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What Are Different Kinds of Research Papers

You’ll be quite surprised when you learn that there exist up to a dozen of essay and research paper types. In most cases throughout five years of studies students have to deal with most types of essays and research papers. Some of them are very common, while others may be written once a semester or a year. Every essay type has certain requirements both to contents and format. In fact, these requirements differentiate various essay types. By the way, if you’re good at writing of one essay type, it does not automatically mean that you’re equally good at writing of other academic papers types.

Research Paper Types
There are several ways on how you can identify the kind of research papers. If you are considering the manner on how you analyze your researched data, the two types of research are quantitative research paper and qualitative. Meanwhile, if you are taking into account the type of voice you are using in discussing your information, the two fundamental kinds of research paper are informative paper and
research paper. Another way of identifying the type of research paper is the research paper topics of choice. ProfEssays.com provides you the four basic types of research papers, depending on the field of study that you have chosen.

Quick Navigation through the Kinds of Research Papers Page:

Argumentative papers

The name speaks for itself. You have to choose a subject matter and present arguments in favor or against a certain issue.  It is desirable that argumentative papers contain as many arguments as possible, including counter-arguments. Besides, you are certainly welcome to present your own arguments, of course if you have knowledge and competence in the chosen area. The most common mistake in writing of argumentative papers is just describing the issue without stating arguments. In order to write a persuasive argumentative paper you have to gather enough material and studies by prominent scholars and experts. If you contrast several arguments you will be able to convince readers.

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Argumentative Paper Format and Structure

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Definition papers

Again, the name speaks for itself. Definition papers should define subject matter. You need to choose a certain issue or a fact/idea and give a full definition of it. Of course you definition should not be limited to 2 or 3 sentences. You have to give as much information about chosen subject as possible. Readers should have no further questions. You have to fully develop the selected topic. Definition papers are as a rule easy to write. But there are certain pitfalls. For example, students are not recommended to express own opinion and use own definitions. Your information should be neutral and you have to refer to expert opinions.

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Definition Called Love

Analytical papers

Professors love analytical papers while students sometimes hate them (analytical papers of course). This type of academic writing implies analysis of facts, events, issues and ideas. Students are welcome to use their analytical skills and this proves to be the biggest problem. It is not difficult to give a definition or describe the issue, but it is sometimes difficult to analyze it. What is meant by analysis? For example, you can think of the way certain scientific issue influences others science branches or how theoretical knowledge is used in real life. If you are assigned with analytical paper you should first look for examples and samples to have a look and writing style and writing methods.

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Compare and contrast papers

The idea behind compare and contrast papers is very simple. You choose 2 (or even more) issues, topics, ideas or events and compare them. This method is used to show pros and cons of certain issues. For example, compare and contrast papers are very popular among history students. What are possible subjects?  Compare and contrast two US presidents. Compare and contrast economic reforms of different periods in US history. Compare and contrast the captivity of two public organizations. In fact, you may have much freedom in writing of this essay type.

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Compare and Contrast Essay Sample

Cause and effect papers

Similar to compare and contrast essays, cause and effect papers also analyze several issues. However, they do it in their own special way. The issues are analyzed in the context of how they appeared or in what way they influence other issues. The typical example of cause and effect essay may be “Impact of world financial crisis on the U.S. economy” or “Preconditions for emergence of feminist movement.” In other words, you research cause and effect ties between various issues.

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Cause and Effect Essay Sample

Reports and interpretive papers

These essay types are very popular among literature students. Interpretive papers include book reports, movie reviews and the other essays which suggest their own interpretations of drama performances, music shows, and other works of art.  In interpretative papers students are welcomed to express their own opinion on selected issues. It would be good to support the opinion with expert viewpoints as well. These essay types have to be very personal. It is not just “I like this book” essay type. You have to show how you understand a book, a poem or a drama performance.

Other kinds of research papers

There exist other kinds of research papers which are also written in high schools, colleges and universities. For example, these are informative or descriptive essays. In these essay types you have to give as much information about selected issues possible. There should be no analysis, no personal opinion there, but only facts. Informative and descriptive essays are written to evaluate students’ knowledge on certain topics, as well as their ability to look for and summarize information. These essay types are perhaps the easiest to write.

Research Paper Styles and Subject Areas

It is an established practice that different reference styles are commonly used in the different research areas. The list below, as compiled by ProfEssays.com, not only segregates your paper depending on your topic choice. It can also provide you information on how to cite a research paper and identify the basic formatting guidelines.

1. MLA or the Modern Language Association style research paper is usually used for the topics on humanities. The sub-topics are enlisted below:
* Philosophy
* Religion
* Theater, film and dance
* Art and architecture
* Literature
* World language and linguistics
* Music

2. APA or the American Psychological Association style research paper is about topics on social sciences. Topics under this type of research paper includes:
* Business and economics
* Anthropology
* Communication studies
* Education
* Geography
* Law
* Political science
* Psychology
* Sociology
* Women’s studies

3. CMS or the Chicago style research paper is about history. Below are the possible areas that you can consider in choosing a topic for a Chicago style paper:
* World history
* Asian history
* American history

4. CSE or the Council of Science Editors style research paper discusses topics on science. There are a number of possible sub-topics that you may use here. Some of which are enlisted below.
* Biology
* Chemistry
* Engineering
* Geology
* Mathematics
* Nursing and health science
* Physics
* Astronomy
* Computer science

5. Harvard reference style has no official manual of its own, the most widely-used guide on Harvard style is the Australian Style manual for authors, editors and printers, 6th edition. It may be used almost in any subject area where footnotes are not required.

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