Free Essay

Common Errors in Research Report Writing

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By nseemmanuel
Words 1336
Pages 6
ABSTRACT Research assignments give you an opportunity to demonstrate practically the skills and knowledge learnt so far in class within the end of a particular study. This article highlighted some common mistakes made by students in research paper writing. Textbooks, internet, and correction given during class seminar presentation constituted the sources of information gathered. It was realized that in the effort to give the best in writing research papers, students unconsciously make mistakes in topic selection, objectives of research, writing format hypothesis or thesis statement, literature review, research methodology, paragraphing, use of tense in sentence construction, referencing and quoting to mention but a few. This writing also incorporated some tips in avoiding these mistakes mentioned and therefore concluded and recommended that The mistakes stated above should be avoided at all cost when writing research papers. They can contribute to low grades or disqualification of your project. Therefore, it is advisable that students seek for guidance from their instructors or professionals in research papers writing.

INRODUCTION
Research assignments give you an opportunity to demonstrate practically the skills and knowledge learnt in class. In the effort to give the best in writing research papers, students unconsciously make mistakes. This article highlights common mistakes students make in research paper writing especially in their early days of undertaking research assignments. COMMON ERRORS IN RESEARCH REPORT WRITING
Topic selection some students’ select wide topics making it difficult to provide a satisfactory answer. On the other hand, the topics can be too narrow that the writer does not have room to explore.
Objectives of the research ; Coming up with very ambitious research objectives, lacking a depth in research, presenting descriptive researches and failure to create a link between your research objectives and realities on the ground.
Writing formats; Using more than one format in writing research papers, for instance, giving in text citation in Harvard and the bibliography in APA.
Hypothesis or thesis statement; Formulating or creating a general hypothesis or thesis statement that does not address a particular issue, and creating a trivial thesis statement or hypothesis that cannot be tested because of unavailability of data.
Literature review; Focusing on general literature as opposed to literature specific to your project, giving titles for sources and the names of authors, and using outdated resource materials.

