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Step-by-step guide on how to write a research paper: useful advice for dummies

Writing a research paper requires a thoughtful approach into various subject matters and topics you would like to discuss. It is important to follow a step-by-step process in order to write an effective research paper. Below is a list of steps you must consider when writing your research paper:

  1. Brainstorming
    • Make a list of ideas/topics you are interested in learning more about. The more interested you are in a topic, the more likely you will be in conducting in depth, thought provoking research.
    • Consider looking at ideas of research papers that have been written by others and determine what kind of paper you will be writing (i.e. History, scientific, social, etc.)
    • Ask for advice from others on relevant topics that may be interesting a wide variety of readers.
  2. Research
    • Once you have selected a topic, make sure to utilize various resources for your research (i.e. books, articles, reputable internet searches, blogs, etc.) to ensure the most accurate information available.
    • Take a look at all of the different sources you will be using and compare facts (dates, timelines, names, etc.) to prevent any potential discrepancies in your research.
    • Use creativity in your research by finding additional sources about your topic.
  3. Make an Outline
    • Narrow down the research, highlight, and take notes on main points.
    • Organize your notes in order of the way you will write your paper
    • Work on citations and reference pages as you go.
    • Develop your introduction statement and your main points.
  4. Write Your Paper
    • Begin by using the main points from your outline to write the body of your paper. Use evidence to support your main points and flowing transitional sentences to emphasize them.
    • Write the conclusion summarizing all the main points from your research and finalizing your ideas.
    • Write the introduction next which will allow you to take your ideas from the conclusion to introduce the topic to your reader with fulfilling information.
    • Edit your paper looking for all grammatical, transitional as well as spelling and idea corrections. Make sure to follow the assigned format.  Cite your sources.
    • Re-write your rough draft to produce the final draft of your research paper and write your reference page.

Research papers can be a wonderful tool to learn more about a particular subject, as well as accurately introduce your paper to your reader to inform and educate them about the topic. While it may seem overwhelming at times with a bit of patience and organization, it will turn it out just fine.