In your academic journey, you will discover that a research paper is a popular academic assignment that enables you to explore different issues in your area of study. In information technology-related courses, it is likely that you will encounter numerous assignments that require you to research and compile a research paper, whether from a theoretical perspective or a technical point of view. Your tutor may assign you a research paper for different purposes, i.e., to equip you with necessary academic writing skills, to gauge your understanding of the taught concepts, to test your ability to transfer knowledge, to assess your ability to apply class concepts in practice, and test how you synthesize information technology topics.
A research paper in IT may provide you with an opportunity to investigate research works of others. It may also be your opportunity to contribute your own research to a particular question of interest in the field. Writing your research paper will further help you practice important academic skills, such as formulating research questions, conducting research, managing time, organizing information into coherent ideas, and presenting insights about the research of the final copy. You need to ask yourself the following questions before you get your hands on the preparation phase of your writing process to understand the paper dynamics and aspects that it should cover.
- What topic have I chosen for my research and why?
- What do I know now about the topic? What do I want to find out?
- What are the controversies of the chosen topic?
- Did anything surprise me during my IT classes that I need to explore?
- What has been the most captivating aspect of the material I have encountered so far?
Follow the recommendations below to craft an A-grade research paper in information technology.
Pre-Writing Tips to Warm Up Before an Actual Writing
Prewriting in research is a general term denoting a range of activities that help you begin the writing process. The approach will help you develop ideas for your research, and guide you in exploring and organizing your thoughts before drafting the paper. By engaging in the process, you can also determine your audience and purpose. Below is a list of important prewriting strategies.
- Selecting a topic. Topic selection is the first and most important element of the research paper writing process. The selected topic should fall within the IT field of study and be manageable and interesting. Ensure that the selected research topic has the potential to add value to the existing IT literature and persuade different stakeholders to adopt certain practices relevant to the field issues.
- Freewriting. Free writing is freedom as it. The technique involves writing down anything and everything that comes to your mind. You do not need to pay attention to spelling or grammar conventions.
- Note taking. While conducting your research, take note of the important arguments, themes, theories, statistics, and facts documented in your sources. The process ensures you never miss any major theories and issues that influence the research topic.
- Clustering. To cluster your ideas into meaningful information, write down major points on a piece of paper. Subsequently, use links to put together matching or related ideas. Clustering helps you to develop themes that create more focus. Once you are done with clustering, outline why the topic and research are significant, the relevant background material, the thesis, and purpose statements, and the organizational plan for major and supporting ideas.
Selecting a Topic for Your Research Paper: A Few Ideas from Our Writers
The most challenging aspect of writing your IT research paper is selecting an appropriate topic. Here are some tips to help you in choosing one:
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- Select a topic you are interested in to ensure the research paper is informative and relevant;
- Narrow your ideas to generate a manageable topic. Manageability of a research topic is determined through the scope and information availability.
Examples of an appropriate topic for an information technology research paper include:
- An Integrative Model of IT Business Value: Information Technology & Organizational Performance;
- Management Strategies for Information Systems Management: A Case of Apple Inc.;
- IT & Workplace Organization & the Need for Skilled Employees at the Firm-Level;
- The Role of Technology Resources, Human Resources, and Business Resources in Creating a Competitive Advantage: IT Perspective;
- IT and Organizational Transformation as Promoters of Business Performance.
Creating a Research Paper Title for Your IT Assignment
Making up a title is a difficult task. Several ways can be used to develop a research paper title, and while some may appear better than the rest, it is impossible to point out only one as they are all useful in their capacity. Here are a few ideas that can help you develop a research paper title.
- Do not settle on one. Firstly, you need to do research and come up with probable issues you can explore and write about. You may craft a title once you have a vague idea of what you will discuss in the research paper. However, improve the title as you proceed with the writing and research process. In this case, you may go through several titles before you settle for one. Just do not be in a hurry.
- Establish the theme of your research paper. Think about the basic ideas you intend to convey in your research paper and avoid vague terms. If you have already come up with a thesis statement, you can use it to develop your title.
- Establish your research paper audience. If you’re writing an essay in information technology, you may try to hook the audience with something brief and catchy. However, you may want to provide broader ideas of issues and concepts in information technology. Thus, you should consider your audience and ensure you develop an appropriate title that will capture their interest.
