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How do you write a research paper?

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Quick Answer

Writing a research paper involves selecting a topic, researching the topic, outlining the paper and writing the paper. A research paper consists of a thesis statement, an introduction, body paragraphs and a conclusion. The paper must also include a page that includes a list of all the resources used to develop and support the argument of the paper.

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Full Answer

The first step in developing a research paper is selecting a topic. The topic should be interesting to the writer and specific enough that it can be covered thoroughly in the essay. Subjects that are overly technical, specialized or have limited source materials should be avoided.

After narrowing down on the topic, find sources that support the question or problem that needs to be solved. Reliable sources for research topics can be found in journals, books and online. Make sure the information used comes from reputable sources.

Once thorough research is gathered, outline the plan for the paper. An outline serves as a map for the final paper and helps organize the information and arguments to be discussed. Establish a thesis statement. The thesis states the writer’s belief about the topic.

Begin with an introduction that states the thesis and purpose of the paper. The introduction should include the major points covered in the body of the paper. After the introduction, write the body paragraphs. Present well-researched arguments that support the thesis. Save the strongest argument until the end of the paper.

The last step of a research paper is to write a conclusion. This last paragraph reminds the reader what the thesis is and summarizes the arguments developed throughout the paper. Be sure to include a page that lists all the bibliographical information used in the paper.

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