Steps and Resources for Writing a Research Paper

This article has useful guidelines that will help students write impactful and effective research papers and earn a good grade in the process. In the article, we provide resources and steps for writing a strong research paper.


The following steps are useful in writing an effective and impactful research paper by starting with a prompt or assignment and end up with a well-grounded paper.

  • Familiarize yourself with the assignment. This first step is obvious yet significant in understanding the requirements of your teacher. The majority of the students fail this initial step and end up with low grades.
  • Select a topic. Having understood your teacher’s requirements, then go ahead and choose an appropriate topic that meets the requirements. Choose a topic you are passionate about and generates a lot of interest.
  • Research. People have different strategies for researching the selected topic. However, remember to move fast and pay attention to the task since you still need to write your paper.
  • Plan your research. Get a plan on how you will attack your research. Different students or teachers have different preferences.
  • Formulate your thesis. Once you fully understand your assignment requirements and have selected an appropriate topic;
    Together with adequate research and a concise plan, then articulate your assertion, argument, and opinion.
  • Develop an outline. Similar to the bibliography, the structure of your outline depends on the assignment. If an outline is part of the requirements, then create one.
  • Write. This step is about writing your research paper. The other steps are essential in ensuring that you write an interesting, clear, and strong research paper.
  • Edit the content of your paper. It is a milestone to have the initial draft of your research paper ready. However, it is not yet ready for you to submit. It is now time that you check the correctness of your content.
  • Edit the grammar. Apart from editing the content, it is essential that you also edit the grammar. To complete grammar editing, many tools are available on your way.
  • Re-read your paper before submitting. After editing content and grammar, the final task of proofreading is necessary. Depending on the available time, you can spend a day or an hour. Proofreading is effective with a printed copy.


  1. Your teacher. Before you write the assignment, consider your teacher’s objective. Essay assignments are an opportunity for students to learn or perfect their skills.
  2. Research librarians. Research librarians are an essential human resource when doing research. Apart from tons of online materials and books, University and college libraries have personnel who can help answer research questions.
  3. Writing centers. Many University and college libraries do have writing centers. Staffs in writing centers are resourceful when it comes to your research paper’s actual writing since they are vast with many writing requirements.
  4. Wikipedia is a useful resource for writing the introduction of a research paper. However, you should exercise caution when using Wikipedia since anyone can edit and even publish content.
  5. Academic repositories. Some teachers or professors prefer that their students get their literature from peer-reviewed journals. University and college students have access to many academic databases that publish peer-reviewed papers.
  6. Grammarly. It is a powerful spell checker tool. For those who use the Chrome browser, this tool comes with an extension that allows users to write easily. To make it even better, you can paste your paper content to Grammarly editor, have grammar and spelling checked, and advise spelling and grammar.

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