Research methodology
• Using data collection and analysis methods that are not suitable to the research,
• Applying in adequate methods,- some researches require that you use more than one method to get the desired results
• Methods that do not demonstrate a clear relationship between data collected and variables under investigation.
Incoherent Paragraphs ; Paragraphing as the key unit of research report should have its essential qualities which are unity and coherentness. Unity such that it deals with only one main idea or topic which every sentence in the paragraph relates to and coherent in that the each sentence in the paragraph must develop the point naturally and logically.
Use of Colloquial expression; these are expressions or language used in informal situations. A colloquial expression diffuses meanings and may be interpreted differently by different readers but since research writing is a formal writing therefore should be treated as such..
Wrong Word Choice; Choose a word that means exactly what you intend them to mean, and that would mean the same thing to your readers to avoid misinterpretation.
Outmoded / Overworked Words and Phrase refer to Oyetunde O.O (2002:93) in Writing Research projects
For example; Avoid Use At all time always by means of by along the lines of like at that time then due to the fact that as, because, since
Unnecessary Repetitions Refer to O.O Oyetunde (2002 :92)
For example; Avoid Use And etc Both alike alike may perhaps may Loose out loose at about about Summaries briefly summaries Direct Quotes; When you write a paper related to literature, history, current events, and many other fields, direct quotes may be essential to a full discussion of the subject. In science, there is very rarely any call for a direct quote. On student papers, there is no reason at all to include direct quotes, except in the case when the student doesn't understand the concept and uses the quote to avoid having to explain it his/herself. Obviously, this doesn't go over too well with the grader. As a rule, do not use direct quotes in a scholarly technical paper. Your own thoughts must be expressed, not those of someone else. Grammar and spelling Error; Spelling errors in a paper make you look amateurish. For example, absorbance is read from a spectrophotometer. You don't read absorbency from a spectrometer. Grammar and spelling error can change the entire meaning of your writing. One letter changes the chemical compound you describe For example I know the action of cycloheximide in eukaryotic cells, but I do not know the action of cyclohexamide. Avoid obvious grammatical errors. However, clear written communication requires proper sentence structure and use of words. Make sure that your sentences are complete, that they make sense when you proofread, and that you have verb/subject agreement. Tips for Avoiding Common Research Paper Mistakes
Composing a research paper is a time, focus, and effort intensive activity that every college and university student must undertake there the following are tips to avoiding the most common mistakes found in research papers.
1. Write Well – Sloppy writing is the number one reason research papers receive low grades and therefore should be avoided.
2. Stay focused – . Wandering off the topic is one of the common focus mistakes made by students.
3. Keep it in perspective – One of the greatest challenges of writing a research paper is determining the major and minor points of the composition. This requires an evaluation of the sources used as well as a decision of which points to emphasize. Confusion of major and minor points is considered a weakness and result in a lower grade than that earned by a research paper with clear priorities.
4. Incorporate references – Too many or too few references within the research paper are common mistakes. Additionally, it is advised to keep correctly cited, direct quotations to a minimum and use them only when they assist with strengthening a point.
5. Write lean – students who write and write and write about one thing over and over is a common mistake that fill the research paper with repetitive, irrelevant, and over-written content. This is a clear sign that the student either has nothing of interest to say on the topic or did not complete adequate research.
6. Bring it up-to-date – The most impressive research papers use all the latest findings and publications in the piece. While historical works can be used and are even desirable for many topics, it is always advised to limit other sources to the last five or ten years.
7. Draw the boundaries – There are literally millions of topics that can be covered with a model research paper, perhaps even more! Many students do not take the time to limit the scope and set the boundaries for their research paper topic. This can lead to many of the mistakes above, which can be avoided simply by narrowing the area to be covered in the model research paper.
8. Follow the citation style – follow a specific citation style for each paper as required. This is not, nor will it be, negotiable! Every detail of APA, MLA, Chicago, or any other format must be followed literally to the letter.
9. Use simple, unity and coherent sentences in a paragraph
10. Avoid the use of colloquial language, unnecessary repetition , outmoded words and phrases. RECOMMENDATION
• The mistakes stated above should be avoided at all cost when writing research papers. They can contribute to low grades or disqualification of your project. Therefore, it is advisable that students seek for guidance from their instructors or professionals in research papers writing.

REFERENCES
Oyetunde O.O (2002). Writing research projects, journal articles, conference papers and documenting references accurately www.Bestessaywritting.com www.indiana.edu’/grant/resources

Similar Documents

Free Essay

Hybrid Proposal

...Date: March 11th, 2012 To: From: Subject: Proposal to Research Alternative Energy in Vehicles I have received your RFP and have written up a proposal based on the requirements you have listed. This proposal outlines the research I would like to continue regarding the feasibility of alternative energy sources in vehicles, particularly in hybrid vehicles. I have included a summary of the topic, a description of the graphics I plan to use, deadlines that will be met, costs involved, and an outline for the report. I am quite eager to research this topic more and appreciate you taking the time to read through this proposal. If you need to get a hold of me, you can reach me at bpryan@ualberta.ca. Attached: “Proposal: Are Hybrids Really That Good?” Proposal: Are Hybrids Really That Good? Introduction The following is a proposal to write a research report analysing the efficiency and environmental sustainability of switching from a traditional fuel burning vehicle to a hybrid. This proposal will contain some information on the contents of the research paper, a presumed audience level, a schedule and outline for the areas I will address in the paper, as well as my qualifications for researching this topic. A budget as well as a list of project deadlines will also be added to the end of this proposal. With regards to my topic, it will focus on the most common type of hybrid: the electric hybrid. This vehicle combines an internal combustion engine with......

