Different types of research papers

Different types of research papers

Writing a research paper may seem like a daunting task for many students. There are different types of research papers that you will be required to write in college. You need to understand how to write each of them.

Research papers can encompass vast areas in the social field and scientific or technical research fields. This means you will have to do in-depth research in these fields before writing your paper.

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Each research paper you write should be organized in specific formats of the research paper. This means the process of writing a research paper requires adequate time and preparation. The process can be challenging when you are writing a report for the first time.

What are research papers?

To understand how to write a research paper, you need to familiarize yourself with the research paper definition. A research paper is academic writing that involves scientific research.

This type of paper includes writing about experiments to improve existing knowledge or acquire knowledge. Research papers also involve testing hypotheses and laws in science and society.

When writing a research paper, you can use your experience and express your thoughts about the topic. The process requires you to research your topic, collect and analyze data and present your findings. Report writing will enable you to acquire skills like researching, data analysis, and report writing.

Types of scientific research papers

Different types of research papers require a different approach when preparing to write. Each paper has specific rules, and students need to understand them to write their papers correctly. Applying the correct rules in each paper means you will get full credit in the formatting and style section.

It is beneficial to know “what are the two main types of research papers?” before you can start writing. These two main types of research papers are argumentative and analytical papers.

Other research papers include definition, cause, and effect, interpretive, compare and contrast, reports, experimental, and survey. Here is a deeper look at each of these types of research papers

1.     Argumentative types of research papers

An argumentative approach will always have two different opinions. With that information in mind, you need to research your topic and identify the problem.

Present both viewpoints to your readers. Take a stand and support one of the viewpoints.

Support your opinion with well-researched facts and credible evidence from external sources. You can use statistical evidence and relevant examples to validate your opinion.

Make sure the reader’s attention is focused on the argument. Unlike an analytical paper that is purely based on facts, an argumentative research paper allows you to appeal to the emotions of your audience.

2.     Analytical paper

An analytical approach allows you to describe multiple viewpoints and analyze all of them. Finalize your analytical paper with a conclusion derived from the analysis process.

You will need to collect as much information as you can from various sources about your subject. The unique part about an analytical paper is you must keep your presentations as neutral as possible. Do not project any positive or negative views on your subject.

3.     Cause and effect research paper

This type of paper demonstrates what causes something to happen and the effects of what has happened. It is characterized by two questions “what?” and “why?” Its aim is to track a particular action in a clear manner that is understandable to the readers.

A cause and effect research paper can be applied in the business field and education sector. New students in college are usually assigned this type of paper to sharpen their skills in report writing. The writing process involves

  • Studying different types of research papers and topics
  • Organizing your writing process
  • Applying specific writing formats and styles to your text
  • Including references and citations in your work

4.     Definition research paper

This type of paper is an informative piece of writing where you present your readers with facts. When writing a definition research paper, you gather information from various sources and present them to your audience.

You should not include your personal opinion. The end result of your paper is what other researchers have discovered in their research work.

5.     Experimental paper

You may be asked to write an experimental research paper for your biology, physics, chemistry, sociology, or psychology papers. A research paper may be required when you need to conduct an experiment and describe the causes of an object.

You may also want to predict an event in your experiment. When you finalize your experiment, you need to deliver a detailed paper that describes the experiment process and results.

Your research paper should include supporting data you gathered during the experiment. You should collect, collate and analyze this data and present it as useful information for your readers.

6.     Compare and contrast research paper

These types of research papers require you to compare the similarities of two subjects and note their differences. The two subjects that you compare and contrast should belong in the same field.

For example, you can compare and contrast an apple and an orange. Apples and oranges are all fruits, so they qualify to be compared and contrasted.  

Analyze the similarities and the differences between the two subjects and come up with a conclusion. This type of paper is common in subjects like philosophy, literature, and social sciences.

7.     Survey paper

The method for writing a survey paper is to conduct the survey, collect and analyze data into meaningful information and draw your conclusions. A survey paper is mostly required to analyze specific conditions and behaviors.

It can be applied in areas like sociology, public health, psychology, advertising, and marketing. Respondents will need to answer questions about a specific subject in your survey. This is how you gather your data for analysis.

