Research Paper Examples

Did you know that the use of a research paper is not only to gather useful information, but it is also used to expound knowledge from a specific kind of topic? There are a lot of fun facts about a research paper but the most common fun fact is the one stated above. There are a lot of people who do have mixed feelings when it comes to writing research papers, and you are not alone if you feel the same way. Many academic scholars, teachers and students are given the opportunity to write a research paper, however, there are only a few of these people who do see the importance of a research paper. With that being said, here is some necessary information you would need in order to understand and of course get to know a research paper in a different light.

Research Paper Definition

A research paper is defined as a type of essay written in order to expound ideas, to do research and to hand in information of a given topic.

What Is a Research Paper?

As defined above, a research paper is a type of essay. It is a type or piece of academic writing that talks, defines or expounds on a specific topic. Research papers are often mistaken to be the same as that of a thesis report, however, they are quite different from one another. A research paper is an academic paper that gathers different information and details from different sources. It is not as lengthy as that of a thesis paper or a thesis report. A research paper is a piece or a part of academic writing. Whereas a thesis report or a thesis paper is a lengthier type of writing and would take months to finish. A research paper does not. Thesis reports are also lengthier compared to a research paper. 

Main Purpose of a Research Paper?

The goal or the purpose of a research paper is to gather different views, different opinions and a variety of information regarding the topic in mind.  Research papers are used in order to interpret your idea on the topic that was given to you. Another main purpose of a research paper is to accumulate a variety of details from different sources and bring them in as one whole set of ideas.  In addition to that, a research paper gives you the opportunity to dissect the topic in depth. Lastly, the purpose of a research paper is to gain enough or more knowledge on the subject.

Types of Research Paper

  • Analytical Research Paper

Writing an analytical research paper, there are some points you have to take into consideration. We know that this kind of research paper requires you and the reader to analyze key points within the topic. To describe or view your points in different angles. Before drawing any conclusion, one must first analyze the entire topic or problem. As this type of research paper’s main process is to  scrutinize before making or giving a final say. However, when you write your analytical research paper, you must always remain neutral. This would mean you cannot choose or you must not agree to a certain opinion over the other. This would defeat the purpose of your research paper.


  • Argumentative Research Paper

When you think of an argumentative research paper, you would associate it with arguments. It is also an example of an academic research paper. You would associate it with the fact that you must look at two or more key points of a topic. An argumentative research paper’s main purpose is to expound on a specific or general topic and to view it in different perspectives. This would mean that for each topic, the pros and the cons of each would be discussed. However, unlike the analytical research paper where you must not choose one opinion or one side to agree on, the argumentative research paper requires you to do just that.

  • Cause and Effect Research Paper

The cause and effect research paper is the stepping stone to getting to know how to write a research paper. A cause and effect research paper is the type of research paper that freshmen are tasked to do. The cause and effect research paper’s main focus is to let you describe the situation or the topic and predict in a way as to what may happen whether it would be positive or negative. Once you have described it you moved on to presenting or enumerating its causes and effects. When you have done so, you are now ready to make your conclusion. An example for this cause and effect research paper topic would be flooding. You describe all about flooding. After you write the causes and effects of flooding which would look like this: The cause of flooding is people throwing their trash anywhere, the effect of this would be the place would clog due to trash. The conclusion would be a solution to the problem.

  • Experimental Research Paper

An experimental research paper from the term in itself would give you the idea that this kind of research paper focuses mainly on the experimental process. The experimental research paper’s main purpose is to discuss in detail the process of how the experiment was done. In addition to that, experimental research papers give you an opportunity to write down some experiences you have while conducting the experiment. The experiences as well as the data you have taken from the experiment is then piled up to use as existing or updating current research and data.

  • Problem – Solution Research Paper

A problem – solution research paper as the term shows is a type of research paper that finds solutions to every problem. For this kind of research paper, the main goal is to find a problem, analyze the problem, find the solution and prove the fact that the solution is made for the problem. Regardless of how many solutions a person can come up with for the problem, to find if this solution is possible and is able to hit the target problem, one must always analyze and experiment whether it is true or not. To get your readers to understand the research paper, you must make sure that your problem is interesting enough to capture their attention. You must also convince your readers that it is necessary and important to solve the problem as well as giving a short but specific explanation about it. Explain that the solution you gave is the best and lastly, that the solution you chose is better than the other kinds of solutions.

