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Parts Of A Research Paper And Their Definition

There is no one right style or manner for writing an education paper. Content aside, the writing style and presentation of papers in different educational fields vary greatly. Nevertheless, certain parts are common to most papers, for example:

Title/Cover Page

Contains the paper's title, the author's name, address, phone number, e-mail, and the day's date.

Abstract
Not every education paper requires an abstract. However, for longer, more complex papers abstracts are particularly useful. Often only 100 to 300 words, the abstract generally provides a broad overview and is never more than a page. It describes the essence, the main theme of the paper. It includes the research question posed, its significance, the methodology, and the main results or findings. Footnotes or cited works are never listed in an abstract. Remember to take great care in composing the abstract. It's the first part of the paper the instructor reads. It must impress with a strong content, good style, and general aesthetic appeal. Never write it hastily or carelessly.
 

Introduction and Statement of the Problem

A good introduction states the main research problem and thesis argument. What precisely are you studying and why is it important? How original is it? Will it fill a gap in other studies? Never provide a lengthy justification for your topic before it has been explicitly stated.
 

Limitations of Study

Indicate as soon as possible what you intend to do, and what you are not going to attempt. You may limit the scope of your paper by any number of factors, for example, time, personnel, gender, age, geographic location, nationality, and so on.
 

Methodology

Discuss your research methodology. Did you employ qualitative or quantitative research methods? Did you administer a questionnaire or interview people? Any field research conducted? How did you collect data? Did you utilize other libraries or archives? And so on.

Literature Review
The research process uncovers what other writers have written about your topic. Your education paper should include a discussion or review of what is known about the subject and how that knowledge was acquired. Once you provide the general and specific context of the existing knowledge, then you yourself can build on others' research. The guide Writing a Literature Review will be helpful here.

 

Main Body of Paper/Argument

This is generally the longest part of the paper. It's where the author supports the thesis and builds the argument. It contains most of the citations and analysis. This section should focus on a rational development of the thesis with clear reasoning and solid argumentation at all points. A clear focus, avoiding meaningless digressions, provides the essential unity that characterizes a strong education paper.

Conclusion

After spending a great deal of time and energy introducing and arguing the points in the main body of the paper, the conclusion brings everything together and underscores what it all means. A stimulating and informative conclusion leaves the reader informed and well-satisfied. A conclusion that makes sense, when read independently from the rest of the paper, will win praise.

Works Cited/Bibliography
See the Bibliography section.

Appendices
Education research papers often contain one or more appendices. An appendix contains material that is appropriate for enlarging the reader's understanding, but that does not fit very well into the main body of the paper. Such material might include tables, charts, summaries, questionnaires, interview questions, lengthy statistics, maps, pictures, photographs, lists of terms, glossaries, survey instruments, letters, copies of historical documents, and many other types of supplementary material. A paper may have several appendices. They are usually placed after the main body of the paper but before the bibliography or works cited section. They are usually designated by such headings as Appendix A, Appendix B, and so on.

Here are examples of 3 common types of titles
  • Question: Can PF Correction Increase Profits?
  • Summary: Design and Testing of a Small Power Company
  • 2-Part: Power System Operation: How to Survive an Emergency

Abstract
The abstract is a short (about 100-500 word) summary of the entire paper. It should include: goals and objectives, results, and conclusions. It is usually one of the last parts of the paper to be written.

Introduction
The introduction also has three main purposes. First, it provides background and motivation for your topic (usually includes a review of current literature on the topic). Second, it describes the focus and purpose of the paper you are writing. Third, it gives an overview of what is contained in the paper's various sections.

Methods/Procedure
This section describes what you did, how you did it, gives strategies, sample calculations, diagrams and circuits, and descriptions of equipment. The goal here is to give the reader sufficient inforamation to be able to repeat your work if desired. (Of course some "standard techniques" can be simply referenced).

Results
This section is where you prove your point with the data. Give graphs and tables of costs, profits, whatever your data is. Also give some description or guide to help the reader recognize your important points.

Conclusions/Discussion
Here you state what your learned or proved. What are the "take home messages" or major accomplishments of this work? You may also describe interesting observations, new questions, and future work here.

Bibliography
A list of the references you used in the work & writing the paper.

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