8.     An interpretive paper

This type of paper requires knowledge obtained from a particular field like psychology, business, or art. You will use acquired knowledge to write your paper. You may be asked to write an interpretive paper in literature and social sciences.

9.     A problem-solution paper

The method needed for this type of paper is to describe a problem, propose the best solution and defend your solution. Students and scholars write this type of paper to help provide solutions to specific problems.

The first step in writing a research paper that solves a problem is to analyze the problem.  After your analysis, you need to explore possible solutions to the problem and prove the effectiveness of the solutions using credible evidence.

10.Report

Compared to the other types of academic papers, writing a report is easier. When writing a report, you will need to outline your work so that it can flow logically from start to finish.

Writing a research paper report requires you to research your topic from various sources and present the information to your readers. The researched information helps you to express and support your personal view about the subject. The final part of your report should bring the discussion to a close as you highlight the main points about your topic.

How to start writing a research paper

Common Types of research papers

Understanding how to start writing your research paper is the key to successfully producing a high-quality academic research document of any type. Sometimes your instructor may provide a topic and guidance on how to start writing a research paper assignment.

Other times you may be required to perform your research and find a topic for your research paper. Here is a guide on how to find a good topic for your work

1.     Find an interesting topic for the types of research paper assignment

Perform thorough research for the topic of your paper. Browse online databases and library books and search for relevant topic ideas.

Look for examples that can give you ideas for your research paper. Write down the topic ideas and let them inspire you to generate a topic for your paper.

2.     Brainstorm your topic list

Brainstorm the list of topics that you have obtained from your research. Look at each topic and determine if it is appropriate for the type of research paper you are about to write.

Critically analyze the list of topics and select the most suitable and interesting subject for you and your audience. It is essential to select an interesting topic that will motivate you to research and write about it.

Allocate enough time for the brainstorming session. This will help you choose the best topic for your research work.

3.     Narrow down

A broad topic can be difficult to cover. Make sure you select a topic that is not too wide and not too narrow. If the topic you like is too broad, narrow it down before you can start working on it.

A narrow topic is focused and will give you better results. On the flip side, your topic should not be too narrow.

When your topic is too narrow, you might not get enough information to write about it. Ensure your topic is focused and current for a better outcome.

How to write a research paper

There are many types of research papers, and each has different styles of writing. Learning the requirements of different types of papers will enable you to get higher marks in the subject. When you understand your report writing assignment, you will avoid many pitfalls, like not knowing how to start writing a research paper.

1.     Write as the thoughts flow

The best way to start writing your research paper is to go with the flow of ideas that come to your mind. You need to start writing without overthinking.

Start from the point that is presently in your mind, and as you continue to write, more ideas will begin to flow automatically. Keep writing as creative ideas keep coming, and soon, your paper will start to take shape.

When you are at this initial stage of writing a research paper, do not stop to make corrections or format your documents. This will interrupt the flow of ideas in your mind. Formatting and corrections will happen later as you finalize your paper.

2.     Write your raw ideas

When you are at the early stages of writing a research paper, you can have many raw ideas coming to you at once. Do not worry about breaking the raw ideas at this point.

Write the ideas as they come to your mind as long as they are useful. You will develop your raw ideas later. Make sure the ideas you present can be validated.

3.     Focus on one concept

Focus on a single concept and present your arguments using this concept. When you use different concepts in your paper, your readers will be confused.

Different concepts on the same paper will make your work lack focus and clarity. When your work is focused, it is easy to write. Your audience can follow your line of thought.

4.     Write an interesting paper

A research paper does not have to be dull and boring. Whether you are writing or reading your research document, it should be exciting to you and your audience.

Make your narrative interesting to your readers. The information should be easy for them to understand. Avoid using jargon that may require readers to look for the meaning of words in the dictionary.

Focus on introducing the concept of your paper to your readers and explaining the significance of your research. Explain to them why the research is exciting and the solution it provides.

When you use this approach, the knowledge you share with your readers will spread around. Make sure you choose a writing style that suits the types of research papers you are working on. Ensure you use appropriate language, and your writing resonates with your audience.

5.     Writing a research paper abstract last

After writing your research paper, you will have a better understanding on what you are presenting to your audience. You can summarize your research paper in the abstract section.

Make sure your abstract is a reflection of what your paper entails. Writing your abstract last allows you to give an accurate summary of your research.

