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If you’re wondering how to prepare a qualitative research paper, you should take into account that writing a scientific article provides taking into account specific requirements. This form of writing is often very strict and which does not suit many authors. But since the form of a classical research paper is rigid and codified, it means you can learn it. Even if you want to send articles to professional magazines, you can prepare a good qualitative work.
The first thing you need to do is to read lots of various scientific articles about scientific writing. It may sound terrible, even for a philosopher who loves the meta level. But without the help of experienced colleagues and scientists, you will not know how to present your thoughts and results in a more clear and transparent way.
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Of course, writing scientific articles is a craft, that’s why it requires practice and learning. Good editorial offices (and not those from the blacklist of bullets journals) consider articles that are not only meritorious but also meet the formal requirements (and these are not always standard for each magazine, sometimes they are customary).
There are generally three broad categories of journal submissions: very good articles, good articles, and others. Very good articles are routinely subjected to a peer review, and they are being recommended for revision. Other submissions are of less exceptional quality, and they can be sorted out in the process of editorial screening. Some authors do not make a substantive contribution to the theory or are not sufficiently developed.
Here is a universal checklist, which is worth reviewing: both before writing the article and before sending the text to the editorial board:
And what about reading? What should you read to write better?
There are many review articles on the publishing market that are interesting and where you can find an explanation of what the first mail should look like, is there a cover letter, how to do a revision, etc. Of course, it is best to train under the guidance of experienced colleagues. And if you do not have such a possibility, it is always worth reading something.
When writing a scientific paper, you can wonder can a research paper have bullet points. Yes, there’s nothing wrong with it. It should be noted here that you should stick to one type of bullets in a research paper throughout the work, thus avoiding unnecessary variety. Also, you should take into account that among the characters serving the punctuation there is a certain hierarchy in which the square or dot stands higher than the dash (pause), above which figures are the letter and the number above the letter.
Sure! Using numbers in a research paper is another means of structuring the work. One more common question about preparing the research paper is can I write numbers in a research paper. Yes, you can use numbers as your bullet points. If the paper is relatively long, you can assign a number to each part of the paper and a sub-number for smaller parts. You can also use numbers as the bullet points for your listings.
One of the most common reasons for not accepting a scientific article for publication is an incorrect text structure. Of course, a good structure does not guarantee anything: not only good research is needed, but also a clear text is written in the correct language, as well as many other issues. But just the lack of a proper structure shows that you do not know what the research paper is all about.
Many magazines in their guidelines for authors give information on the maximum volume of the text, guidelines for the preparation of charts, attachments, bullets, numbers, etc. However, as many magazines do not indicate what structure of the text the authors have to use. It is assumed that this is obvious and understandable by itself. And such approach often causes problems, especially among young scientists from countries where practically no time is spent on (doctoral) studies for the development of academic papers and workshop competences, enabling them to achieve their scientific goals.
The structure is just a common standard, but the editorial staff often assume implicitly that it is known by everybody. The most classic structure of the scientific text is the structure called IMRAD: Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion.
However, Literature review and Conclusion do not have to appear in every text. Literature review often appears in the introduction and takes 1-2 paragraphs of a detailed description of the state of research. As well as a Conclusion section – it is often not a mandatory part of the scientific paper.
In addition to the sections related to the “content” of the text, there are also parts of the text which are essential for the visibility, recognisability, and searchability of our text. They are such “typical” parts as title, abstract, bullet points, numbers, keywords or acknowledgments.
The main purpose of the section is a presentation of the objectives of the work. In this part, a research hypothesis and the research subject must be highlighted (apart from the objectives).
One must describe the approach of research, research perspective and what the results bring to science.
In this part, the following questions should be answered:
The aim of this section is sketching the theoretical background and recalling the most important similar works on a given topic. In this part, one should focus on texts published in the best magazines, scientific issues and other literature.
You should refer to “primary literature” (original research work + review articles), not textbooks. This information you can also structure in numbers.
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The main goal of this section is to show how the “empirical base” was acquired, what is it at all and how it will be analyzed. Objectives of the section: objective presentation – as far as it is possible – of key results, but without their interpretation. It only shows what results you have achieved.
You should also highlight the next points in this chapter:
The goal of this section is to show what do the results of the research mean and why the analysis is important. In this section, you should answer such questions:
Now let us take a look at how to prepare other additional parts of your paper where you can also use bullet points and numbers
The title is a summary of the main ideas of our research. Therefore, it should contain exact words to describe the content and purpose of the article adequately.
It is important that the title of the article highlights the content of the article, encourages others to read the article, encourages scientists representing various fields to study the article.
Here are basic tips for good title development:
The abstract is probably the most important part of the paper. Here are the reasons for it:
You are probably wondering how many keywords you can use in your research paper. Most magazines require from 5 to 12 keywords. Sometimes you have to choose keywords from the special magazine’s list of keywords but don’t forget to use bullets or numbers when enumerating the used keywords.
Keywords may consist of many elements, e.g. “civil society,” they must contain all relevant terms from the title and the abstract. The best keywords consist of 1 to 3 words.
The style of the references list depends on the guidelines of the journal and the indicated bibliographic style.
“Acknowledgments” are a formal statement in which we thank others for the participation in the project, but above all, we recognize someone’s “contribution” to the research process.
In this section, you should never thank for things that are not directly related to the research.
References part (or “Acknowledgments”) contains simple thanks, without dedicating the work to “mom, father, wife, and brother.”
Whom can we thank:
What is the best way to thank people in your research paper?
You should indicate only the first and last name of the person and do not use titles, positions or prizes.
So, now you know how to create a nice structured scientific article, what chapters should it include. You have also found the answer to the question “can you use bullets in a research.
Yes – it is the simplest answer we could ever give. Moreover, it is advisable to use bullet points for a number of reasons.
oth bullets and numbers are indispensable parts of any research paper because it makes the work more structured.
These basic principles are universal for all disciplines. Naturally, each journal may require some additional sections (e.g., separate information about financing or a conflict of interest). However, the basic requirements for the structure of the research paper analyzed in this article do not change.
Now you are ready to prepare a qualitative paper for the publication. Good luck!