A Quick Research Paper Planning Guide For Students

Preparation and organisation is an essential part of the writing process if you want to produce a high quality research paper. In fact, a lack of planning at the beginning of the writing process can lead to problems later on related to timing and, ultimately, can lead you to write a piece of work that is lower in quality then you would otherwise be capable of producing.

  • Establish what topic you will write about and which sections to include
  • One of the first things you need to do as part of your planning is to establish what topic you wish to write. Once you have an idea of a title that you wish to use for your essay you will then be able to develop any other sections that will be required, such as the introduction, the body section and the conclusion.

  • Identify what research methods you will want to use
  • As well as identifying any sections that will be required in your paper, you will need to decide what research methods will be most appropriate in order for you to find out the necessary data and information to back up any points that you wish to make.

    Some common research methods include questionnaires, surveys and interviews. Furthermore, the Internet and libraries provide excellent opportunities for students to find relevant information for their essays.

  • Identify times when you will be able to work
  • Once you have an idea of what it is you want to write and how you’re going to complete any research, you will then need to come up with some sort of routine or plan. A good suggestion is to identify what times you will and will not be able to work. For example, it may be that you have certain commitments on certain days, in which case make a note of these so that you are aware of how much time you have prior to the deadline.

  • Allow yourself enough time for breaks and unforeseen events
  • When creating your plan it is essential that you allow enough time for breaks. As tempting as it may be to push yourself to the limits, allowing yourself time to relax and have a break enables the brain to recharge, and ensures that you complete the work efficiently. Equally, you need to allow extra time in case of any unforeseen occurrences, which may otherwise prevent you from meeting the deadline for your piece of work.