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What Are the Most Popular Types of Research Papers

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A well-written research paper is your thoughts which are based on a thorough analysis of what you managed to research your assigned topic. When it comes to students, a research paper is one of the most important things they should know about academic writing. Let’s admit that such writing assignments do not make students’ lives easier. But there is one thing that can facilitate your writing – you must know what you write about. 

Know what you write about

One of the most essential elements of an A+ Grade research paper is the clear and deep understanding of the subject. There are many different types of research papers and you should always ask your teacher which one you should use. As a rule, the needed type of research paper is mentioned in the paper requirement information which has to be provided by your tutor. In the paragraphs below, you will find information about different research paper types, which are the following:

Argumentative papers

This type presents two sides of a controversial issue in the one paper. A professionally-written argumentative paper includes in-text citations from reliable researchers. Students have to provide logical facts from both sides of the topic. You should analyse the pros and cons of every argument. When you write an argumentative paper you are expected to favour one side more than the others. However, do not do it too emotional and include both sides of the argument. 

Analytical papers

You have to include information from various sources. Students have to focus on analysing several different viewpoints, which are represented from a factual and not an opinionated standpoint. We recommend you to focus on the findings, methodology, or conclusions of your research. Make sure to include the summation of all your findings for future studies on this certain issue.

Definition papers

This type of research papers is relatively self-explanatory. Students have to describe a certain topic from a factual standpoint. It has to be devoid of the opinion or emotions of the author. The definition research paper is supposed to include various facts from several reliable sources. Many students find this type of writing difficult to write because we all like to discuss issues from own perspective. Make sure that your definition paper provides a valuable information framework for other reports on the same topic.

Compare and contrast papers

This type is widely used in literature courses when students have to compare two different authors, stories from a certain genre. You can see such papers in social sciences as well when you have to compare two different theoretical viewpoints. It is a good type to compare thoughts and ideas. The essential part of a compare and contrast research paper is that both elements have to be described properly. In the main part, you will write the comparison, and the rest will be devoted to contrasting examples to support the thesis statement.

Cause and effect papers

Use this type if you want to trace the expected results from a certain action in a logical progression. This type of research paper is widely used in education and business fields because it helps outline the main predicted results from the situation and demonstrates the range of results that may arise from this situation to its logical conclusion.


In this type, you have to follow a memorandum. Such research papers aim to outline a certain case study situation. You have to include a summary of the situation, an identification of the main concern; a breakdown of the elements, and the core recommendations on how to address the problem which is based on research on your topic. Your report has to include short factual sentences, which are devoid of emotion. Reports may include such supporting evidence as an appendix, graphs, or tables.

Interpretive papers

It is one of the most required types by professors in literature, humanities, and social sciences. Students have to use theoretical knowledge which was gained in a course of study. It can be a piece of art, a poem, a business situation, a psychological case profile, etc. Remember that the key element is the evidence that you have written the research paper based on an established theoretical framework.

As you can see, there are many types and many ways to write your research paper. If you have a deadline and absolutely no time, you can always pay someone to write my paper. Nowadays, it is easy to hire an experienced who will do the job for you. 


Such a big variety of research paper formats may seem a little bit daunting at first glance. However, you must continue your work through this course. Very soon you will understand the principal differences in these research paper types. Once you have a clear understanding, it is not difficult to structure your research papers to the best showcase. 

Helen Bradfield did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. She has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being.

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