College Guide To Research Paper Writing

What is Research Paper

A definition of Research Paper is as follows:

A research paper is a presentation of findings after you have investigated a topic. How do you conduct the investigation? You do this by accumulating primary and secondary sources. Relevant sources must be evaluated, and here is where you need to use your critical thinking skills.


Purpose of Research Paper


Purpose of Research Paper is to interpret material and offer a unique perspective, solution, or answer:

  • Suggesting how an issue or process can be improved
  • Highlighting both the strengths and weaknesses of material
  • Learning how to evaluate the work of others
  • Expanding on and adding to existing thoughts


Types of Research Papers


Students present findings in various forms depending on the question requirements. The two most popular forms are:

By purpose:


Argumentative Research Paper

This paper persuades readers to accept a theory that is controversial or debatable. The writer offers a stance in the introduction -- in their thesis statement -- and then argues in favor of the position. Using credible primary and secondary sources, they convince readers of a unique viewpoint.


Analytical Research Paper


The purpose is to explore the answer to a question about a topic. Writers don’t stick to a particular side. They analyze a range of viewpoints and include enough support based on strong sources. This way, readers can make their own conclusions. Critical evaluation is essential!

By Format:


General Research Paper


This format is appropriate for writing in the humanities. Logical arrangement and critical analysis help readers to understand your deductions. A general research paper contains three main sections -- an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. You also need to consider if the paper is argumentative, analytical, or one of the other types.


Scientific Research Paper


A scientific research paper uses a more rigid structure to present findings and methods. This creates a system of uniformity to deliver data to the scientific community. Because of its structure, people can obtain information from a scientific paper in different ways -- they can browse the abstract or go straight to tables and results.

Read more: General vs Scientific research paper: What is the Difference?


Steps to Writing a Good Research Paper


Choosing a Topic


  • Try to find a topic that truly interests you
  • Try writing your way to a topic
  • Talk with your course instructor and classmates about your topic
  • Pose your topic as a question to be answered or a problem to be solved

Useful links:


Conducting Research


Selecting Sources


Here are some tips for finding primary and secondary sources online:

  • Search the websites of institutions, organizations, and people that are experts in the field or who are reputable sources of knowledge. For example, Encyclopedia Britannica and Encyclopedia Americana (available through a library) have long been trusted knowledge bases.
  • Use online libraries such as the International Public Library and the Wall Street Executive Library
  • categorizes thousands of newspapers from around the world
  • Use databases like Google Scholar and Science Direct to find research abstracts and reports, journal articles, manuscripts, scholarly articles, and much more.
  • Pay attention to the domain name of websites. A domain is identified by the letters at the end of a website URL. If you want to find reports from a university, for instance, focus on sites with .edu at the end of the URL. Government websites end with .gov. Information on these sites is probably more accurate than .com pages.


Documenting Information


Organize your research by using annotations and making lists of references. Use cards, colors, or any other method to group ideas. Note why you think the source is important and what point it supports. This is useful for creating a good outline and facilitates the writing process.


Writing an Outline


What is Research Paper Outline


An outline is a plan of how you will arrange ideas in the most effective way possible. Information needs to be organized and must flow logically for readers to understand the point of your research.


Purpose of Outline


The purpose and advantages of preparing an outline before writing include:

  • You classify information beforehand; Consequently, you focus on expressing your ideas and using the right grammar and structures when you write the actual paper.
  • Outlining saves time. You do the hard work of finalizing main points and supporting data and facts. All you need to do afterward is write it coherently.
  • An outline reveals irrelevant or weak material. When you view the full plan and how ideas flow and complement each other, unnecessary points are clear to spot.
  • Outlining allows you to select the most relevant sources and incorporate them in a way that strengthens your points.


How to Construct an Outline


Your outline is not set in stone. You can go back and change sections if you find new information or discover better research. However, the elements of an outline are standard, and they separate the blueprint into an introduction, body paragraphs or sections, and a conclusion. Sections can be divided using headings and subheadings.

Main headings use roman numerals (I, II, III, IV etc.) Subheadings use letters of the alphabet (A, B, C etc.) Each main heading should contain two or more subheadings.

Useful links:


Writing a Body


Here is where a strong outline makes writing easier. You know the number of body paragraphs to include. You have a main idea for each body paragraph as well as its supporting information, and you can integrate your sources to support claims. Remember you don’t summarize sources. You analyze, deconstruct, compare and explain them in order to lend weight to your paragraphs and, ultimately, your thesis statement. The number of body paragraphs depends on the depth of research. Longer projects need several headings and subheadings in the body.


Writing a Conclusion


End your paper with a conclusion that rephrases the thesis statement and summarizes main points. Explain your deductions and suggest areas of the topic that can be researched next.


Revising and Making a Final Draft


  • Check overall organization: logical flow of introduction, coherence and depth of discussion in body, effectiveness of conclusion.
  • Paragraph level concerns: topic sentences, sequence of ideas within paragraphs, use of details to support generalizations, summary sentences where necessary, use of transitions within and between paragraphs.
  • Sentence level concerns: sentence structure, word choices, punctuation, spelling.
  • Documentation: consistent use of one system, citation of all material not considered common knowledge, appropriate use of endnotes or footnotes, accuracy of list of works cited.


