Ridiculously Simple Ways

to Improve Your Research Paper

It is easy to improve upon a research paper with just a few simple tricks and resources. When it comes to improving research papers, there is often nothing wrong with a fresh pair of eyes and some tricks up your sleeve that can become go-to tools you can use for a lifetime. Here are four ridiculously useful ways to improve your research paper.

The better the writers and scholars that you read, the better the scholars are that you fill your mind and ear with the phrasing of—the better your writing will sound and be as well. Also, using quotes from high caliber writings will take the tone and scholarship of your essay up as well.

Make sure you have a clearly stated thesis statement

that defines exactly what you are setting about to prove or argue.

Skilled teachers will allow their students to use the “I thesis statement as undergraduates and all graduate teachers do because they assume that you are writing more original scholarship. Either way, “I” thesis statements are easier to write with and you can edit those out later. For example, let’s say you begin with an I thesis like “In this paper, I will argue that there should be more funding for homeless shelters available in every state in the U.S.” You can later amend this to “There needs to be more funding for the homeless—especially the construction of homeless shelters—in every state in this nation. “

Use Topic Sentences to Consistently Reinforce Your Thesis.

Use strong topic sentences that tie your topic consistently to your thesis statement, and reinforce it. You can actually use these topic sentences to move you, step by step through your research paper. However, rather than doing something predictable like saying “The first reason why” or “Firstly” – tried to avoid such predictability. It creates a very dull paper for your reader. Experiment with better topic sentence writing or look up help with topic sentence creation tutorials online. If you have to use the First, Second, third phrasing to get you started – fine. However, you can edit it out later with more imaginative phrasing.

Learn to Introduce and Interweave Quotes

Learn this Now and Your Research Papers Will Always Get A-Plusses

The most essential part of a research paper is the way you weave in your research. Learning to introduce your quotes is a wonderful way to take your writing up ten notches. For example, don’t just say, Smith says that “quote.” But try introductory phrases such as

As Smith asserts, “Every school should begin teaching students how to get the most out of the web educationally” (cite).

As Smith contends, “Today’s YouTube, for example, can teach students everything from how to load line on a Weed Eater, to how to master Quantum Physics” (cite).

Use Good Resources—No Internet Fluff—and Your Paper Will Sound More Professional As Well

Also, using quotes from high caliber writings will take the tone and scholarship of your essay up as well. Also, featuring these in your research shows that you know how to discern the wheat from the chaff—In other words, how to distinguish quality scholarship from the not-so-quality internet research available to students everywhere today. The key to using good resources is to get your journal articles from highly respected journals and books. In general, you can find out the most respected journals on the Internet—but the best way is to ask your professors or reference librarians to help you locate these. If you are going to use a book in a research paper—use respected presses, such as university presses: University of Illinois, University of Chicago, Harvard University Press, and Yale University Press, just to name a few.

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