  • Report Research Paper

A report research paper is a type of research paper that lets the author gather information about the topic in order to give out facts. In order to understand the entire research paper, gathering enough information about the topic is necessary as well as the facts that have been gathered would be analyzed in order to summarize the entire research into a single outline. Basically we know that a report research paper needs to gather information about the topic in order for the research paper to be understandable. What it also does is it outlines the entire data being collected, analyzes the entire information and lastly it summarizes the entire information to make it clearer and more understandable.

  • Engineering Research Paper

An engineering research paper is the type of research paper often written by students, but not limited to engineers, scholars and even scientists. This research paper is often made by engineering students for a subject in school. The most common topics made for an engineering research paper are topics that are associated with technology and engineering in general.

Often than not this research paper topic is often done for general to specific studies based in the field. To write an engineering research paper follows the same general way of writing a research paper, except the only difference is the topic that is given. 

  • Survey Research Paper

A survey research paper as the name suggests is a type of research paper whose information caters mainly on the output taken from surveys. This type of research paper is cited as a collection of data given by a series of questions to random or specific individuals. The research paper basically gives the author an opportunity to gather data by conducting a survey based on the topic, analyze the information they have gathered and to draw up conclusions based on the survey.

Parts of a Research Paper

Many students, scholars, teachers and academic writers know that to write a research paper, you must also know the parts of a research paper. It does not necessarily mean that if you are writing a paper, you would automatically know all the right parts or all the right areasWith that, we should also know that each part of the research paper plays a role. Regardless of what type of research paper you are going to be writing, you must also know what these are and what their main purposes are. With that being said, here are the ten most common parts of a research paper. 


  • Title Page / Cover Page

The title page or the cover page is the first thing that you would notice or should at least write for your research paper. The idea is to give the reader what they may be expecting or at least to give the reader an idea of what your paper will be about. In addition to that, a title page or a cover page before you start your research paper is common and should be expected at all times. Your title page should not be too vague nor too specific. It should at least include the general topic of what you are planning to discuss in your research paper.


  • Abstract

Abstracts are what we would call as the miniature version of your entire research paper. They are as important as the title page or the cover page of your research paper. Abstracts help by giving the reader the scope of your research paper. As the title page gives the idea, the abstract gives out the summary or the scope. This means that before you are going to dive into your research paper, your abstract should be present. Your abstract should not be too long nor too short. This is just the short version of your research paper. So it does not necessarily have to be very specific.


  • Table of Contents

Just as a thesis paper needs this, so does a research paper. We know about what a table of contents would be. We also know that a table of contents lists all the information needed with the pages that correspond to it. Basically, a table of contents is a guide to where you are able to find the information you seek without having to go through the entire research paper.


  • Introduction

An introduction is the part of the research paper that introduces your topic, your discussion and the general idea of what your paper is about. Introductions for research papers are different from introductions to other materials. For example, for a research paper introduction, the goal of your research paper is written, as well as how you may be approaching your topic. In addition to that, this is also an opportunity to present your topic to your reader. The introduction plays an important role for your research paper as this is how the reader may want to know more about it. As well as it guides them to think outside the box.


  • Body of the Research Paper

The body of your research paper is also considered as the heart of the entire research paper. This part of your research paper, your main goal is to discuss the topic you have chosen, add in your facts or evidence. The evidence would be from the information you have researched on and from the data you have collected. In addition to that, the body of the research paper is where you are going to be convincing your reader to agree to your findings, your opinions and your claims. However, if the body of your research paper is more than just a single paragraph which is most likely the case, it is best to divide them into sections for a better understanding.


  • Findings

The findings are based on the outcomes from what you have gathered during the process of your research report. This means that what resources you have used in order to get what you need would also depend on how it was done. Any findings that you have taken into consideration are also important to make your research paper clearer. In this case, there is no such thing as little to no findings. Especially if you are writing an experimental research paper or a survey research paper. There should always be findings to support your opinion or your knowledge of your paper. Your findings serve as proof. The more proof you have about your topic, the better chance for you to be able to explain about them.


  • Explanations

The explanations from the term itself is where you are going to be expounding on what your findings are about. What the whole purpose of your findings are and why you believe what you have taken out is correct. It is also an opportunity for the author to convince the readers of their opinions as facts. In addition to that, the explanations that are going to be taken from the findings in your research paper are going to be based on the results of your findings. This means that explaining how it all went down should be based solely on how the findings went. No unnecessary information that is not seen or based on your findings should be a part of your explanations as it defeats the whole purpose.

