Seven Quick and Easy Steps to Plan a Research Paper

It is that time of the academic year again when “research paper” becomes the dreaded phrase. With almost all subjects requiring the same lengthy writing task, you as a student will feel exhausted just thinking about how you can beat the deadline.

Although having an eager friend or using a professional’s help can help you solve the problem, it is still wiser to know the in and outs of writing a research paper. To help you get started, below is a checklist of the things you must consider in your academic writing task.

1. Check when the paper is due. Make a list of all your researching and writing concerns before approaching your professor for a consultation. Having prepared a set of questions saves both you and your professor’s time.

2. Upon consultation, ask whether the professor needs a preliminary draft such as an outline. Again, ask for the deadline of the draft so you can manage your schedule.

3. Next, ask if there is a required length. Most research papers have an average of 10 to 15 pages including the bibliography, but that still depends on the professor’s own requirements.

4. Ask which research materials and resources you can use. While it is advantageous to use the internet, there are some professors who suggest avoiding unscreened materials for your research paper. Electronic journals can be valuable sources of information if you have the means to pay monthly membership fees to gain unlimited access.

5. In most cases, professors assign a uniform topic for a research paper. If you are given the freewill to choose, make sure you are interested in the topic and that you already have a concrete idea of it before consulting your professor.

6. If you still have problems with your topic, try to browse newspapers, magazines, or encyclopedias. This way, you may be inspired to research and write about something that catches your attention or that is timely and touches human interest. If you put yourself in your readers’ shoes, consider whether you will be interested to read your work or not.

7. Finally, create a regular writing schedule for your research paper. Professors give the task weeks ahead of the deadline so make it a point that you devote a couple of hours each day instead of procrastinating until the wee hours of the submission date.

With these guidelines, you can be confident that your research papers are done effortlessly and excellently in no time. Remember, there is absolutely no reason to stammer when you have a trusty checklist and the eagerness to finish your research paper.


Cassandra Bailey is the only daughter of a real estate business tycoon in Florida. While taking up Business Administration at the University of Miami, Cassandra has been working as an apprentice at his father’s company, working on a research paper on the current real estate situation in the United States. Definitely beauty and brains, Cassandra has won three beauty pageants in Miami.