How to Start a Research Paper

How to Start a Research Paper

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One of the most dreaded assignments is writing a research paper. The majority of the students will struggle with completing such assignments. However, this does not have to be the case. With some practice, anyone can do a well-written research paper. There is no denying that such writing can be a challenge, especially if it is your first time or have very little practice. The more one writes, the less complex they get. How to do a research paper that can be graded as A+ is a struggle many scholars face. Writing a research paper is easy once you study how to do so. In this article, students learn how to start a research paper. It is a crucial skill that one must have to write an essay that scores good marks.

What’s The Assignment All About?

Having the skills of how to write a good research paper will be in vain if you have no clue what the assignment is all about. Therefore, the first thing you do is familiarize yourself with the paper instructions. Your paper must satisfy the requirements for you to score any marks. Take your time to read the research essay instructions thoroughly. Understand all that is required of you before rushing into writing. Things to look at will include:
  • The subject of the paper it will help you determine which topic.
  • The paper timelines to help you set milestones such as when the first draft will be ready or when to submit.
  • Instructions – they will guide create the research paper outline.
In any academic task, the first step is always to go through paper requirements. Missing out on them affects your score. That is because you will end up doing the opposite of what the paper requires of you. Order Now

Getting Down to Business

You now have an understanding of what the paper requires of you. The next step is getting down to business, which means some planning is needed. You are also aware of how much time you have to work on the essay. Getting down to business will require some planning and preparation to ensure that you have all the resources you need to write an excellent research essay. It is at this point that students can explore the different ideas they can write on. They get to brainstorm on which direction they want their research paper to go. Getting down to business is all about preparing yourself psychologically for the task ahead, more like getting yourself ready. Organization lets one manage their time with ease. In writing, time management is an invaluable skill. When learning how to write a research paper, you are advised to split your workload into manageable chunks. As you get down to work, you get to set the timelines for completing the set tasks.

Basics of Writing a Research Paper

There are basics of how to write a research paper. They are rules or principles which guide how one will write the research piece. These standards are same across the board with some differences notable from field to field. Therefore, students can consult past papers for a way forward when they feel stuck. The best way to learn a concept is through practice, and the same applies to writing. Armed with a research paper example and some practice, scholars can quickly master how to write research articles. An aspect students tend to overlook and which impacts the quality of their work, in the end, is how to start a research paper. The start is also challenging but the tips provided below will offer some guidance.

Identify a Suitable Topic

What is the topic of your research essay? It is a question that every student must answer before writing the paper. They need to have some brainstorming before settling on a specific idea. A topic will be identified based on the following:
  • The paper instructions The chosen topic must be in line with the requirements of the paper and subject.
  • Interest Select a title you are enthusiastic about. You can easily adopt an approach that will make the paper interesting and therefore, worth reading.
  • Relevance The topic must relate to readers if you want an audience for your essay.
  • Specific Be specific on the topic. An ambiguous or broad topic will make your writing complicated and probably lack on some of the crucial facts.
  • Understanding Chose an area you understand. Creating content for a topic, you lack understanding often results in low quality work.
  • Therefore, the next time you are wondering how to start a research paper, start with first brainstorming on a topic that will interest both you and the reader.

Do Some Reading

If you have been struggling with how to write a good research paper, maybe you won’t have to do so anymore. The solution is simple, get comfortable with the topic. That way you will not struggle with writing high quality content. Doing some reading can assist with that. After settling on a topic, the next step is to consult literature both old and new for information. You will need facts for and against your main argument, which the reading materials can provide. Reading resources include the following:
  • Reputable online sources such as government and university websites, libraries among others
  • Reputable newspapers and magazines
  • Journals
  • Books
  • Expert interviews
While conducting research, students must take short notes. Importantly, they should note down the sources of literature. A well-written paper will include a list of works cited. It is because scholars must acknowledge the literature they have referred to. If you are unsure of how to go about doing so, check out a research paper example. The notes you take will guide you create the research paper outline.

Come Up With a Thesis Statement

Come up with a thesis statement before you start writing the research essay. A thesis is the main theme of your paper and will act as the blueprint. It ensures that you do not lose focus and therefore stays with the paper objectives. While learning how to do a research paper, you are taught how to formulate a thesis. A good thesis will have the following characteristics:
  • One or two sentences stating facts
  • It will be precise
  • It defines the theme of the article
A research paper example can guide you come up with your thesis statement. Students are advised to come up with several statements before settling on one. Note that the one you choose is not final and you can adjust it as needed.

Create the Research Paper Outline

After you have set your thesis, the next is to develop the research paper outline. The notes you took while collecting relevant material will help create a framework based on the main points of the research essay. However, it should be in line with the basic research paper outline, which means it should be divided into an introduction, body and conclusion. When writing a research paper, the outline is a map which guides the author on what content to include.
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Work On a Captivating Research Essay Introduction

When learning how to write a research paper, you were probably taught the essence of a captivating introduction. To get readers interested in your document, you must have an opening that will get them hooked. The assumption most individuals hold is that a good intro often means the rest of the content is good while the vice versa is true. Therefore, you can have an excellent essay, but because of a poor introduction, you put off the reader.


Learning how to write a good research paper is a step by step process that takes time. A lot of students struggle with research essay writing because they have not mastered the basics. Everything from the introduction to the conclusion must be up to par for the paper to score excellent points. The above tips will help any student master how to start a research paper to help them write good articles.