Research Paper Writing: Guide For Dummies

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Research papers are unlike any other paper students have handled before, which makes it quite common for a student to feel inexperienced in writing the assignment. When you are assigned a research paper by your professor, you can either order it from a reliable research paper writing service or use our guide for dummies and try to write your first paper.

Research Paper Writing: Guide For Dummies

Citing Sources

No professor will accept a paper that contains stolen content. This means that you must cite the sources of information you use. If you do not know how to do this, you can simply follow these rules:

  • Cite the source of any idea someone else originally wrote. You must still cite the source even if you rewrite this idea in your own words.
  • Cite all direct quotations from any source, including human, electronic and printed sources.
  • Do not cite information that are considered common knowledge
  • When you use an organizational pattern or train of logic that was originally created by someone else than you, cite this source, too.

Taking Notes

The research part of this type of paper is crucial to creating a good assignment. Therefore, you must learn to develop good note-taking habits that will later help you in writing and organizing the research. Here are the most important things you should know about taking notes for research papers:

  • Regardless of the source you use, make sure that you have a list that includes its author, date, title, publishing information and page number.
  • Enclose words in quotation marks if you are using the exact phrase from the original source.
  • Label and give a code number to all sources. The label should contain the page number and this code. In cases where the source you found does not have a page number, try to use other information that you find equally important.
  • Keeping a ‘table of contents’ where you will list the main ideas and the pages where you found them can prove to be very helpful later.
  • Always write down a note of a credit given to someone, even if the source does the crediting.

Information Gathering and Organization

Before starting to write your research paper, you should sit down and arrange the notes and information you plan to use in the writing. It is always best to make an outline where you will pick a structure and organize the sources, which will later help you to create a well-planned order of information.

You can use several structures to organize the information:

  • Contrast and comparison
  • Chronological order
  • Cause and effect
  • Arguments of pro and con
  • Groups affected by some problem, event or story

Checking the Research Paper for Grammar Errors

The writing does not end once you spent hours researching and writing your first draft since even the professional writers need to proofread and revise their writing before submitting the final version. Grammatical errors are unacceptable in a research paper, which is why you need to check your paper for mistakes. How can you do this?

  • Use the Word Spelling and Grammar tool or reliable tools such as Grammarly
  • Read the text several times even if you have used a tool for grammar
  • Make sure that every sentence agrees with the verb used
  • Always use present tense for literature and past tense for history
  • Do not make unnecessary changes when it comes to tenses
  • All descriptions should stand near the word they describe
  • Pronouns must have a clear meaning. If it refers to two or more nouns, remove the pronoun and replace it with a noun
  • Check for punctuation errors

If you have remembered these tips, you are now ready for your first try at writing a research paper. When crafting a research paper for the first time, it is always important to follow the paper’s structure and take more than enough time to go through all the steps. Once you learn all this, you can write research papers without worrying tha