Parts of a research paper thesis

The discussion will always connect to the introduction by way of the research questions or hypotheses you posed and the literature you reviewed, but the discussion does not simply repeat or rearrange the first parts of your paper; the discussion clearly explain how your study advanced the reader's understanding of the research problem from where you left them at the end of your review of prior research.


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Annesley, Thomas M. The discussion section is often considered the most important part of your research paper because this is where you:. Annesley Thomas M.

What Is Analytical Research Paper? An Overview

San Francisco Edit, General Rules. These are the general rules you should adopt when composing your discussion of the results :. The Content. The content of the discussion section of your paper most often includes :. Organization and Structure. Keep the following sequential points in mind as you organize and write the discussion section of your paper:. Overall Objectives. The objectives of your discussion section should include the following: I. Briefly reiterate the research problem or problems you are investigating and the methods you used to investigate them, then move quickly to describe the major findings of the study.

You should write a direct, declarative, and succinct proclamation of the study results, usually in one paragraph. Consider the likelihood that no one has thought as long and hard about your study as you have. Systematically explain the underlying meaning of your findings and state why you believe they are significant. If applicable, begin this part of the section by repeating what you consider to be your most significant or unanticipated finding first, then systematically review each finding.

Otherwise, follow the general order you reported the findings in the results section. Relate the Findings to Similar Studies. No study in the social sciences is so novel or possesses such a restricted focus that it has absolutely no relation to previously published research.

The discussion section should relate your results to those found in other studies, particularly if questions raised from prior studies served as the motivation for your research. This is important because comparing and contrasting the findings of other studies helps to support the overall importance of your results and it highlights how and in what ways your study differs from other research about the topic.

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4 Parts of the Thesis | Project Reporting Instructions

Note that any significant or unanticipated finding is often because there was no prior research to indicate the finding could occur. If there is prior research to indicate this, you need to explain why it was significant or unanticipated. Consider Alternative Explanations of the Findings. It is important to remember that the purpose of research in the social sciences is to discover and not to prove. When writing the discussion section, you should carefully consider all possible explanations for the study results, rather than just those that fit your hypothesis or prior assumptions and biases.

This is especially important when describing the discovery of significant or unanticipated findings. Note any unanswered questions or issues your study did not address and describe the generalizability of your results to other situations. If a limitation is applicable to the method chosen to gather information, then describe in detail the problems you encountered and why.


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Make Suggestions for Further Research. You may choose to conclude the discussion section by making suggestions for further research [this can be done in the overall conclusion of your paper]. Although your study may offer important insights about the research problem, this is where you can address other questions related to the problem that remain unanswered or highlight previously hidden questions that were revealed as a result of conducting your research.

You should frame your suggestions by linking the need for further research to the limitations of your study [e. NOTE: Besides the literature review section, the preponderance of references to sources is usually found in the discussion section. A few historical references may be helpful for perspective, but most of the references should be relatively recent and included to aid in the interpretation of your results or used to link to similar studies.

If a study that you cited does not support your findings, don't ignore it--clearly explain why your research findings differ from theirs. Problems to Avoid. Analyzing vs.

How to write a research methodology

Department of English Writing Guide. George Mason University; Discussion. Department of Biology. Bates College; Hess, Dean R. University College Writing Centre. University of Toronto; Sauaia, A. Lund Research Ltd. The Writing Center. Writing the Discussion. Writing in Psychology course syllabus. University of Florida; Yellin, Linda L. A Sociology Writer's Guide. Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon, Interpretation is a subjective exercise. As such, you should always approach the selection and interpretation of your findings introspectively and to think critically about the possibility of judgmental biases unintentionally entering into discussions about the significance of your work.

With this in mind, be careful that you do not read more into the findings than can be supported by the evidence you have gathered. Remember that the data are the data: nothing more, nothing less. MacCoun, Robert J. Don't Write Two Results Sections! One of the most common mistakes that you can make when discussing the results of your study is to present a superficial interpretation of the findings that more or less re-states the results section of your paper.

Before you begin the draft, go to any site which cannot be edited by online users; keep in mind Wikipedia and Quora are not considered good academic sources. You need to conduct a study even before you develop the beginning of your paper. A title has to be selected wisely after you decide on the topic. Going back to the process of choosing resources, it is critical to keep in mind that any credible material has all rights reserved.

When there is copyright, you need permission to cite the source before printing out every page of your final version.

How to Write a Research Paper Introduction

Being a student, you might not receive such approval. You need to reference the sources you use correctly in your text to avoid problems. There are many sites where you can find excellent paper topics if your teacher does not assign a specific subject. On the internet, you can see the best literature resources as well.


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  6. When choosing the topic and relevant information, have a look at the date. It is recommended to use the most up-to-date sources: please do not select sources that are older than five years. The data provided by them may be outdated. Unreliable sources may contain false information.

    Research Paper Sections

    We can write a separate page on how to select sources correctly, but this article has a focus on the general rules of writing a research paper. You have come up with the title page and the main idea so far. You have defined your target audience. You have collected the necessary information using credible sources: books, textbooks, academic journals, newspapers, etc.