How To Write A Conclusion For A Research Paper
Picture this. You’re reading a book in which the story has reached the climax. But when you get to the ending bit, you find it to be utterly underwhelming and dissatisfying. Ask any reader, and they’ll tell you, there can be nothing worse than a sloppy ending to a book. The same logic applies to the research papers as well.
Often students are so busy writing the introduction and main chapters of the paper that by the time they get to the conclusion, they run out of time to submit the task. This ultimately results in a haphazardly written conclusion, and students end up losing a few precious marks.
Now, the reason behind these haphazard attempts could be because they don’t have clarity on preparing research paper conclusion appropriately. So, if you want more clarity on how to conclude a research paper, then read through the steps mentioned below.
Steps on How to Write a Fitting Conclusion For Research Papers
If you’re in need of a little guidance on how to write a good conclusion for a research paper, then read on.
Steps #1: Rephrase the topic of your research paper at the beginning
You should reiterate the topic concisely as well as explain why it’s crucial. Don’t invest a substantial amount of time or space into emphasising on your research paper topic.
A well-crafted research paper will make the significance of your topic apparent, so you that don’t need to write an elaborate defence of your topic in conclusion. Ideally, a single sentence is all you required to rephrase the topic.
For example, if you’re writing about the most powerful women characters in Shakespearean literature, then you can state: “The women characters from Shakespearean plays were way ahead of their times.”
Step #2: Rephrase your thesis statement within the conclusion
Apart from the topic, you should make sure to rephrase the thesis statement. The thesis statement is a narrowed, focused idea on the topic that you’re working with. This statement should be the rephrased version that you have actually included in your introduction. It should not appear identical or too similar to the sentence you originally used in the introduction.
Try altering your thesis statement in the first sentence of your conclusion. It should complement the summary of your research paper topic.
Step #3: Sum up the pivotal ideas
You need to remind the readers about the discussions and explanations in the body of the research paper. A brilliant way to make it happen is by browsing through the major sections in the body of your academic document.
Look for ways to concisely restate each point or ideas elaborated in the main body while writing the conclusion. In this case, you don’t need to repeat any of the supporting details used within the main body of your task.
Also, refrain from incorporating any new information in your research paper conclusion. This is particularly true that if the information is vital to the argument or research presented in your paper.
Step #4: Call the readers to action if and when appropriate
If it’s required, you can tell your readers that there is scope for further research on your paper's topic. In this case, a call for action may not be essential for every research paper conclusion. A research paper on literature, for example, won’t usually need a call for action than a paper on any specific social issue.
A research paper that’s more likely to call readers to action is one that addresses a public or scientific need.
Step #5: Answer the “so what” question
The concluding section of your research paper is your opportunity to highlight the broader context of the issue you’ve been elaborating. It’s also a place to help readers decipher why the topic of your paper really matters. The conclusion of your paper is for answering the “so what” question because the significance of your topic may not be too apparent to the readers.
For instance, if you are writing a history research paper, then you might explain how the historical topic you discussed matters today.
Step #6: Don’t meddle with the tone of the research paper
The tone of your research paper should be consistent throughout every section. Generally, a shift in tone happens when a research paper with an academic tone concludes on an emotional or sentimental note.
Even if the topic of the academic task holds a personal significance for you, you shouldn’t show that in the document.
If you want to introduce a more humanistic angle in your paper, you could begin and conclude your paper with an anecdote or story that would provide your topic more personal meaning to the reader. But make sure you’re consistent with the tone throughout the paper.
Step #7: Bring everything to a full circle
Tie your research paper together by directly connecting your introduction with your conclusion. There are several ways to do this. Pose a question in your introduction. In your conclusion, restate the question and offer a direct answer.
Write an anecdote or story in your introduction but do not share the ending. Instead, present the ending of the anecdote in the conclusion of your paper.
Step #8: Close with logic
If your research paper is presenting multiple sides of a specific issue, use your conclusion to come up with a logical opinion based on your evidence. Include sufficient details about your topic to back the thesis statement up.
However, don’t get too carried away with unnecessary details. If your research didn’t yield a clear answer to a question posed in your thesis, don’t hesitate to mention that. Rephrase your initial hypothesis and explain whether you still believe it or if the research you performed has changed your opinion.
Step #9: Provide a suggestion
If you're incorporating a call to action in your conclusion, you could present your reader with a recommendation on how to proceed with further research.
In fact, you can also make recommendations even without a call to action. For instance, if you are writing a conclusion for a research paper on a topic like third-world poverty, you can suggest various ways for the readers to research the issue without necessarily calling for more research.
A Pertinent Research Paper Conclusion Example
To provide some clarity on how to write a research paper conclusion or how long should a research conclusion be, here’s an example from the University of Ottawa.
Summary: Human encroachment, ecosystem sun.'ival, and possible solutions
In the end, there is no way to deny the seriousness of this environmental threat. If the current clear-cutting practices continue, the Ungolu rainforest will be unable to support the red-tailed swallow, and it will become extinct within a year. Without this bird, the tree-eating corkscrew beetle will have nothing to stop its spread, and it will disrupt the rainforest's ecosystem even further. Although the inhabitants of the area request the commercialization of land and wood to ensure the
economic development of ungolu, initiatives with regards to ecotourism and biological agriculture can be pursued to ensure both the growth of the economy and the survival of the red-tailed swallow. Because of the dire environmental consequences of its extinction, it is Vital that this species be preserved—and it is possible to do so with a reasonable amount of effort and resources...
Final thought: Influence Of northem countries..
Indeed, the best way to encourage the inhabitants of the area to let the ungolu rainforest recover is for northern countries to stop purchasing the products obtained from logging practices and to subsidize the local initiatives discussed in this paper. Otherwise, there is no motivation for the local population to make a significant change. If we do not act quickly and decisively, there will soon be no rainforest left to speak of, and the inhabitants of the area will be even worse off than before the introduction of logging practices.
Source: University of Ottawa
Just like a story, your research paper is also incomplete without a fitting conclusion. If you need support with this process, then following these steps will come handy.
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