How to Start Research Paper

Sometimes the hardest thing in research paper writing is to get started. You need to come up with key arguments, decide what things to do a research paper on, organize your notes, and sit down at your desk to finally start it. Here are some simple steps to help you.

  • Read the instructions attentively

Your instructor will give you a prompt or requirements to let you determine the way your research should be shaped. Make sure to understand what you are required to do from the beginning. Otherwise, you can start writing and realize later that you did it all wrong. essay

Keep in mind the paper length, the number of sources, the topic, and the deadline.

  • Choose a topic

You will have to come up with a topic before doing research. It’s okay to adjust your topic during a research process.

  • Do a research

You should learn what has been already written by other people on your subject. Use online libraries or resources like Google Scholar to find out what to focus on. Don’t forget to take notes and write down all of your relevant ideas and thoughts.

  • Formulate a thesis

Your thesis statement should answer the main question of your paper in 1-2 sentences. A thesis is the central and the strongest argument you are going to develop in the body paragraphs.

  • Make an outline

There is no better way to organize your thoughts than the outline. The outline will help you to define the trajectory of your thoughts and figure out the way your arguments should be structured. It will help you to be more impressive and effective in your writing and introduce your general idea in the most coherent and logical way.

Write an outline in a form of headers for each section or paragraph of your paper. Include bullet points and quotations.

If there are obvious gaps in your outline, you are recommended to continue researching and gather more data.

Practical advice on how to start research paper

  • Start with a fact. Begin your introduction with a broader statement and move to a specific question of your research.
  • Define terms. There are papers that need to be started from quoting a dictionary. If your topic is not very common and your audience knows nothing about it, begin with explaining the key conceptions.
  • Begin with a story. If you are writing a Psychology, Political Science, History or Sociology paper, you can start it with a story that illustrates your topic. For example, you can include an anecdote or a surprising fact to grab your reader’s attention.
  • If you are not sure about how to start your research paper, you are welcome to take a look at the other works in your subject. They may be more professional that your paper should be, but they can give you a better understanding of the subject as well as some fresh ideas.