There are lots of types of research papers out there and each of them comes with its own particularities. Furthermore, based on the type of paper you have to complete, you will need to adopt a specific approach. Simply put, it takes a bit of education before getting to work. Moreover, your professor should tell you upfront about what kind of research paper you need.
Here are some of the most popular types of papers, as well as what they involve.
The argumentative paper
The argumentative research paper must approach a controversial topic. The more controversial it is, the more you can argue on it. Its main role is to introduce the reader to two different sides of the story. Choose your issue carefully though – you want it to be controversial, but you do not want it to be offensive.
For a successful approach, make sure you get credible sources, quotes, and facts from both sides of the issue. As for the conclusion, it does not mean that you have to go in one direction or another. Instead, you can present the pluses and minuses of each side.
Some expect the author to pick sides. This is a misconception only. You must be objective and leave emotions behind. Your point of view is irrelevant – instead, you must describe both sides of the issue in an equal manner.
The definition paper
A definition research paper is quite self-explanatory. Again, your emotions and ideas are irrelevant in the story, as you must focus on a topic from a factual point of view. It is important to understand the direction of such a paper. You will find and include facts from a plethora of sources, but you do not have to analyze the information.
The lack of experience can push you in an unwanted direction. You will inevitably feel like discussing the paper from a personal perspective, but this is a mistake. Instead, you are supposed to present facts and perhaps get the battlefield ready for further arguments.
The cause and effect paper
This is one of the most popular types of research papers. You need to analyze the expected and potential results from a specific action. There is one thing you need to focus on through – the progression must be logical. Your reader or professor must be able to go through your paper without too much hassle – every action must be logically followed.
This type of research paper is more common in education and business. You will need to underline the potential results from a specific action, but you can also introduce the reader to a different array of results that may arise from it.
The analytical paper
An analytical paper involves analyzing information from a wide plethora of sources. However, make sure you do not miss the main purpose of this paper. You need to analyze these facts from an objective point of view. You must perform the analysis based on facts and never on your own opinions or others’ ideas.
In other words, you can focus on facts, findings, or methodology. You can also get conclusions from other writers, but at the end of the day, the work must leave room for further studies. Keeping its objective is probably the biggest challenge in the process.
The compare and contrast paper
The compare and contrast research paper will compare two different aspects in the same industry. For example, you can compare two rappers in the music industry, two thoughts of world-renowned philosophers, two types of leadership in business, or two points of view in social sciences. In other words, such research papers can target every industry out there.
Both elements you compare must be described, but the main profile of your paper involves the actual comparison. You need to provide contrasting elements in order to underline the difference.
As a short final conclusion, these are some of the most popular types of research papers out there. The list is long, but chances are you will fall into one of these categories with your assignment. Make sure you have a plan before starting the work and focus on the main profile of the type of paper you have, rather than a personal opinion.