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How to Start a Research Paper

How to Start a Research Paper

How to Start a Research Paper
Table of Content

A research paper can be divided into three categories: persuasive or argumentative if the conclusion is argued by you, expository when information is explained by you, and analytical when analysis of specific information is presented by you.

Following is the process on how to start a Research paper


  • Choose a topic
  • Read and keep records
  • Form a thesis
  • Create a mind map or outline
  • Read again
  • Rethink your thesis
  • Draft the body
  • Revise
  • Add the beginning and end
  • Proofread and edit

A brief explanation of all the points mentioned in the process: 

  • Choosing a topic

Information, focus, and interest - If you select a topic according to your interest, it will be more pleasant and result in information to retain aptly. Find a path or way that matches your interest whenever a general topic is given to you. To determine the given topic, you might have to do some preliminary research to find adequate information. Now, narrow down your research according to the particular niches related to the main topic to bring better results.

So, decide a topic that has enough information or select the topic whose information is readily available. And, if information regarding the given subject is challenging to find, then you should find another topic instead of wasting time on that particular topic.

  • Preliminary reading & recordkeeping 

You should read a general article, for example, from an encyclopedia you can read your given topic. You should record all the publication information like the article, author and book title on the notebook or an index card, in the correct format (for example, APA or MLA) stated by the instructor. Later, to distinguish between information like paraphrasing and quotes which you have copied, you should use quotation marks so that the work becomes easy.

The students use particularly small notebooks and index cards throughout the process of writing and researching. It allows them incredible flexibility, helps them in keeping track of sources. Also, it will enable them to arrange them in re-organizing and organizing manner. Others identify groups of facts or otherwise colour-code. Later, while drafting the paper, use that method which will work for you at the best level but always starts with the best recordkeeping.

  • Organizing an Outline or mind map

Draw up an outline or working mind map based on the preliminary reading which you have already done. The chosen topic should be that which Includes many important or provocative points, including interesting ideas according to you. A mind map may even include questions. And, it is also less linear to find answers, and it is logically relevant. You should only choose the method that works best for you.

In reasonably related or similar groups, the ideas are grouped simply by the objects. You should revise the outline or mind map, which leads to easy recognition of the paper by adding sections or crossing out the outline or a mind map. It should be done immediately after writing because later, it became hard to start over. So you should choose only that method which will work best for you.

  • Formulating thesis craftsmanship and Focus

Four to five points thesis statement should be written in well-defined and in a very focused way. This statement should be crafted into one or two sentences as it will supervise the development and direction of the entire paper written by you.

  • Researching Examples and facts

In this step, Heavy-duty research should be started by you. Materials like electronic databases, internet, newspaper articles, references books and books for a balance of sources should be tried. Write down on a notebook or an index card, the publication information for each source which will be needed for bibliography (APA) or works cited(MLA) page by you. Write essential details, points, and examples always differentiating between paraphrasing and direct quotes.

Always remember that general opinion is less valid than an expert option as you read it. And for many topics (for example in history and science) more recent probe may be more useful than the older exploration. On the internet too heavily reply should be avoided, which differs widely in authority and quality. It even disappears sometimes before you are reading your paper. You should never copy directly from the internet sources and paste into any specific draft of your computer.

  • Rethinking Matching thesis and mind map

Revise or expand the working of an outline or mind map should be there after deeply and collected plenty of information by adding explanations, information, and examples according to you or which could be best suitable according to you. Each of the main points should be developed in the direction aimed by you(they should be spelt out in the thesis statement by you). If the development of these points is based on evenly than, you should return to the library if you need any additional information.

You can also revise the thesis statement accordingly to reflect better the direction of the paper or what has been learned by you seems to have taken.

  • Drafting Beginning in the middle

Starting the thesis statement with the writing of the paper’s body and ignoring the introduction part now. Your thesis details should use supporting detail systematically and logically to validate. For now, the conclusion should also be omitted.

  • Revising Attribution and Organization

After reading, change and make sure that all ideas are organized according to you, and your thesis statement should be supported by it. Revise the thesis statement if you think it is allowed or take it out if any paragraph does not. The paragraph must be accurately paraphrased and quoted. You should check that it has acknowledged the sources. Also, check the paraphrasing written by you. There should be attribution to the owner for the result of methodical reasoning or personal epiphany that did not come to your mind in every single idea.

  • Writing Intro, conclusion, and citations

Concluding or ultimate draft should be written. The first paragraph should be of introduction, and the last section should be of termination. Usually, the thesis statement appears as the last sentence or introductory paragraph as two of the first. The thesis statement that is written by you should not be restated in conclusion.

  • Proofreading Objectivity and time

Elapse should be allowed for a few days for time permitting between the time you begin to make the final correction and the time you finish writing the last draft according to you. It will become more perceptive by this "time out". Finally, check the punctuation, grammar, correct word choice, smooth and adequate transitions, sentence variety and sentence structure.

In general, here’s the structure to follow:

  • The research paper has to start with the first paragraph that should include a general sentence that introduces all the topics or introduces the background of the topic.
  • Related to the topic issue should be mentioned by you two in order or in the next sentence to narrow the introduction down to the research paper's thesis written by you.
  • In your introduction, the last sentence should be the thesis of the paper that in one sentence your paper should be summarized
  • Guidelines of the research should be read
  • With authority, there should be speaking about the topic

Gather resource material from:

Google Scholar, Online encyclopedias, almanacks, and databases, books and periodicals, Newspapers, Government publications, guides, and reports

Rules for writing a research paper:

  • The writer with experience in writing a research paper should be assigned with expertise in the topics that are selected
  • In the paper use carefully reliable, picked and up-to-date sources
  • Use new journal articles and recently printed materials to make sure that the sources worn in the paper are relevant and reliable
  • Never extract documents and anonymous contents for research
  • Primary sources should be used that deliver information and authentic data
  • Avoid the use of unreliable sources that have conceptual mistakes
  • Sites like a wiki that is also unreliable should be ignored
  • The topic must be appropriate
  • The topic must be approved by the professor
  • Narrowed down should be the process of the paper in the topic
  • In the paper, the question should be answered and relate to the topic.


So while starting research paper keep in mind some useful tips:

  • Choose a research paper topic that should be interesting and should be a feasible subject
  • You should limit your area of research
  • You should get your professor’s approval before starting your work
  • Topic should be engaging and should be a reasonable subject
  • It would be best if you defined your area of research
  • Examples and facts should be researched
  • Insert a quote or an anecdote
  • Include a literature review
  • Make a brilliant intro
  • Cite your all the sources
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