The research paper aims to capture your reader’s’ attention and draw them to the research issue you are exploring. Follow the steps below to formulate a suitable topic for your research paper and identify:
- The purpose of the research;
- The narrative tone of the paper as defined by the type of research;
- The methods used in the research;
- An effective title for your academic research paper should have several characteristics.
The title should:
- Have no abbreviations;
- Accurately indicate the subject and scope of the study;
- Have words that create a positive impression and stimulate the reader’s interest;
- Use current nomenclature from the IT field of study;
- Identify key variables if the research paper is based on experimentation;
- Reveal what the paper will discuss and how it is organized;
- Be limited to 10-15 substantive words;
- Not have constructions such as “study of,” “analysis of” or anything similar;
- Be in the form of a phrase or question;
- Use correct grammar and capitalization with all first words and last words capitalized, including the first word of a subtitle. All nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs that appear between the first and last words of the title should be capitalized.
Formulating a Thesis Statement for Your Research Paper
The thesis statement is a sentence that summarizes your research paper content, provides your argument concerning the discussion topic and gives an idea of what to expect. In this case, you should formulate a thesis statement that informs your readers about the subject of your paper and the position you will take in the discussion. Remember that a strong thesis statement requires solid proof. Thus, it should not be merely a statement of fact. Ensure you back it up with detailed supporting evidence that will interest the readers. The following tips are effective for drafting your thesis statement.
- Know the topic. It is easier to write a thesis statement if you know the topic and are familiar with its content and concepts. Reflecting on the lecture notes and researching will help you know more about your topic.
- Limit your topic. Based on information gathered and the required length of your research paper, limit your topic to a specific area. A narrow scope of the topic will require a shorter paper while a broad scope will require a wordy and complex paper.
- Brainstorm. Try to discover new ideas and note them down. Try to come up with common themes based on the generated ideas. In addition to the themes, the chosen topic, and the researched information, you can come up with an appropriate thesis statement.
A good thesis statement must:
- Make a clear, limited, and definite assertion that can be explored and justified using scholarly evidence;
- Have specific arguments that provide the direction of your paper;
- Not be too broad for your paper. Otherwise, it would be impossible to explore every aspect of your claim. Ensure the scope projected in the thesis statement is manageable;
- Present an argument that can be proven or argued against;
- Show your position on the topic and direction of your argument.
Structure of Your IT Research Paper
The structure is one of the things you should pay attention to when writing your research. The structure of a research paper is basic, and you can use this layout for any type of it. All papers should have three parts, namely the introduction, the body, and the conclusion. Unlike an essay or a term paper, an IT research paper has almost six parts that form a formal structure of the paper. You should ensure your research paper has the title page, the abstract, the introduction, the body, the conclusion, and the reference section. Each of the sections contains different information and is equally significant. Check the most common way that students can structure their research papers:
- Title page. The title page contains the title of the paper and is the first element the reader encounters in your paper. Often, it is written on a separate page but can be presented as a stand-alone text as well. However, the title can appear just above the paper’s abstract.
- Abstract. The abstract summarizes the paper content and includes the research issue and significance of the study, the methods used to conduct research, findings, and their implications.
- Introduction. This offers a general statement about the research topic and is used to draw people into your writing. It presents the main arguments that the research paper is exploring, namely the thesis statement. The thesis statement, which indicates the information that you’re trying to prove through your paper, should be the idea that controls the entire project.
- Body. Notably, the body of a research paper presents a literature review. Here, you explore the research that has already been done on the chosen IT concept. The second important element of the body is the methodology section that allows to input information concerning how the research was conducted and what instruments were used in the process. In this case, it shows the way you are going to explore the thesis statement highlighted in the introduction. Thirdly, your research paper must have the results segment, which highlights findings from the conducted study. The last paragraphs should highlight a discussion of the study results, their implications, and relevance to the IT field of study.
- Conclusion. In this section, provide the general statement about the topic and some final thoughts about the issue at hand. Restate the thesis statement and sum up the major points that were used in the paper to prove the thesis statement.
Post Writing Tips: The End Is Near!
During the IT research paper writing process, you may err at any point in any of the grammar, sentences, tense, or paragraph mechanics aspects. These errors affect your overall grade. Engage in a review of your research paper to ensure it is free from paragraph, sentence, and word errors. Ensure to reference all the cited sources using appropriate referencing styles.