research paper guides

Getting A Handle On Research Paper Writing: Learning The Keystones

Good papers are properly organized. This ensures that the presentation of ideas is free from error and reads well. There are many sources that can help you organize your paper properly.

Consider the following issues:

  • The outline is a key component to writing any paper. Most people would never think of building a car without a plan or starting a complex computer program without the manual, and yet so many students fail to write the outline, preparing themselves for the writing of the paper. Without a good outline, your paper will be nothing but a disorganized mess with many weaknesses throughout the text. One of the best ways in which you can construct your plan and make sure your information is organized to the best of your abilities is to have an outline. The outline shows you what structure your paper will take. It shows you what order your arguments are currently in, and gives you a chance to change that order so that the paper works better. The outline stops you from getting sidetracked while you work and ensures you stay on topic at all times. The outline should have all components covered in it from the introduction all the way to the conclusion. By having a great outline, you can maintain linear writing and keep an accurate presentation of your arguments and relevant details.


  • There are many ways in which you can approach your paper. One of the most common methods of organization for a paper is to go chronologically. This is an advantageous method in that it lets you easily organize events or findings. For example: you can organize a plot based on the order of events, or discuss a scientific approach based on the order in which the findings or discoveries took place. The downside is that this approach can often become monotonous and read more like a to-do list. The important and lesser important facts are all there in the same place and the responsibility falls to the reader to determine which factors are the most important. Students will more often than not list the things they find, and leave the reader to figure out which finding is the most important. Remember that you can of course use this method or organization for your paper, but you do not want to let the chronological nature of the organizational structure act as a substitute for a thorough analysis.