6.     Ask for review and feedback

Look for a good reviewer that will check your work and give you feedback. Allocate enough time for review and feedback, especially if you are writing a research paper for the first time.

A good reviewer will look at your work and explain to you the aspects of your paper that are important and what you need to speed more time on. This way, you can shape your paper and make it better.

7.     Pay attention to specific parts of your paper

Make your arguments strong on areas like your introduction. The introduction is the entry point of your paper, and it should make your readers want to read your entire document.

Pay attention to the problem you are trying to solve and your main idea. Make sure you are clear in these areas, and your audience can follow your line of reasoning.

All parts of your research paper are important, but the introduction, problem, and idea are more attractive to your readers. Pay more attention to them.

8.     Ask your friends to read your work

When your friends read your work, they can give you suggestions on how to improve it. You can also understand if your work is easy to grasp or not.

Incorporate suggestions that you receive from your friends and improve the quality of your paper. You can reach out for help from your instructor if you need any assistance. For example, if there is an instruction you do not understand, ask your instructor to clarify it.

Parts of a research paper

 

When writing a research paper, there are specific parts that you need to include in your work. Different types of writing paper should have the following

1.     Abstract

An abstract is a short summary that explains what your paper is all about from start to finish.  Make your abstract clear so that readers can understand your research when they read the abstract.

It should have approximately 100 words, and it should explain the objective of your research. The objective is a process or product that you propose.

2.     Introduction

The introduction is the opening of your paper that introduces your topic. It provides your readers with background information and describes your topic. Ensure your introduction tells your audience what your research paper is trying to achieve.

3.     Methodology

Your research paper should explain the method you have used in your research work. This should include the data collection and analysis methods.

4.     Results

The result section of your paper is where you provide the outcome of your research work. Results can be in the form of figures, or they can be observational.

5.     Discussion

The discussion part is where you interpret the results you have provided. You will discuss the results produced and anything that may have affected their outcome.

You can present your opinion based on the results. Explain if they meet your expectations based on your theoretical knowledge on the subject.

6.     References and citations

Different types of writing papers need to be cited appropriately. Your research paper should have references and a citation section where you cite phrases you have used from other resources. This is an important section in your paper as it enables you to avoid plagiarism issues.

The structure of a research paper

An outline of your research paper will enable your work to flow smoothly from start to finish. It is a guide that helps you to remember your main point as you write your paper.

It makes the writing process easy and fast. You can use a research paper template to structure your work. The following are elements of the structure of your research paper

1.     Title

The title that you choose for your paper can be a question or an opening statement depending on your research paper topic. Make sure your title is attractive enough to catch the attention of your audience. This will encourage your readers to read the introduction and your whole paper.

2.     Abstract

Provide a summary of what your paper is trying to achieve. Include the objective of your paper and the results you have presented.

3.     Introduction

The introduction paragraph is the face of your research paper. You need to make it appealing to your audience, so they read the introduction part and read your entire research paper.

The first sentence of the introduction of any type of research paper should be a hook. A clear hook will encourage the reader to continue reading your paper.

A shocking statistic, anecdote, simile, or famous quotes, among others, are some of the hooks you can consider for your introduction sentence. The following sentences should provide background information about your topic.

Do not delve into details about your subject in the introduction paragraph but present a few highlights. The details of your work should be presented in the body section. The final one or two sentences of your introduction should be your thesis statement.

4.     Thesis statement

A thesis statement that is the main idea of your paper is the foundation of the different types of research papers you write. It should reflect the central message in the arguments you present to your reader.

Make sure you perform thorough research of your thesis statement according to the requirements of the type of paper you are assigned to work on. Present a clear and concise thesis that can quickly inform your readers what your paper is about.

5.     Body Paragraphs

The body paragraph is where the weight of your paper lies. Provide a detailed discussion about your topic and back it up with credible evidence and relevant examples.

Each body paragraph should represent a sub-point, and it should have a coherent flow from one point to the next. Include the following in your body paragraph

  • Methods you have used in your research work
  • The results you obtained in your research or experiment
  • Discussion of your processed results which can include your personal opinion

6.     Conclusion

Write a summary of what you have discussed as you highlight your main points. This way, you remind your readers of your major points after reading all the details of your research in the body section.

