The important parts of research papers

A research paper document consists of various parts or sections. Some of the structural parts of research papers are mandatory for all projects and some others are optional and needs to be included only when demanded. An accurate idea of which all parts are mandatory and which all are optional is necessary while handling research paper projects.

The mandatory components of a research paper

Parts of a Research PaperOut of the various parts of a research paper, the mandatory ones are to be included in all research papers alike. The format and the structure of those components remain more or less the same in all assignments. But the content is to be determined depending upon the nature and type of your research paper. Listed below, are the mandatory components of a research paper.

• The title page – Provides information on the title of the paper, the author, the course, the professor and the date of submission.

• The introduction – Introduces the topic, explains the scope of the topic and the nature of research and states the thesis of the paper. Also discusses the methodology used, if a separate methodology chapter is not included.

• The body paragraphs – Elaborates on the topic, discusses the main points, justifies the argument, presents the evidence and proves the point. A minimum of three body paragraphs are to be included in all research papers. You may include more, if necessary, depending on the page limit.

• The conclusion – Summarizes the main points for the audience and reinstates the theory stated in the introduction. The last line must indicate that the discussion has come to an end, for the time-being. You can also suggest the possibilities of further research on the topic, if it suits the nature of your research paper.

• The bibliography – Provides complete information on the sources. Must be formatted as per the rules of the documentation format you are using.

The optional components of a research paper

There are many components which are optional for academic research papers. The inclusion of those components depends upon the objective of the research paper and sometimes, the preferences of the instructor. You need to include them only if it has specifically been asked for. If in doubt, do check with your instructor if any of the optional parts of research papers must be included in that particular project. Some of the optional research paper components are the literature review, the abstract and the methodology chapter. The literature review impassively discusses the previous researches conducted on the topic and the current status of the topic in the research field. The abstract summarizes the research paper for quick reference and the methodology chapter describes the methodology which was employed for research and the tools and instruments used for the study.

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