A healthcare research paper is academic writing based on an original scientific investigation of a particular physical and mental topic, analysis of gathered information, and interpretation of the research findings. Healthcare research papers may focus on different aspects, such as public and community health, diet and nutrition, mental disorders, and ethical issues, among others. Questions students need to ask themselves before beginning the research paper investigation and writing process include:
The healthcare field is dynamic and complex since the continuously changing issues in the field of healthcare make it difficult to write an up-to-date research paper. However, there is hope once you follow the given step-by-step analysis guidelines that help you respond to the questions outlined above. Regardless of the healthcare research paper writing requirements, the first important element entails deciding what to research and write about. Therefore, coming up with a healthcare research topic is an important first step to take.
Challenging topics or those that disinterest you may contribute to the loss of enthusiasm and diminish the efforts you may put to research and put the research paper together. Therefore, select topics that interest and challenge you to improve your attitude towards the topic and the research process. The following steps are essential when selecting research topics in healthcare studies.
Familiarize yourself with the healthcare literature related to your intended topic. Although this appears to be an obvious first step in the writing process, you need to be sure you have read the latest information about a possible topic. Healthcare literature changes rapidly. Thus, you need to review the most recent publications in your healthcare field and try to dig the latest information.
Be critical when it comes to the newest information. The very latest studies are least likely to have been critically analyzed, replicated, and integrated into the existing theories. Thus, you need to remain skeptical of the newest research unless there is a solid proof that confirms the findings.
Review the research assignment carefully. Missing out some important requirements is possible. Therefore, you should read the research paper assignment to ensure you understand all the requirements. Careful review reduces the risk of missing out the key instructions.
Brainstorm for ideas. Generate topic ideas by exploring the strong opinions you have on current healthcare issues, such as unavoidable harm to patients, pressure sores and prevention, and the lack of transparency in health promotion programs. Try to remember recent topics or information acquired lately that piqued your interest in topics, such as community health, behavioral health care, physical activity, and nutrition, etc. Other ways of brainstorming for ideas entail exploring issues that you are interested to know more about, gaps in the literature that you can fill, and class aspects that need in-depth research and analysis.
Possible topics for your healthcare research paper are the following:
Writing a research paper is not confined to formulating a research topic and title. In this case, topic development is just one aspect of the research and writing process. The following tips will be essential in assembling elements of your research paper.
Compile your key facts and list the sources early on. Before you start writing, assemble the final list of sources and document the quotes you would like to use to support your arguments. Compiling key facts and ideas before you begin saves you time. Thus, you do not have to keep going back to your sources to look up quotes. Moreover, the process ensures you are equipped with evidence and in-text citations before you even start writing the research paper.
Develop a strong thesis statement. A thesis statement is a single sentence that summarizes the research topic and the conclusions the reader expects to draw from research. Since the thesis statement serves as a guide for the rest of the paper, it is the most important sentence in the project.
Make an outline. Outline components of your research paper before you write. Outlining helps you to stay on track and ensures you capture all the essential ideas. The more effort that you put into your outline, the faster the actual writing process will proceed.
A thesis statement summarizes the claim or main point of the research paper. It should inform your intended audience on the importance of your healthcare subject matter and provide a roadmap for the entire paper. An effective thesis statement cannot be answered with a simple “yes” or “no” since it is not a topic or an opinion. An effective thesis statement for your research paper should have two parts. The first part articulates your paper argument while the second part supports the claim made.
Analyze available primary sources. Among your primary sources, explore interests, tension, controversy, complications, and ambiguity. When doing the analysis, ensure to ask yourself the following questions:
Responding to the noted questions will place you in a better position to develop a working thesis. Without exploring issues exhibited in primary sources, you will probably be making an observation and nothing more.
Once you have a working thesis, note it down. There is nothing as annoying as hitting on a great idea for your thesis and then forgetting it. Writing down your working thesis helps you to not only remember it but also facilitates logical, concise, and clear analysis of the thesis. Since it is not possible to come up with a good thesis at first try, you can put yourself on the right track by writing down the ideas that you have.
Ensure the thesis is a prominent part of the introduction. The standard place for your thesis statement is at the end of an introductory paragraph, particularly in shorter research papers of between five to fifteen pages. Since it is the standard location of a thesis statement, readers often pay more attention to the last sentence of the introduction.
Anticipate the counterarguments. Refine your thesis statement by considering counterarguments to your thesis. Anticipating counterarguments will help you think and analyze arguments you might need to refute in your research paper. If your thesis statement lacks a possible counterargument, then it is not an argument. Rather, it is a fact or an opinion.
Once you are done crafting your thesis statement, you should consider various aspects like the ones offered below:
A typical structure of a research paper contains the introduction, the methods, the results, and the discussion. The majority of topics in healthcare require scientific inquiry. Each of them should be written taking into account the introduction, methods, and discussion structure. The methods, the results, and the discussion structure constitute the body part of the paper just like in case with the essays and term papers. Each section of the structural components addresses a different objective. For instance, the introduction presents the healthcare problem you intend to address. You present your healthcare research problem as the research question if the number of required pages is limited. In the methodology section, you need to state what you did to respond to the research question while the results segment should document your study observations. The discussion part of the research paper should indicate what you think the results mean and compare the findings with the existing literature on the discussed healthcare issue.
Introduction. The introduction should explain the rationale and background for the research. It should highlight the research question and explain why it is important to the area of study. At this point, you also need to provide a prelude to the research to situate it within some larger field of inquiry in healthcare issues. When articulating the research problem, ensure the research question is spelled out so that the readers won’t have to guess one. The introduction must:
Methods. The methodology section provides the readers with sufficient details about the study methods to enable them to reproduce the research if desired. The articulated methods of research and inquiry should be specific, technical, concrete, and detailed. The research setting, the sampling strategy used, the instruments, the data collection methods, and the analysis strategies should be described. The methodology section should:
Results. The findings section is straightforward and factual. You should provide details of all the results that are related to the research question, including simple counts and percentages. Resist the temptation to demonstrate analytical ability and the richness of the dataset by providing numerous tables with non-essential results. The result section of your research paper should:
Discussion. The discussion section is as important as every other part of your research paper. Moreover, it is the most difficult segment to write because it entails explaining your research findings and linking the results to hypothesized arguments and existing literature. The discussion should:
Conclusion. The conclusion of your research paper should summarize its major points and restate the thesis statement in unique words. Where possible, provide the research limitations and present recommendations regarding the issues raised in the research paper. Do not include new content at this point.
Important post writing tips are related to the proofreading of your research paper and ensuring it is adequately and appropriately referenced. It is impossible to write a research paper that does not require outside sources unless it is purely based on reflection. Under normal circumstances, you should reference your assertions, the methods and the instruments used in the research process. There is no need to be exhaustive unless the research paper is a comprehensive review of a healthcare topic. Proofread your work to ensure you have not used unpublished work or technical reports as it may be difficult to find reference elements. Ensure you use appropriate reference styles as required by your professor. In this case, the in-text citations should be accurate and well-referenced. Proofread your work once more to ensure your research paper is free from grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and spelling mistakes.