Restate your thesis statement and conclude your paper in an impactful way. When concluding your research paper, make your readers want to perform more research on your topic.

7.     Bibliography

The bibliography section is an integral part of any type of writing paper you will handle. Recall the authors of the original sources that you have used in your research work.

When you use a quote or materials from other authors, make sure you cite and reference them correctly in your bibliography section. This way, you can avoid cases of plagiarism.

Proper citation will give you full credits according to the grading rubric. Here are things to consider when writing your bibliography

Keep track of helpful resources

When writing a research paper, keep track of reference materials like books, magazines, articles, academic journals, videos, and websites that you have used. These are sources that you have used to obtain relevant materials for your work.

Keeping track of these materials will enable you to write an accurate bibliography. You will mention and properly cite all the work of authors whose original material you have used.

Check your Bibliography

After writing your bibliography counter check whether it has all the important information. Ensure you include the complete title of the materials, the author’s name, the place, and the date of publication.

8.     Proofread your research papers

When you finish writing your research paper, read through it and make corrections. Check your grammar, spelling, and punctuations and correct them.

You can use grammar software to make your proofreading processes quick and easier. Read your paper out loud and correct any sentences that do not fit in your writing.

Make sure your sentences are correctly constructed and your paragraphs are coherent. The proofreading process is an essential stage in types of research papers.

Submitting a report that is full of errors can make you lose marks. It also lowers your credibility as a writer. Polish your research paper and make sure all the evidence and examples you have provided are accurate.

What types of research papers are typically written in APA style?

different types of research papers

When you are assigned a research paper to write, your instructor will provide instructions on the format you should use. Make sure you read the instructions carefully and follow them to get full credit on your paper.

APA style is one of the formats that students use to write their research papers. It is mainly used in science subjects, and you need to make sure your points are brief and precise.

Your writing should be professional. Avoid unnecessary details and fluff.

This helps to keep your paper brief and concise. Here are papers that are typically written in APA style

1.     Empirical studies

When generating a research paper using empirical studies, you will collect data from the observations you make. You can also get data from an experiment you are conducting. This type of paper is based on actual data and not theories like most papers.

2.     Literature review papers

 A literature review will require you to collect information on your topic regarding a particular problem. The research that you perform is from other authors’ work or group of work. Your paper should attempt to offer a solution and encourage future research of the topic.

3.     Theoretical papers

When you write this type of paper, collect, analyze and share information about your topic. The aim of your research is to address a particular problem.

Your paper should come up with a new theory that attempts to solve a specific problem. In your text, you need to provide valid evidence to justify your theory.

4.     Methodological papers

A methodological paper will reveal new ways to perform an existing practice. This is usually presented in a scientific procedure.

You need to prove your new method using proper documentation that will validate it. You also need to identify current methods and provide plenty of evidence for your new methods.

5.     Case study papers

This type of paper requires you to research and provide information about an individual or a group of people. You will write about the methodology of your research and give a conclusion of your study. You can also encourage your audience to perform further research on the subject.

Tips for writing different types of research papers

Make sure that the different types of research papers you write have high quality and decent content. The way to ensure you produce quality papers is to master the various types of research papers and their requirements.

Write your papers using literary language and start with an outline. An outline will enable you to organize your thoughts logically from start to finish. Consider the following tips when working on your research papers

1.     Master the writing styles and format

APA formatting style is one of the common styles that writers use. Master the different writing styles and understand the most appropriate style for your paper.

Read and understand the prompt that your instructor has provided. You can ask for clarification if the formatting style is not clear.

2.     Organize your work

Make sure your work is structured correctly from beginning to end. This will help you plan your work. Your personal thoughts will not get lost in the middle of the writing process.

Your readers will be able to follow your line of reasoning and understand your paper. Ensure you prepare your primary sentence, which is known as a research problem. Write your hypothesis and thesis statement according to the type of research paper you are working on.

Key takeaway

Many students may find the process of writing a research paper challenging. Sometimes they can mix up the requirements of the different types of research papers. When you understand the different requirements in each type of paper, then the process becomes easier.

Study the different types of papers, how to write and format them. An outline will help you to organize your work. It will ensure a smooth writing process. Always proofread your work before submitting it. If you need professional writing help with any type of research paper, seek help from our team of experts.Click here to proceed.

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