Writing an Effective Research Paper Conclusion

Friday, December 25, 2009

The conclusion of a research paper, even though it is the last paragraph, is as important as the rest of the paper. It is one of the inevitable parts of the research paper structure. An effective research paper conclusion will not only enhance the theory you are projecting but it will also leave a lasting impression in the audience.

Conclusion is one part that mostly gets ignored only because of the fact that it comes towards the end of the research paper. Students mistake that it is just ‘the last paragraph’. But it is not. Any last paragraph can’t be a conclusion. A conclusion skillfully ends a discussion without leaving it abrupt or incomplete. Hence it is not to be ignored or taken lightly. Each part of the structure of a research paper is equally important. The conclusion is as important as the introduction; if the introduction is your first chance to talk about your work, the conclusion is the final chance you have, to prove your point.

The research paper conclusion is supposed to be as brief a paragraph as the introduction. It will make the entire paper look unfocused if the conclusion is not a precise one. It should not only be precise but it should also contain the main points in the research paper, all put together to establish the research conclusion.

The matter in your thesis statement should be mentioned again in the conclusion but in a format different from that in the introductory paragraph. In the introduction you just state your theory. But in the conclusion, you should repeat your thesis statement, with the support of the main points. First you should understand that the purpose of a conclusion is to declare the successful outcome of your research. Your body paragraphs are all aimed at a successful and strong conclusion. Hence, the tone used in the concluding paragraph should be bold and confident. The best and strongest points should be picked from all the body paragraphs and put together in one sentence which unquestionably points to the conclusion.

You should not include any new points in the concluding paragraph. Bringing up a new point will again require the necessary explanation which will, in turn, make the paragraph too long to be a concluding paragraph. Even the research method need not be repeated unless it is necessary to prove the point. A good conclusion should only have the facts that have already been discussed elaborately and the theory which was presented in the beginning of the research paper.

An effective research paper conclusion will not leave any questions unanswered. Here you will boldly announce the outcome of your research. There should not be any suggestion of a doubt or uncertainty about the stated facts.

Writing an effective research paper conclusion involves as much effort and focus on your part as the rest of the assignment. If you are not sure of how to frame a strong conclusion to wind up your research paper, consult your advisor or someone knowledgeable, instead of risking your entire research paper.

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