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Seven Papers That a Student Should Know How to Write Seven Papers That a Student Should Know How to Write

Higher education involves lots of writing of different research papers. When you progress from high school, you should learn how to write research papers under these categories as they will be part of your assignments:

Analytical Paper

This assignment includes information from various sources focusing on analyzing different points of view from a factual but not opinionated standpoint. When authoring an analytical paper, your focus may mostly have to be on methodology, findings or conclusions by other researchers and conclude by summing up the results and a suggested framework for more study on the issue.

Argumentative Paper

An argumentative paper presents both sides of a controversial issue. For your work to be good enough, it should include in-text citations from the researchers presenting logical facts on both sides about an issue. The paper's conclusion requires the author to analyze pros and cons of every argument. The confusing element about writing argumentative is the expectation on the writer to support one side of an issue more than the other but keep the research and analysis factual while including both sides of the arguments.

Definition Paper

It is a paper describing a topic from factual standpoint without the author’s emotion or opinion. The writer leaves the information unanalyzed containing only the facts present in research paper findings by another person. The definition paper might be difficult to write if you a student who enjoys discussing issues from your perspective but a good description paper provides a valuable information framework for other analytical or argumentative reports on the topic.

Interpretive Paper

Often, it is students studying literature, social sciences, and humanities who write interpretive papers. Their tutors require them to use their theoretical knowledge they gain during their study of particular case studies such as

  • A poem or piece of art in literary field
  • A psychological case profile in psychological or sociology fields
  • Business situation in management course

The key element is sustaining an interpretive paper the evidence on which you base your paper. It should have an established theoretical framework with supporting data from backing up thesis statement and the findings of the paper.

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Cause and Effect Paper

The purpose of cause and effect paper is to trace the expected or probable results from particular policy or action in a logical progression that a reader will quickly follow. For education and business fields, cause and effect papers help in outlining predicted results from specified action/situation. They are also essential where a range of effects may arise from a single situation after following it up to its logical conclusion.

Compare and Contrast Paper

Writing of compare and contrast papers is mostly for literature courses for comparison of two different stories or authors from a particular genre. Tutors in other fields may as well require students to write these types of papers. For instance, in social sciences, it helps to compare two theoretical viewpoints. In philosophy; it examines the thoughts of two different philosophical frameworks. In business studies, a compare and contrast paper helps in comparison of issues such as diverse leadership styles.

The important part of the paper is that the main section compares and contrasts examples that you write to support your thesis even while describing both elements concisely.


Students write reports to present a case study situation and usually follow a memorandum or a comparable business format. For instance, your tutor requires you to write a report describing key issues in a scenario akin to that of a workplace may be from HR standpoint. The report has a summary of the following:

  • Situation to date
  • Identification of main concern or issue
  • Breakdown of elements for the main issue
  • Recommendations for addressing the issue base on topic research

A report contains short factual sentences without emotion, unlike a comparison paper that uses "if…by" statements or those taking a similar approach. Usually, a report includes an executive summary taking the place of abstract and supporting evidence which can be in the form of graphs, appendix, and graphs.

All the above research papers may seem daunting, but you will learn about their fundamental differences and proper structures as you work through your course.

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