Vital Things To Remember About Research Paper Format

Writing research papers is rather difficult and time-consuming. You have to take care about many things at once: choosing an interesting topic, finding reliable sources, defining the purpose of you study, drawing the right conclusions etc. However, there is one more thing that can cause many problems: the format of the paper.

The Layout of the Paper

The first thing you have to keep in mind is the structure of your paper. Although academic paper layouts in different education establishments may vary, these are the sections a typical paper should include:

  • Title
  • The front page with your name and the name of your topic.

  • Abstract
  • A brief summary on the purpose, methods and conclusions of your paper.

  • Introduction
  • A detailed overview of the keywords and terms, purposes, questions and sources of the study.

  • Materials and methods
  • A detailed description of the objects of research and of the methods applied.

  • Results
  • A section on the findings of your study.

  • Discussion
  • A comparison between your results and findings and the ones of your predecessors.

  • Acknowledgments (optional)
  • A “thank you” section where you can express your gratitude to those who helped you conduct the research. (If you can’t think of anyone, just skip this section).

  • Bibliography
  • An alphabetized list of all sources you used to write your paper.

    Some Tips on What to Keep in Mind

    Knowing the general rules of formatting and layout is good, but there are more thing to keep in mind if you want to write a perfect paper. Before you get down to work, make sure you do the following:

    • Read your academic writing guide.
    • Many educational establishments publish academic writing guides to help students deal with their academic papers. Take care to read the guide and make sure the structure of your paper complies with the requirements of your school, college or university.

    • Consult your professors.
    • A research supervisor is there to help you, not to torture you. Don’t be afraid to ask him or her questions about the format of your paper. Remember that you can get the most trustworthy information from people working at your educational establishment.

    • Pay attention to your style and language.
    • Errors in grammar, punctuation and style can spoil even the perfect paper. Pay special attention to your spelling and to the style you’re using. Try to avoid passive voice where possible and don’t use contractions (write “do not” instead of “don’t” and “is not” instead of “isn’t”). Use an online spell-checker to make sure your text is flawless.


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