Here is a Simple Answer to the Tough Question of “What is a Research Paper?”
Answer to the question of “What is a research paper?” is simple. A research paper is an extended work of writing expressing the findings of an investigative inquiry in to a particular subject area. When writing a research paper, a student should strive to find good literature on the subject area to be reviewed and included in the paper. In a typical essay the focus on existing body of knowledge on the subject area is not prominent as much as in the case of a research paper. Therefore, by understanding the purpose and nature of a research paper, students can perform better in research writing assignments.
Understand the Value of a Research Paper
Research papers should be backed by information derived through authentic and quality research process. High quality research involves gathering reliable, accurate data and information relevant to the topic, from reputable sources. Unlike an essay, a research paper’s value depends mainly on the information and data used for arriving at the conclusions. Some research assignments will call for both secondary and primary research. In such cases, in addition to already published secondary data, you will need to collect primary data from the filed with the use of appropriate data gathering techniques. To write a high caliber research paper, students need to gain practice in the research process. Those of you that engage in small scale research paper writing can sharpen these skills and apply them to the final research paper project that is required to complete a degree program. There are various web sites that offer sample research papers and essays online for you to refer to and gain a better understanding of how to write a research paper and what content are to be included.
Difference between a Research Paper and a Thesis
Learning the difference between a research paper and a thesis is also necessary to answer the question of “What is a research paper?” A thesis and a research paper differ not only in content but in purpose, duration taken to complete, the data gathering methods and the originality of the research question. A thesis paper which is also called a dissertation in some countries is written in order to fulfill the requirements, fully or partially, of an academic qualification such as a Masters or PhD degree. At postgraduate level, it may take two or more semesters to write a comprehensive thesis and it is not uncommon for some PhD candidates to spend many years to complete their theses. On the other hand, a research paper is written in connection with a subject being studied and is much shorter than a thesis. The main focus of research papers would be to synthesize the existing literature with the writer’s own synthesis.
The Main purpose of a Research Paper
Understanding the purpose of research paper is also important when trying to understand what a research paper is. It would be correct to say that this paper is written to support or prove a point expressed as the research question Assignment given for a research paper is in connection with a subject in the study program and the topic selection should be limited to the subject area being studied under the course. Having a strong research question will pave way to writing an interesting and in-depth research paper.
How to Surmount Research Paper Writing Difficulties?
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