How to Write a Research Paper - A Research Guide for Students

 

formal outline for research paper

Research Paper Outline Examples; Most college students or teachers who are majoring in social sciences, such as Psychology, Sociology, History, Linguistics, use the American Psychological Association or APA guidelines for writing research papers and assignments in this field of study. Other fields of study also use the APA format but not. an outline that serves as a guide to your paper for your reader. If you haven't already been making formal outlines, this outline will be a formal version of your previous notes; it lays out your main points and subpoints for your reader. Generally, this kind of outline uses conventions of formal outlining: Roman numerals, letters and indentations. APA research paper outline should typically have a title page, abstract, main body, and references. An ideal abstract should be between and words. The titles of journals, books, etc., must be italicized. Read on for more.


How to Write an Outline for a Research Paper (with Pictures)


This is a formal outline for your final research paper. It will present your thesis, the major points in support of that thesis, and the sub-points supporting each major point. It may have additional levels of sub-sub-points if you feel that is necessary. The basic idea of a formal outline is that different types of letters or numbers I, A, 1, formal outline for research paper, a, i represent different formal outline for research paper of the hierarchy of your paper, and sub-levels are indented below main levels.

For example:. The reader should be able to see at a glance which are the main points, which are the secondary points, which are at the third level of importance, and so on. It should also be obvious which secondaery points belong under which main points. Usually this is accomplished by using different numbering for different levels, and indenting the less important levels. Formal outline for research paper follow those guidelines when writing your outline.

There are two major types of outline: Topic Outline Sentence Outline A topic outline lists words or phrases. A sentence outline lists complete sentences. A topic outline arranges your ideas hierarchically showing which are main and which are sub-pointsin the sequence you want, and shows what you will talk about.

As the name implies, it identifies all the little mini-topics that your paper will comprise, formal outline for research paper, and shows how they relate. A sentence outline does all of this, plus it shows exactly what you will say about each mini-topic. Each sentence, formal outline for research paper, instead of simply identifying a mini-topic, is like a mini-thesis statement about that mini-topic. It expresses the specific and complete idea that that section of the paper will cover as part of proving the overall thesis.

Your sentence outline should, if done thoroughly and carefully, represent almost a first draft of your research paper. The purpose, in other words, of doing this work is not to make work for you, but to save you work in the long run by breaking the job down into smaller, manageable tasks.

A paper of 12 pages about 4, words might have four major topics or points, represented by roman numerals I - IV in the outline. This would mean each point would represent about three pages of the final paper. These three pages will include background information, multiple sources, different pieces of evidence and explanation supporting that point, and often a brief description of alternative formal outline for research paper and an explanation of why those views are not so convincing.

Finally, even smaller points under these might correspond to individual paragraphs in the final draft. First make sure which are main and which are supporting points.

For example, formal outline for research paper, you may find that what you thought was a main point is really part of proving another main point. Or, what you first listed under a main point may need its own section. This may change as you continue to work on the outline and draft the paper.

Now you can decide what order you want to present your ideas in. Again, label them with letters or numbers to indicate the sequence. Try out at least two different sequences. You may find that your thesis suddenly snaps into focus, or that points that seemed unrelated in fact belong together, or that what you thought was a main idea is actually a supporting idea for another point. You can do this at every stage of the writing process, and especially at the organization stage. Remember to include a thesis statement at the start formal outline for research paper the outline, and cite and list your sources.

In addition to the elements of a formal outline, please also: Include a thesis statement at the start. Cite your sources: list all authors used in each section in parentheses at the end of that section Attach a list of sources that includes all the sources used for the outline and no others. This list may differ from the one you submitted for the Preliminary Bibliography, if you have added new sources or eliminated old ones.

The method described below will produce a sentence outline. Writing the Sentence Outline Write out your thesis at the top of the page. Make a list of points you must prove to prove your thesis. What would someone have to agree with, in order to agree with the thesis? These will be the main sections of your paper. On a new page, write your first main point. This is the thesis for that section of the paper. Make a list of the points you have to prove to prove that point.

These are your sub-points for that section. Repeat the process for each of your main points.

 

Research Paper Outline Examples

 

formal outline for research paper

 

An outline might be formal or informal. An informal outline (working outline) is a tool helping an author put down and organize their ideas. It is subject to revision, addition and canceling, without paying much attention to form. All points of a research paper outline must relate to the same major topic that you first mentioned in your. Research Paper Outline Examples; Most college students or teachers who are majoring in social sciences, such as Psychology, Sociology, History, Linguistics, use the American Psychological Association or APA guidelines for writing research papers and assignments in this field of study. Other fields of study also use the APA format but not. Research Paper Sentence Outline. Home English Syllabus (DOC file) Davis Oldham FOSS This is a formal outline for your final research paper. It will present your thesis, the major points in support of that thesis, and the sub-points supporting each major point. It may have additional levels of sub-sub-points if you feel.