How to Write a Research Paper
In the previous blog we learnt that: –
The purpose of an academic research writing was to push forward the boundaries of knowledge was true justified belief. In some instances one may choose an academic writing service or write the paper himself from this we learnt a simplified scientific process: –
- Observe something that can’t be explained by our current knowledge.
- Provide a suggested explanation for this phenomenon… we call this suggested explanation a
- Test the hypothesis to find out if it is really true.
We also learnt that to write our own research paper we will be expected to critically evaluate other research papers and this requires: –
- an evaluation of research methods,
- evaluating the discussion of results
- and evaluating the conclusions reached.
All of this requires a deeper understanding of: –
- Research theory
- how research should be conducted and
- the importance of experiments and experimental design.
This chapter aims to expand our understanding of research theory and to discuss the basics of experimental design. This will enable us to understand more about what we see when we look at research papers.
We will come back and look at the subject of experimental design in more detail later so we can understand more about how to critically evaluate research.
For now, our purpose is just to ensure we understand enough research theory so we can understand what we are looking for when we read research papers.
By the end of this chapter you will be able to.
- Understand the principles behind good research
- Understand some of the ways research can be conducted
- Explain some of the ways research can be flawed.
Academic research writing consists of 15 sections: -.
- .. .an analogy
- Scientific Method
- Scientific Principles
- Controlled Experiments
- Empirical Research
- Basic Research Criteria
- Basic Research vs Applied Research
- Qualitative vs Quantitative Research
- Project Types
- Alternatives to Laboratory Based Experiments
- Data used to Generate a Hypothesis cannot be Used to Verify the Hypothesis
- Testing the Null Hypothesis
- Testing Our Understanding of the Concepts
- Flawed Research
Research…. an analogy
Our discussion so far states that the aim of research is to push forward the boundaries of human knowledge.
And that to do this we must: –
- Observe something that can’t be explained by current knowledge.
- Provide a suggested explanation for this. hypothesis… and
- test the hypothesis to find out if our explanation is really true.
If are making a contribution to human knowledge it implies we are not working in isolation but are basing our work on existing work.
We want to add a piece of knowledge to the existing body of human knowledge.
By analogy we are trying to build a wall. To do this we need to: –
- know where to place the next brick.
- and we need to test the brick we are putting in the wall to ensure it is strong enough
Knowing where to place the next brick implies we must first read some research papers. Research papers show where the current gaps in our knowledge are.
Ensuring our brick is strong enough, implies we are testing our claims for knowledge, via experimentation or other form of proof, to ensure the claims we make are accurate and won’t be disproven by future researchers who are building on top of our part of the wall.
We need to do this testing in a rigorous, scientific, professional and competent way… so Other researchers who are evaluating our research, e.g. others like you who maybe writing a research paper, will recognize the validity of our work
If we don’t conduct our research in a competent way other researchers will identify our mistakes and cast doubt on our conclusions. To prevent this, we need to follow a sound scientific method
Either way researchers will evaluate our work and make a contribution to knowledge by confirming the validity of our conclusions or by highlighting issues/problems.