitive way since this statement represents the whole paper.
- Identify the primary source for information of the research topic.
- Study your sources and take notes.
- Part of the process of double-checking is evaluating whether your sources are credible.
- Write your finding interpretation.
- Make research paper outlines.
- Start your research paper.
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