July 21, 2022

Types and forms of students’ research work

A scientific research paper is a learning experience in which students research and try to solve problems in their professional field. Students have been involved in research since their freshman year. Even the existence of so many worthy “write my paper for me” services can tell us a lot about the popularity of research work assignments in colleges.

It seems that only gifted students are better off doing research work. However, for students, the novelty of the solution proposed in the research paper takes second place. In the first place are the personal and professional skills that eventually form. For example, the ability to understand the volume of information, be creative in problem-solving, think critically, be curious, and be capable of self-learning. These come in handy in both work and life.

However, for some students, the path to big science begins with research work. They write and prepare their research papers according to the logic and rules of real scientific work – with theory analysis, construction of hypotheses, and experiments.

Another result of students’ independent research is the formation of public trust and respect for scientific knowledge. The university will graduate educated citizens who know what scientists do and why their work is important.

Purpose and objectives of the student’s research work

The research work is created in stages. The student together with the supervisor:

  • chooses a relevant topic;
  • formulates the problem;
  • defines the object and subject of the research;
  • makes a hypothesis;
  • sets the goal and objectives;
  • determines the method of work;
  • collects and analyzes the literature on the topic;
  • checks in practice, if such a task is set;
  • decides whether the hypothesis is confirmed or vice versa;
  • draws conclusions and proposals;
  • publishes the work, if the practical value is revealed.

We will talk about the principles of writing the research paper in more detail below, but for now, let’s dwell on the difference between the purpose and the objective of the research. The purpose is related to the problem. Proper goal setting should help to find a solution. Ideally, its achievement is the result of the work.

Objectives are the steps that bring us closer to the purpose, the author’s strategy. The order and logic of the tasks determine the sequence of the researcher’s actions and the structure of the scientific research work.

Types of research work

Students have been involved in research work since the beginning of their studies. The level of sophistication of scientific research increases with the students. Let’s name the types of research papers.


A written report or analytical review, for the preparation of which the author studies the literature on a given topic. The student reflects on the information, expresses their position, and draws conclusions.

The abstract is a purely theoretical work. At the same time, students learn not only how to search and analyze the sources, but also how to be accurate in terms of design – the abstract, like any research paper, is designed and defended by the rules. Methodical instructions are given on this matter.


A student’s reasoning on a certain issue. Also involves the study of literature on the topic, but here the center of gravity is not someone else’s opinion, but the author’s thoughts, own impressions, and thoughts.

In the essay, the author expresses themselves, but at the same time show that they have understood the topic: clearly stated the problem, are oriented in professional concepts and terms, provide facts and figures, provide arguments, and can answer questions. However, if you struggle with writing essays yourself, you can always check the best essay writing service on Reddit reviews to get some help, which makes this process less challenging.


A student’s research development during independent study outside the classroom. The student is involved in an applied or investigative project.

The purpose of an applied project is to create a product that solves a problem in a professional field. For example, an application, service, or device. The development can be implemented in a grown-up company.

The purpose of an investigative project is a detailed analysis of a problematic or unexplored topic. For example, to prepare scientific presentations at conferences or an application project.


The result of the student’s work during the course. It is assumed that they have managed to immerse themselves in the topic of interest.

Depending on the year of study, coursework becomes more complex. First-year students engage in theoretical research. Older students, in addition to analyzing the literature, add research methods, practical findings, and explanations of scientific data to the research paper.

Ideally, a student spends several years poring over a single topic. Courseworks on this topic are combined into a final qualifying paper.


The final work of a graduate student during their time at the university, the result of all the research work. An indicator of the readiness of a new specialist is a demonstration of the skills and knowledge acquired in the chosen profession.

In the thesis, the author describes how deeply they studied the problem of interest and what solution they propose.

Forms of scientific research work

In addition to the individual, mass forms of research work are also practiced. Here are some of them.

Section work

Higher education institutions often have clubs – voluntary associations of students engaged in research. Sections bring together people with common interests, they share experiences and information and help each other to advance their work. Participants put together discussions or exhibitions, make reports, do experiments, prepare publications for scientific journals, and write applications for research grants. Discuss popular science or science fiction films and books. Depending on the goals, the sections are divided into problem-based and scientific.

Student conferences

A conference is a meeting to discuss problematic issues, often theoretical. Student participation in conferences is encouraged but not considered mandatory. A willing student prepares a report based on his or her research paper. It is a public speaking experience, an opportunity to make useful acquaintances, and an opportunity to get a sensible commentary on a paper.


The student prepares articles for publication in scientific journals in co-authorship with the supervisor or under his supervision. This is not necessary for undergraduate students. But in graduate school, publication is one of the prerequisites for a degree. Ideally, a graduate student’s publication is an indicator of the quality of his or her academic work.

General principles of writing and formatting a research paper

A research paper begins with the choice of a topic that the student is interested in. The list of topics for scientific work is offered in the department, but the researcher has the right to lean on their interests and choose a topic on their own. The supervisor will help to choose the right wording.

The general organization of the scientific research work is as follows:

  • formulation of the problem on the topic, the definition of the object and subject of the research, setting the purpose and objectives, searching for the research method, and construction of the hypothesis. Everything is interconnected and requires specific formulation – the effectiveness of further work depends on it;
  • research and analysis of scientific literature on the topic, explanation of concepts and terms, and fill the research paper with theoretical data. The author delves into the topic and studies what else is written on it;
  • experiment, the practical part. The research can also be speculative – it depends on the purpose of the research paper. In any case, a situation is created, in which the author’s hypothesis is confirmed or denied;
  • generalization and evaluation of the results, formulation of proposals, prospects, and forecasts.

Theses of the research paper can be presented at the conference or formalized into an article for publication.

The research paper is made out strictly according to the rules. Usually, the student receives clear guidelines that take into account everything from page format to font and line spacing.

About the author 

Elle Gellrich

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