Among numerous academic assignments some have the reputation of coming with higher costs to students. When the traditional essay or a test would require several hours of work, such advanced tasks as research paper take lots of time and efforts. Many students fear the time when they go to a class demanding a research paper. The popular fear is that the paper is a hyper-complicated scientific job achievable by the greatest minds only. But with good knowledge of the requirements, few lifehacks, and discipline, virtually anyone could produce a qualitative research paper. Let’s have a look at most important steps to take when writing a research paper to get the best grade.
- Invest Time in Research
The easiest papers to write are those you can write with your own thoughts and knowledge, no library digging needed. Those essays require more of your pre-existing expertise and opinions rather than contribution to science or bringing new ideas into academic community. The latter is exactly what’s expected from the research papers. For students, it usually means much more concentrated work, exploring the sources, active reading and analyzing, etc. Often, students need some advice to do this properly as many advanced-level skills are necessary to succeed. It is not a surprise that many students apply to the best research paper writing services in usa exactly for research papers when having insufficient time to do all the heavy work needed.
Few tips to make the research phase effective and less painful:
- Plan the scope of your research before start
- Define methods of your research that would be feasible for you to complete
- Decide whether you’re prepared and possess necessary resources to conduct some time-consuming data collection
- Find the desirable literature items online and go hunting them with a specific list of titles to save energy
- Make a literature review even if not required by the paper outline – compose summaries, save quotes, and references
Such an approach to research allows you to be well-prepared and identify problems, tendencies, and valuable sources before you even start writing.
- Start With the Outline
This advice is reasonable for most academic writing pieces as helps a lot with the writing process. When your research is completed, you’d probably have many notes and good source to refer to, but also too many facts to discuss. It would make your writing fuzzy and incoherent, if transferred as is from your head on a paper.
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The smart approach would be to draft a structure of your future research paper and supplement it with qualitative findings from your research. Assign the quotes and references from those sources to specific sections of the paper. This way, you’ll have a nice logical narrative plan that delivers to the goals of your paper. It would also makes the process of writing much easier.
- Craft Your Thesis Statement
Few things in academic writing are so crucial both for the content quality, and for following of the formal requirements as the use and proper formulation of the thesis statement for your research paper. Thesis statement presents the goal of your research and the question you plan to answer in your paper. Why is it so important?
First, the thesis statement guides you as a researcher and author of the paper through your work. Keeping its very objective in focus helps stick to the narrative you’ve started and follow the logic in your text. As the thesis statement is usually provided at the end of introduction, so it should be comprehensively addressed and answered by the conclusion of the paper.
Second, for a paper to have a goal is a minimum reasonable requirement for any academic work. If your professor wouldn’t find it, your grade would be significantly lowered. Thus, it is very important to formulate your thesis statement as clearly as possible and not spread it over several sentences or paragraphs.
Fit your thesis statement in one sentence with concise language and no filler words. It would be visible, concrete, and easy to find for marking and understanding of the purpose of your work.
- Don’t Forget About Formalities
The best ideas and well-chosen sources might get pushed to the sides, if a paper has lots of minor shortcomings. We talk about language errors, formatting issues, and incorrect citations. Actually, depending on the professor and a college you’re studying at, the violations of formal requirements may be quite a serious problem.
Students should consider research papers as something as close to ‘real science’ as possible. Hence, the bar for quality is very high. It means that before submitting your paper you should always check it for the following:
- Paper is proofread, there are no spelling or punctuation mistakes
- Formatting is observed, text is properly aligned, spaced, and titled
- You’ve used correct citation style both for in-text references and the bibliography
- All unconventional requirements of your professor taken into account
Such details may seem less important, but they could spoil the impression from your paper, and alienate strict professors before they even get to reading it.
Diligent preparation and good knowledge of the research paper elements and requirements guarantee that you’ll manage to complete such assignment successfully. Rely on sticking to valid sources, keep an eye on formal requirements and you’ll get the professor’s positive feedback for sure.