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Research Paper Outline

Writing A Research Paper Outline

The research paper outline is both a plan for the report you will write about your research and an organized description of your research findings.

The research paper outline: the shape of things to come!

Your research paper should be shaped like an hourglass. It begins with an introduction, which starts with a broad discussion of your literature review (both supportive and opposing views) and ends in your specific hypothesis statement. Your paper continues with tight, concise Method and Result sections​. It concludes with the Discussion section, explaining your findings and comparing and/or contrasting them to the research study results discussed in your introduction section. A statement on the applicability of your research and recommendations for future research complete your paper.

According to top essay writing service​ an outline is a tool to assist you in organizing and writing your research paper. Keep the following in mind when you are writing and using your outline:

·  An outline is a tool that organizes your material. It shapes your information into a pattern you can understand and follow as you write your paper. Since your ideas are already logically arranged, the actual writing of your paper will be much easier.

·  You can choose the amount of material you want to include in your outline. Obviously the more detailed your outline is, the easier it will be to write the first draft of your paper. Choose the amount of detail that best suits your own writing style. Use dissertation help​ to find more reliable sources for your paper.​

·  Keep in mind that an outline is just a preliminary plan. Since writing is a creative process, your outline and paper will change and improve as you gain more knowledge on your research topic.


The outline you choose, formal or informal, is a matter of personal preference. Use the format best suited for your writing style and needs.

·  An informal outline lists the major categories of ideas for the paper under section headings. Specific facts and phrases from your notes would be listed below the category subheadings.

·  A formal outline follows a standard format that subdivides categories of information. Each category is designated by different letters and numbers and by separate headings. As the importance of the category decreases, its position is moved downward and inward under more important categories.'

After finishing writing an outline don't forget to re-read your paper for grammatical errors. Use a dictionary or a thesaurus as needed. Do a spell-check. Correct all errors that you can spot and improve the overall quality of the paper to the best of your ability. Get someone else to read it over. 

​More resources:

Some Psychology Topic Ideas for You​

Some Topic Ideas for Your Psychology Paper


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