Choosing A Proper Research Paper Format: Things To Remember


The research paper is a unique and very scientifically-based paper which you will come across multiple times throughout the course of your academic career. When you have to create a research paper more often than not you will be given the exact format required. But in cases where this was not given, you have the opportunity to select a research paper format that you feel best represents the work you have done.

In this regard there are two types of formats you may be asked or prevailed upon to select from. The first is the citation format. The second is the organizational format. Both are important to the structure of your finished paper, and without both you will have a difficult time completing the perfect final product and meeting all of the needs laid out by your assignment details and by the professor who tasked you with the assignment in the first place.

Citation format

The citation format refers to the literal structure and format of the final product. In most cases this includes either MLA, APA, Chicago, or Harvard style. These formats are very similar but they differ in small yet important factors. If you have the opportunity to select from all of these and pick any of them, you are best off selecting one with which you are already familiar. If you have previously written an assignment using MLA format this is more than likely going to be the best citation format for this purpose because you have already been exposed to it and its requirements. If, instead, you prefer a challenge then by all means select one with which you are unfamiliar and use this as a wonderful learning opportunity.

Organizational format

The organizational format refers to the manner in which your key paragraphs and subjects are organized. In most cases students choose to organize their content from the strongest argument down to the weakest argument, from the weakest argument down to the strongest argument, or chronologically. The choice is truly contingent upon your personal taste and your subject matter. In some instances one is more appropriate than the other but in most cases it is up to the discretion of the student. If you craft an outline you can use the outline to determine which organizational format you prefer by moving around the different paragraphs until you find the best presentation method.