Medical & Scientific WritingScientific Writing Courses

How to Write a Basic Research Paper: 10 Easy Steps

How to write a basic research paper is a question asked very often by students and researchers. A lot of guidance is available on the internet but not in a simplified manner. Here we present to you 10 simple steps to write a research paper:

# 1. Choosing Your Topic:

This can be the most difficult part of doing a research paper. If you are given a list from which to choose, of course pick the one that speaks to you the most. If you must come up with a topic on your own, it can be more challenging. The Internet can be a great resource for choosing a topic. Search for your general subject, and then narrow it down by going deeper and deeper into it. For instance a search for geography will net 167,000,000 results. Scan the titles of the articles until you see something that piques your interest and then search that topic. Just keep doing this until you have found the basis for your paper.

# 2. Collecting Data:

This is the Information Age, so there is no excuse for not finding enough on which to write a paper. Libraries are still available with more resources than ever before. The Internet is the world at your fingertips. Believe it or not, there are still encyclopedias for just this type of project. The excuse of “I couldn’t find anything on the topic” won’t fly any more.

# 3. Begin Writing:

Sometimes it can be tricky to get started. You have your topic and information and now you have to put them together into some kind of order that is interesting and informative. The first thing to do would be to make a list of your heading and subheadings. You know you will have an introduction, the body and then the conclusion. This is the format of your paper. The introduction will include your thesis statement. This is what your paper is based on. The body of your paper will provide the information to back up your thesis statement. The conclusion will restate your thesis statement.

# 4. Organizing your Data:

In this step you will note all the information you want to include in your paper. If you have written out the points you want to make, and have the supporting data, it is time to insert this information under the appropriate subheading.

# 5. Filling the Body of Your Paper:

So far you have created your outline and collected your pertinent data. You will now want to put it all together in an orderly fashion. Be aware of your sentence structure. Each paragraph is like a mini research paper. The opening sentence is like your thesis statement. It is followed by your supporting evidence, and then your last sentence will usually transition into your next sentence. You want your paper to have a natural flow. Each paragraph will merge seamlessly into the next.

# 6. Read Your Paper:

You are now the editor. Read very carefully. Check for spelling, grammar and flow. Correct any mistakes.

# 7. It is Time for the Final Draft:

This is your neat copy. Take extra time to make sure the spacing is even, the margins look correct and that it is pleasing to the eye. Read it again for any last minute changes. Once it is handed in you cannot change it.

# 8. Include a Bibliography:

It is very important to reference the sources of your research. Do it properly. Find out what the required format is for your instructor. Otherwise, check usual formats online or at the library.

# 9. Make Your Title Page and Table of Contents:

The title page is for the name of your paper, your name and your instructor’s name. You may also put the date. The table of contents will have your headings and subheadings with page numbers. Include your bibliography and any glossary of terms, or appendices.

# 10. Final Review and Read Through:

On completion of the above steps, do a final read through and visual check. Go over your topic and research to make sure you have included everything you have intended and that your information is correct and it flows naturally. Hand it in.

Congratulations. You are finished.

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