How Do You Write a Research Paper: General Writing Rules

Writing a research paper can be fun. As you learn the rules and formulas, you will find the task to be easily managed. The research paper does have set rules that you will need to adhere to as you write it.

If you break down the process, you can see an overview and set dates for your completion. You can also learn to use these guidelines as a checklist. There are a few bits of business you will need to take care of before you start.

Find Out

Ask your teacher if the paper should be written using MLA or APA formatting. Once your teacher tells you, brush up on the rules for each style.

Then ask your instructor if the outline will be in topic form or sentence form. Once she tells you these things you can turn your attention to your thesis statement.

Thesis Statement

The thesis statement is a sentence that indicates to your reader what you will be discussing in the paper. Find out from the teacher how many pages long the paper should be, how many main points you should have, and how many in-text citations you will need.

All of these things will help you decide how many ideas you should include in your thesis statement. Once you know these pieces of information, begin to do some research.

Data Bases

Ask your teacher if any databases are off-limits for use. Keep in mind that you need to use valid and credible sources to support your thoughts and your theories. The web has opened up college libraries to the world, so staying on an academic database should not be a problem.

While at the databases researching, keep in mind how many sources you are required to have by the teacher. Then add on two-three extra sources in case you decide not to use any of them. Always have a buffer for safety.

The Outline

After creating a thesis statement, gathering data, and making sure you know all the rules for the paper, you are now ready to build your outline. Building a detailed outline will make writing the paper easier, so carefully construct the outline. Take your time and do a thorough and complete job.

Rough Drafts and The Final Draft

Do not be surprised or worried if you have to write several rough drafts to get to the final composition. Make sure to fine-tune the paper as you progress. Always keep the thesis statement in your mind as a guide.

Your final paper will include either a Works Cited page or a bibliography. The teacher will want all of the materials and steps you have completed. He or she may ask for you to put everything in a large folder when you submit it. Ask the teacher for a checklist if he or she does not provide you with one. Before you know it, you will be finished with your research paper!

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