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Research Paper Outline

Building an outline of your paper is definitely an essential element of any writing process. Due to a well-composed outline, you will be able to write a paper that can be easily interpreted by readers. When you write a research a paper, you should keep in mind that it is as important as conducting the research itself. For that matter, you should do your best to write your paper most efficiently.

Irrespectively of your findings or your conclusions, you should put all of that into a logical and coherent write-up. This might be a crucial factor when it comes to grades.

If divide you paper into several parts, it will not be as complicated as it might seem at first sight, which means that you should not be worried about writing research papers. Basically, all the scientific papers have the same structure, and if you want to succeed in writing a scientific piece, you should be familiar with the right structure of a paper. At the same time, it is also necessary to point out that depending on the academic discipline, the principles of paper organization might be different. Every academic institution and every particular instructor may have their own views over what is considered to an acceptable writing standard. For that matter, before getting down to the writing process you should consult you supervisor to find more about the writing strategy.

Layout and Length

Normally, when instructions are obtained a learner will know how long a paper should be, which is generally determined by the word count.

At the same time, you should not take your instructions as something solid as a rock, it is just a guide for you to facilitate the writing process. The word count typically does not include your appendix section as well as citation page. In case you have an intention of writing for a scientific journal,you should consider analyzing outlines of different scientific papers in order to get more insights into the writing process.

In case your final paper seems too complicated and exceeds the word limit, you should not view it as the problem given all the information is relevant and there are not repetitions. Here, you might want to use an appendix section for the information that can be removed from the paper itself, though the clarity of your writing piece should not deteriorate.

On the other hand, your paper can be shorter than indicated in the instructions in case you have included everything you needed as it was given in the instructions. It is much more efficient than if you would try to meet a word count requirement without much thought over the content, as inappropriate content might be penalized for its irrelevance. In case with short papers, it is a good idea to split them into several parts, as this will make your report look more attractive for readers.

Structure of the Paper

As the matter of fact, nearly all the scientific papers can be split into several parts.

Title and Author Page

Whist the title is considered to be the briefest page of your paper you should not underestimate its importance, especially when it is sometimes hard to write appropriately. Here, you should bear in mind that you need to clarify the theme of your paper, but keep the title short and simple. Definitely, this should not be the first step in you writing process, as it happens all the time that you will come up with the most appropriate title for the paper after finishing your writing.

Today, you can take advantage of databases by searching appropriate keywords that should be included in the title. This is of paramount importance if your paper will be published on the Internet.

In the authors section, there should be the name of a writer of the report, as well as the name of your scientific advisor. In case with a team work you should remember to include all the members of a group too.


Your abstract is the most important element of any scientific report, as anyone who is interested in the field of your investigation is likely to read the abstract first. So, it should be as convincing as possible. Here, you will need to make a summary of you findings and indicate what your conclusions are within no more than 200 words.

In order to write it correctly, it might be helpful to consider it as a brief sample of your paper rather than a review. Its goal is to inform other researchers about the content of you article. Naturally, there are several tips on how to write you abstract most efficiently. First and foremost, you should analyze other abstracts and find their peculiarities to write your abstract in the same manner.


This section appears to be a division of sections in respect to their page numbers. If your paper is short, then there is no need to include a page of contents at all, as it is not obligatory for a research paper to have a page of contents.


Here you will need to provide the documented piece of your research with your experiment in the background. When writing an introduction, you should keep in mind that your article might be read by those scientists who are not experts in your subject field.

For that matter, you should be careful when talking about the research that led to your experiment and involve appropriate citations. It is also vital to indicate your motivation that is why you actually undertook this research. Even though it is sometimes viewed as somewhat old-fashioned, it is better to indicate a hypothesis statement within the introduction of your paper, as your readers should exactly know what point you going to prove in your research.


This section of your paper should be devoted to the description of the research methods applied in the course of the experiment. If it’s appropriate you should consider including here the location as well as equipment used in the process alongside with the research techniques.

The concept of the description of methodology is that this section will help other researchers to replicate your experiment without any guesswork. In case with field experiments, you need to provide particular map references as well as the time of your experiment within the appendix section. Provided machinery was involved into the process, it is also the point that should be indicated. At the same time, you should not provide too many details, which will overdose your report with unnecessary peculiarities. Instead, you may include them in the appendix section.


In this section, you will have to indicate a brief synopsis of the main facts, statistical data as well as figures that were obtained within you experiment. Here should be only the main details that constitute the bulk of your experiment.

You should provide only those tables and graphs that add clarity to your research. Importantly, you should not exaggerate with a large number of graphs and tables that display the results. Each table or graph should be properly referenced and discussed across the text of your paper.

Don’t include those tables and graphs that provide all but the same data and are not actually relevant to the research. Which is why, you should provide only those ones that demonstrate the results most efficiently.

When putting articles into your articles, they should be concise and be no more than a half of a page. All the graphical information needs to be numbered properly, while diagrams, illustrations and tables should have the references across the body of your report.

It is important not to include too many graphs and table, as the majority of scientists are not really into statistics and prefer to see whether your findings are important enough. Instead, the calculations are better to be placed in the appendix.


This section appears to be the fundamental section of your whole paper as well as the result of your hard work. In the course of your discussion, you need to describe your results as well as indicate how much they are different from the results you expected. Basically, you need to demonstrate whether your hypothesis was proved, or whether it wasn’t. Across this section, it is better to be critical of yourself, as you will not obtain low grades for dissatisfying results, instead most importantly it is the failure to recognize the faults of your research that might result in poor grades.

Anyone who has ever written a scientific paper is supposed to deliver presentation of the work, which means that you will present your results of an experiment to the audience. Unless you give the recognition of the flaws, your presentation is likely to be negatively accepted by the audience.

Actually, there is only a scarce number of fully correct experiments in term of conception and design, therefore, you should not put too much value to the results of your research, instead it is the significance that is appreciated most. Typically, you will obtain a number of potential results as well as some that actually did not come up with your expectations.

It is a good idea to discuss why some things might have gone in the wrong direction as well as what the possible solutions are. In addition, you should provide suggestions of what changes are possible and can actually build upon the results. Most importantly, it is necessary to indicate that there is no such a thing as right or wrong, there is only progress.

Summary and Conclusion

In simple terms, this section can be viewed as a more concise variant of your abstract. Within as short as only a few paragraphs, you can indicate the summary of your results. Of course, you have briefly indicated that in your abstract, but in case with longer reports your readers might fail to absorb all your findings to the full.


In this section you are expected to include all of the references you have used.


It is all about the acknowledgment of anyone who assisted in writing a report. Here, you should thank your supervisor along with other people involved.


The section is useful as it provides a place to dwell on the raw material and other calculations. At the same time, they should be laid out appropriately with relevant data and references to the main part of work.

Tips mentioned above will provide insights for anyone who is having a hard time writing a scientific paper. In fact, it is not as difficult as it might seem at first, you simply need to conduct your research and follow the guidelines of your supervisor.

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