What is a Research Paper

A research paper can best be defined as a substantial piece of academic writing. A research paper can be undertaken by two types of people, a student and author. Both of these parties have to do independent research on a topic, and thereafter document the findings of that research in a paper, thus called a research paper. The difference between the two is that the student does a research paper in order to satisfy the requirements of a class, while an author does a research paper out of his/her own ambitions.

In order to formulate a good research paper, there are several guidelines or steps that one should use. The first step in writing a research paper is to brainstorm for a good topic. A good topic for a research paper is one that you can easily find information on, and one that is not too broad. For e.g. choosing a research topic called Ghana maybe too broad, therefore a topic such

as                                                                                                                                   Ghana’s culture is a better choice.

After deciding on the topic for your research paper, you’re ready for your next step, which is making an outline. The purpose of an outline is to put your ideas about the topic on paper, in a moderately organized format. The outline will make the task of writing your research paper more simple as you will already have your ideas on paper, and all you will need to do is expand on them.

After writing an outline, you are now ready to write a thesis statement, which is the third step of writing a research paper. A thesis statement tells the reader what the essay will be about, and what point you, the author, will be making. After your thesis statement, you need to come up with an introduction.

What is a Research Paper

An introduction is designed to attract the reader’s attention and give an idea of the focus of your research paper. A good introduction is important in a research paper as it helps to keep a readers’ attention to your paper. It is important therefore that you start your introduction with an attention grabber, something that grabs your reader’s attention. An attention grabber can be a good quote or story.

After writing your introduction, it’s time for you to write a main body. All the preparation up to this point comes to fruition in the main body of your research paper. The topic you chose must now be explained, described, or argued in the best way possible. The points you made in your outline are the ones you will now elaborate on, in order to produce a main body. Your main body should be full of great content, so as to expound your readers’ knowledge on your topic.

After successful completion of the main body of your research paper, you’re now ready to write a conclusion. A conclusion should bring closure to your reader, so it therefore needs to have a summary of your main points, and a final perspective on your topic. A conclusion should have three or four strong sentences which basically review the main points of your research paper, and describes your feelings about your topic.

After writing your conclusion, you need to move on to the next step, which is citation. A citation is a reference to a published or unpublished source. The purpose of a citation is to give is intellectual honesty and acknowledgment of the works of other authors included in your research paper. There are many different citations to choose from depending on your preference or if you’re a student your lecturers preference. Below is a list of citations, which one can use.

– APA:   psychology, education, and other social sciences.

– MLA:   literature, arts, and humanities.

– AMA:   medicine, health, and biological sciences.

– Turabian:   designed for college students to use with all subjects.

– Chicago: used with all subjects in the "real world" by books, magazines, newspapers, and other non-scholarly publications.

What is a Research Paper

The final step in a research paper is a spell and grammar check. This is where you peruse through your paper in order to identify mistakes you might have made in your writing process. This is a very important step in writing a research paper, and it should never be skipped.

In conclusion, a research paper is a good undertaking as it helps expand the knowledge the world has on different subjects. If the steps and guidelines I have given above are followed by one who is writing a research paper, success is ensured!