Major Parts Of A Research Paper: A Writing Tutorial

If you’re majoring in any field, you’ll have to write a research paper on a certain subject. The style and format of academic papers may vary according to the field in which they are written. However, a distinct structure of the research paper is used throughout all disciplines. The elements of this structure are as follows:

  1. Title page.
  2. Here you need to present the topic of your paper. It should be short and render the main problem of your work.

  3. Abstract.
  4. It’s a preview of your paper which will help the reader to find out the gist of the work. As a rule, the size of the abstract is limited to 200 words. Here you should state the following things:

    • introduction of the topic and research problems;
    • description of methods used;
    • results of the research.
  5. Introduction.
  6. In this section, you need to familiarize the reader with the topic in general. You should briefly outline the problem and prove its topicality. The second part of introduction is devoted, as a rule, to more particular set of questions regarding the topic.

  7. Literature review.
  8. In this section you are supposed to focus on prior significant works concerning your research problem. You need to combine all previous experience to create a full picture. For that purpose, you’ll have to read a lot of scientific literature.

  9. Methods.
  10. Here you should give an outline of the methods used during the research. While writing this part, try to give a detailed description.

  11. Results.
  12. The results of your work are elaborated in this section. You are free to choose the form of presentation but remember that the information in this part should strictly relate to your research results.

  13. Conclusions.
  14. It’s a part that devoted to the significance of your research. Here you should state the importance of the work to the related field of study.

  15. Works cited list.
  16. In this section, you should include all of the sources you cite. References are listed in the alphabetic order and are formatted according to certain rules.

  17. Appendix.
  18. If your paper contains a wealth of information, it makes sense to create an appendix. This is the best way to include questionnaires, tables, maps, photos, copies of documents, and so on that would otherwise disorganize the paper and confuse the readers.

You can find tips and tricks on how to write each of the aforementioned parts of a research paper in the school library, academic writing center, and on the education-related websites. It is a good idea to ask your peers what help resources they often use.