  • Conclusion

The conclusion for your research paper is based mainly on the summary of the entire research paper. To summarize the entire topic into a few good paragraphs and to insist on your opinions. It is also a good idea to leave behind a good final impression on your readers. Something that would give them a reason to think it over. This is why it is always best to summarize it in a way that could reach your audience. In addition to that, your conclusion should at least be able to answer the questions or at least prove to your readers about your topic for your research paper. The goal for your conclusion is to address the problem you chose or the topic you chose and to summarize the findings, the research, the progress and to address your final take on it.

  • Reference List

A reference list often called a bibliography or a work cited page is a list of your sources you have cited throughout your research paper. Your reference list acts like a cited table of contents for your readers to cross check for your sources. The purpose of your reference list is to write down all the information you have cited. Of course this may also depend on which format you may be using when you are writing your reference list. If you are using the APA format, you would be stating it as the reference list. However, if you are using the MLA format, the reference list would be changed into works cited.

  • Appendix

The appendix contains other information from your resources. The references that are not completely a part of your research paper but would be a helpful reference or resource for your readers to know more about the topics or subtopics they have encountered in your research paper. The appendix is only also stated if there is other necessary information you may want to add for extra research for your readers. For some research papers, the appendix is only optional.

Difference between MLA and APA

When it comes to choosing a format for your research paper, there are only two types. The MLA and the APA. However, a lot of us often mistake these two types by thinking or assuming that they simply have the same format and the same uses. Which is sometimes the case and often happens to students who are tasked to do their research papers. This is a common mistake but it is also best to know which format to use to avoid making the mistake. Often than not it may affect how we write our research paper. To start off, let us first understand what the acronyms of MLA and APA stand for. It is common knowledge for many that the acronym MLA means Modern Language Association and APA stands for American Psychological Association.

You should only use the MLA format if you are writing or citing your sources for arts, literature, cultural studies and humanities. Since the MLA format is made only and solely for language and literature. For the font size and the font you can use for this type of format would be Times New Roman and the font size is 12. If you use TNR at the beginning, you must also use it for the whole research paper. If you plan to use the MLA format for your  research paper, you must know that it is only made for language, literature and any related subjects to humanities. However, if your paper does not fall under those subjects, the MLA format is not the right choice. You may use the APA format if your research paper falls under technical writing, academic writing, social sciences, psychology and any other subject that falls under these categories.

In addition to that, APA formats for research papers are often most commonly used by students, teachers, criminology students, psychology, social sciences, linguists, economics, and academic researchers or even those who may be studying in the field of business. Font size for APA may vary from the type of font you may be using. For Times New Roman the general font size is 12. However, if you are planning on using a different font, the font size would differ as well. For example, for Calibri the font size would be 11, for Georgia 11, Arial which is the most common format to use for APA, the font size is 11.

How to Write a Research Paper

1) Be familiar with the task you are given

Get a better understanding of the task that has been assigned to you.

2) Brainstorm and choose a topic for your research paper

Of all the topics that may be given to you, think about the right topic or problem you would want to write and discuss about.

3) Run a comprehensive research of your chosen topic

Do comprehensive research in order to understand your topic before you start with your research paper.

4) Write a thesis statement

Your thesis statement should declare what your topic of your research should be about and how it supports your entire research paper.

5) Make an outline for your research paper

Outlining your research paper helps by giving you a good bird’s eye view of how your research paper should look once it is done.

6) Construct a whole draft to gather all your information

Draft your paper and gather enough information to write your research paper.

7) Write the introduction about your topic

The introduction should not be too specific or too general as the introduction is about your topic or your problem with your research paper.

8) Add the body of your research paper

The body is considered the heart of the entire research paper, so when you write it, it must at least be specific or descriptive and of course filled with the entire information about your topic or problem.

9) State your conclusion

The conclusion consists of three or more paragraphs of an entire summary of the problem, the introduction, the body which includes how you have conducted your problem to its findings.

10) Rewrite your final output

Rewriting your final output from your draft means that you would less likely have any mistakes and your research paper would be clearer and concise as well.

11) Proofread your research paper

Don’t be afraid to proofread for any mistakes in your research paper, these include misspelled words, fragments and runny sentences.

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