Writing a research paper is neither like reading a book chapter nor working on a maths problem. Writing a paper is a frustrating activity. You can’t just open the word and start writing. You have to read thousands of books and articles before you can write. You are to perform extensive research and brainstorm. While writing a research paper, you have to deal with annoying citations and references. But here are some steps and resources you can follow to write a practical paper quickly. The following steps will help you write a good research paper.
Understand the Assignment
It is the ultimate waste of time when you are unclear about any part of the assignment. Ask your professor to explain every part of the assignment which is unclear to you. It is crucial to understand what your teacher or professor is demanding from you. Spend some good time understanding every part of your assignment.
Carefully understand the writing assignment, prompts, grading scheme, or any other material provided to you. Taking notes on the assignment is also helpful. If you are unclear or unsure about any part, consult with your supervisor or professor. That way, you will be on the right track.
Pick a Topic
Once you understand what you are being asked to write, it’s time to think about what to write about. You can use the guidelines provided by your instructor. If you have a topic of interest and it contrasts with your professor’s guidelines, skip it. It will be easier for you to write on the topic provided by your professor in the long run. You don’t have to be in love with your topic, and the topic should engage you. It would be best if you used this writing opportunity to learn something new.
Once you are familiar with your assignment and topic, it’s time to research the topic. This step is a bit flexible. Different people employ different techniques to research a topic. However, the essential thing here is to stay focused and search for relevant things about your topic. Several few things to remember as you research are;
- Skim through only relevant information
- Find reliable resources
- Don’t ignore information
First, skimming, you don’t have to read everything written on the topic. Probably you can’t read the whole topic. You have to go through the pages and gather relevant information quickly. Next, finding reliable resources, you shouldn’t start and end writing only using Wikipedia. You have to find other reliable resources as well to write effectively. Finally, don’t ignore the information. Every piece of information is helpful unless you know where to use that information.
Organize Your Research
So, you have all the information discussed above, now what’s ahead? It’s time to organize all the information you gathered on your topic. It depends on your assignment. If you are writing a book, then some bibliography helps organize your research. Recommended by a PhD dissertation help firm, it might help you to bookmark your resources in your web browser. You can also make a digital bibliography that allows you t link sources with your writing. You might prefer to take a print of what you have gathered. You may write it by hand or on sticky notes. But it is all up to you how you are going to organize your data.
Form a Thesis
When you understand what you have been asked and have gathered all the information about the chosen topic, now you are ready to give your opinion or argument. Even if you don’t want to argue, you have to write a thesis. A thesis is a short statement that you put forward to the readers of your paper.
A starting point can be answering the question: What is your paper about? You can answer, “My paper is about dogs and humans”. See, this is not so hard.
Create an Outline
Like a bibliography, your outline also depends on your assignment. Make sure that your outline is aligned with the guidelines of your professor/instructor. But if you are not instructed to write an outline, you should still make one, which will help build your research paper.
Creating an outline is like structuring your paper. It will be helpful to follow patterns and guidelines. As you create an outline, think critically about what you are trying to explain or communicate in your research paper.
And then, finally, you start writing your paper. You might feel like you should have started writing it sooner. But no problem, all the work you have done up to this stage is also very important. It will help you to create a solid and clear research paper. While you are writing, don’t be a perfectionist. Don’t worry about not finding perfect words to write. There will be time to refine your paper.
Edit for Content
Now that you have got a written paper, congratulate yourself first. Now, please get back to work again. You still need to edit your paper before submitting it. Now it is time to make your paper perfect as much as possible. Start by editing your content—this includes wording and length of the paper. If your paper is too lengthy or too short, now this is the moment to build it up or cut it down to acceptable length.
Edit for Grammar
It is also important to check your paper for grammar mistakes. This might seem not very pleasant, but many online tools can help you out in this situation. Check out sources like Grammarly if you are unsure about what to do with commas, semicolons, prepositions, articles, or run-on sentences.
Re-read and Submit Your Paper
Once you are done with steps 1-9, it’s time to give yourself a little break. It will be helpful to read your paper in hard copy before final submission. You might come across spelling or formatting mistakes that your eyes missed while reading on your computer. It is time to submit, boom.
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