General tips on how to write a psychology research paper

Writing a research paper, regardless of the subject it is based around, is complex and time-consuming. Depending on which direction your research is leaning towards, you need to elaborate your strategy and make sure you do not slip off while conducting your study. Throughout your research, you will most likely need to switch from broad to narrow psychological concepts, and then go back to a broad one again at the end. This is why outlining your writing strategy and preparing all the literature and empirical research you might need is the foremost thing to do.

As mentioned above, you should start out by deciding on the following things:

  • What is your broad research topic and what are some narrow case studies you want to analyze in your research paper?
  • Are there additional literature sources that you want to use for your paper aside from the mandatory bibliography?
  • Are you going to include any value-added information (e.g. your own research, empirical analysis, first-hand observations, etc.)?

Once you have selected a topic and answered the questions above, you may start conducting your research.

Empirical research

Learning how to write a psychology paper, you are to acquire research skills. At this point, you are to decide whether you want to focus on processing secondary information or carry out your own research to obtain primary data. The latest path requires more effort and is more consuming, yet it is to pay off later in your academic and professional career. There are various means for collecting empirical information in regards to psychology. You can go with either qualitative or quantitative data collection approach. The techniques may include, but are not limited to the ones below:

  • Surveys
  • Opinion polls
  • Interviews
  • Observations and field notes taking
  • Experimental studies

The information obtained through your research may help you to generate or test a hypothesis stated in your research thesis - the key objective of your paper.

If your research paper is literature-based, make sure you diversify your sources and present the whole picture. As psychology is ever-changing and dependent on a number of social, political and economic aspects, you also need to align every piece of information you decide to include in your paper with the relevant reality of today, or the time setting that your research paper is focused on. While credential literature editions are a good choice for deriving information, consider gaining perspectives from other sources, for example:

  • Online psychology-focused newspapers, along with the published ones
  • Other people's research papers
  • Video and audio materials

Keep in mind that every piece of information you obtain needs to be referenced. You might want to take notes for further citation during your research so that later you do not need to wonder where that fact you based your whole paper on came from.

Once you have all the data gathered, it is time to eloquently write it all down. Start with a rough draft, and then edit your writing bit by bit. Make sure you are consistent with the style and formatting throughout your psychology research paper.

Challenges

Yet, even if you know exactly how to write a psychology paper, you might still need some assistance. When it comes to psychology research works, there are many things to take into consideration. Unlike solid natural and STEM studies, psychology is extremely multidimensional, and this quality majorly reflects on any psychology-related research. Not only you need to have accurate and relevant data, but also you have to present it from all the sides. This often leads to students mistaking psychology research papers for essays for a psychology class and turning their researches into personal rants.

To ensure that your paper aligns with all the requirements, we offer our services to assist you at any stage of your research.