Research Paper Help


By Type of Service


Research Paper Writing Service


Edusson offers Research Paper Writing Service to high-school and college level students. It may help if you want to get you paper written for you by someone professional in the field of study.


Scope of Service


Research Paper Writing Service includes the following types of assignments:

  • Custom Papers
  • Research Proposal
  • Research Summary
  • Research Paper Writing


How it works?


Research Paper Writing Service works like that:

  • Student places an Order
  • Make their offers
  • Student Hires a Writer
  • Writer Works on a Research Paper and reports on the progress
  • Student pays in milestones if happy




Starts from $18 per page. Discounts apply to new customers as well as  offers with extended deadline.




  • Title page
  • Formatting
  • References
  • Plagiarism check


Examples of completed orders



Topic Generation


Use Essay Topic Generator at to discover a topic that truly interests you. Topics are already stated as a question to be answered or a problem to be solved.


Examples of Research Paper by other Students


Edusson Magic Help is a great website that gives access to more 20 000 essay and research paper examples and is updated daily. All essays are written by actual students and donated to the database for educational purposes.


Essay Builder


Essay Builder (beta) is tool that helps build essays online, gives suggestion on grammar, style, language use as well as has in-built plagiarism check.


Essay Checker


Robot Don is a great way to check essay and recieve an Essay Score by 7 characteristics. It really helps and may even predict your Grade.


Research Paper Editing Service


Available at Edusson and provided by hundreds of freelance editors. 


Research Paper Proofreading Service


Also, available at Edusson and provided by hundreds of freelance profreaders. 


By Marker’s Expectations:




Make sure you have done the following steps on Research Stage:

  • Selected the type of research paper
  • Picked a worthwhile topic
  • Gathered information from a variety of primary and secondary sources
  • Constructed a solid outline to guide your thought and writing processes
  • Put everything together in written form

If you have not or need help, consider using:




Here’s the Research Paper Content Checklist:

  • The paper shows critical analysis of the topic
  • Your introduction contains a thesis statement or a hypothesis.
  • You worked according to your outline, for the most part, ensuring no important data has been omitted.
  • The paper answers the thesis or proves/disproves the hypothesis presented in the introduction.
  • Ideas flow logically and support the thesis or hypothesis.
  • Supporting information and sources are valid and act as a strong backbone for the paper.
  • Facts and figures are accurate.
  • Sources are accurately cited using APA, MLA, or Chicago.

If you feel uncomfortable about your Content Quality here are Research Paper Help options for you:


Language and Style


Research Paper Language and Style Checklist:

  • The correct tenses are used. For example, use the past tense to describe methods or the present tense for generally accepted facts.
  • Vocabulary and writing style make your ideas clear and concise, so the point of the paper is not lost to the reader.
  • The language shows objectivity. Using the third person instead of the pronoun ‘I’ is one way to do this.
  • Spelling and punctuation are accurate.
  • Paragraphs contain a topic sentence, transitions, and a summary sentence if necessary.
  • The paper is divided into appropriate sections -- headings are used to lead from one section to another and transition words link ideas.
  • The paper is in the right format and follows the instructor's guidelines.
  • The language is formal.

Help Tips:

  • Use Robot Don, the Essay Checker, to check Language Usage, Readability as well as get ab overall Grade for your Paper.
  • Use Edusson Revision Service


Useful resources


Writing a Research Paper


This handout provides detailed information about how to write research papers including discussing research papers as a genre, choosing topics, and finding sources.

Contributors: Jack Raymond Baker, Allen Brizee, Ashley Velázquez
Last Edited: 2018-02-14 03:36:12

The Research Paper

There will come a time in most students' careers when they are assigned a research paper. Such an assignment often creates a great deal of unneeded anxiety in the student, which may result in procrastination and a feeling of confusion and inadequacy. This anxiety frequently stems from the fact that many students are unfamiliar and inexperienced with this genre of writing. Never fear—inexperience and unfamiliarity are situations you can change through practice! Writing a research paper is an essential aspect of academics and should not be avoided on account of one's anxiety. In fact, the process of writing a research paper can be one of the more rewarding experiences one may encounter in academics. What is more, many students will continue to do research throughout their careers, which is one of the reasons this topic is so important.

Becoming an experienced researcher and writer in any field or discipline takes a great deal of practice. There are few individuals for whom this process comes naturally. Remember, even the most seasoned academic veterans have had to learn how to write a research paper at some point in their career. Therefore, with diligence, organization, practice, a willingness to learn (and to make mistakes!), and, perhaps most important of all, patience, students will find that they can achieve great things through their research and writing.

This handout will include the following sections related to the process of writing a research paper:

  • Genre- This section will provide an overview for understanding the difference between an analytical and argumentative research paper.
  • Choosing a Topic- This section will guide the student through the process of choosing topics, whether the topic be one that is assigned or one that the student chooses himself.
  • Identifying an Audience- This section will help the student understand the often times confusing topic of audience by offering some basic guidelines for the process.
  • Where Do I Begin- This section concludes the handout by offering several links to resources at Purdue, and also provides an overview of the final stages of writing a research paper.

0 thoughts on “College Guide To Research Paper Writing”


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *