What Are The Types Of Research Paper: A Brief Manual For College Students

College students may need to take note of the different types of research paper as this is one of the types of assignments that they will regularly encounter. Each has its own writing format. This will help them in identifying where their writing abilities lie among this range of papers. They also help them to express their thoughts based on the knowledge they've acquired. Below is a summary of the various types:


They are also known as persuasive papers. They involve presenting varying opinions expressed by two sides in relation to a certain topic. You should give views of both sides and each Information based on facts and citations. However, you are expected to strongly support one of the two sides. The whole idea is two capture your reader and draw them to having similar views as yours. You may also include pros and cons of each side or argument.


It is more of a factual writing than an opinion one. It requires you to gather as much data and statistics, evaluate them and come up with a conclusion from your findings. Each view from a subject should be presented equally followed by an evidence to back it up.

Compare and contrast

It entails making a comparison between two topics of interest. Their similarities and differences need to be taken into account. Though this type of work is often done in literary essays, other items outside it can also be compared and contrasted. Its aim is to give a distinction between two concepts of a related subject and not to persuade the reader(s). An example, writing on earthquakes and volcanoes or inner beauty vs physical beauty.


They come in different forms therefore, writing style and guidelines vary. Its main goal is to give details on a given subject. It contains graphs, Venn diagrams, experiments and interviews all in support of a topic.

Cause and effect

The concept entails looking into expected results arising from a certain action. They mostly answer the question 'why' and 'what next'. You may choose to carry out your findings based on causes, effects or both. This will wholly depend on your thesis. As a writer you are expected to highlight or predict possible outcomes of a given situation. They all require a thesis, background knowledge and skills in writing each and should be based on facts and findings. The method you choose to approach a topic depends on you, not unless its specified.

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