What Is An Academic Research Paper

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In fact, this guide is designed to help you navigate the research voyage, through developing a research question and thesis, doing the research, writing the paper, and correctly documenting your sources.

This page lists some of the stages involved in writing a library-based research paper.

Once the research question is clearly defined, writing the paper becomes considerably easier. The key to successful scientific writing is getting the structure of the paper right.

The basic structure of a typical research paper is the sequence of Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion (sometimes abbreviated as IMRAD). The authors state: (i) the problem they intend to address—in other terms, the research question—in the Introduction; (ii) what they did to answer the question in the Methods section; (iii) what they observed in the Results section; and (iv) what they think the results mean in the Discussion.

Generally, only one main research question should be addressed in a paper (secondary but related questions are allowed).

If a project allows you to explore several distinct research questions, write several papers."Research paper." What image comes into mind as you hear those words: working with stacks of articles and books, hunting the "treasure" of others' thoughts?Whatever image you create, it's a sure bet that you're envisioning sources of information--articles, books, people, artworks.A good research paper addresses a specific research question.The research question—or study objective or main research hypothesis—is the central organizing principle of the paper.And that survey can be orderly and focused, if you know how to approach it.Don't worry--you won't get lost in a sea of sources.When you write a research paper you build upon what you know about the subject and make a deliberate attempt to find out what experts know.A research paper involves surveying a field of knowledge in order to find the best possible information in that field.The typical research paper is a highly codified rhetorical form [1,2].Knowledge of the rules—some explicit, others implied—goes a long way toward writing a paper that will get accepted in a peer-reviewed journal.


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