Words: 1138 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Technical Writing Report

...Technical The Basics of Technical Writing for Management Information Systems Professionals David J. Donahoo Associate Professor, Liberty University Lynchburg, Virginia Submitted in Accordance With Guidance in the CSIS 100 Syllabus Abstract This paper provides students in the CSIS 100 course with an introduction to technical writing—one of the critical success factors for their future employment and career advancement. In this paper, students will be exposed to Four basic skills that will improve your technical writing. These include: flow and format, writing in complete thoughts, proper use of white space, and readability. This paper provides various tips to help you be successful in your college research writing and your follow-on professional life. Table of Contents Abstract 3 Introduction 6 General Concepts 6 Flow and Format 7 Flow 7 Flow Tips and Pointers 7 TIP 1:  Body 8 TIP 2: Introduction 8 TIP 3: Conclusion 8 Format 9 Complete Thoughts 9 White Space 10 Readability 11 Conclusion 12 Sample References 13 Introduction No matter where you are at in your life-long educational or professional career you will benefit from honing your technical writing skills. Believe me when I say this; technical writing takes your normal writing skills in a different direction. Some of the things you received praise from in high school composition classes will draw scorn......

Words: 2011 - Pages: 9

Free Essay

Lab Reports

...C8057 (Research Methods in Psychology): Writing Laboratory Reports Writing Lab Reports & APA Format Structure and Content of a Laboratory Report This following provides a brief overview of the structure and content of various elements in a laboratory report, based on APA guidelines. The APA publication manual can be referred to for more detail. The purpose of a lab report is to communicate research in a clear, systematic and standardised way. Primarily, a lab report should communicate the following things: → Why did I bother? Why did I do this experiment and why is it an interesting contribution to science? → How did I do it? How did I carry out this research (this should be detailed enough so that the experiment could be replicated precisely)? → What did I find? What were the results of your study? → So What? What do your findings mean in terms of your hypotheses and what theoretical contribution do they make? IMPORTANT! The advice that we give you in this handout is not inflexible, it is a guide! For example, when we say that the title should be fewer than 15 words, the world will not end if your title is 16 words. So, please use your common sense. In case you don’t have any, the snail of sense will appear to give you some advice. Format There are several sections to a lab report: → Title → Abstract → Introduction → Method o o o o o → Results → Discussion → References → Appendix (Optional) Title Your title should ideally be fewer than 15 words. A good title alerts the......

Words: 7238 - Pages: 29

Free Essay

Apa Guidelines

...C8057 (Research Methods in Psychology): Writing Laboratory Reports Writing Lab Reports & APA Format Structure and Content of a Laboratory Report This following provides a brief overview of the structure and content of various elements in a laboratory report, based on APA guidelines. The APA publication manual can be referred to for more detail. The purpose of a lab report is to communicate research in a clear, systematic and standardised way. Primarily, a lab report should communicate the following things: → Why did I bother? Why did I do this experiment and why is it an interesting contribution to science? → How did I do it? How did I carry out this research (this should be detailed enough so that the experiment could be replicated precisely)? → What did I find? What were the results of your study? → So What? What do your findings mean in terms of your hypotheses and what theoretical contribution do they make? IMPORTANT! The advice that we give you in this handout is not inflexible, it is a guide! For example, when we say that the title should be fewer than 15 words, the world will not end if your title is 16 words. So, please use your common sense. In case you don’t have any, the snail of sense will appear to give you some advice. Format There are several sections to a lab report: → Title → Abstract → Introduction → Method o o o o o → Results → Discussion → References → Appendix (Optional) Title Your title should ideally be fewer than 15 words. A good title alerts the......

Words: 7238 - Pages: 29

Free Essay

Unit 4 Exercise 1 Comp 1(En1320 Itt)

...Unit 4 Exercise 1: 1. The basic format for a proposal includes the following steps: Introduction Problem Analysis; major causes, Evidence and Effects of the probem. Plan for solving the problem: Major steps, Support and Deliverables. Benefits of the Plan: Costs-benefits analysis Conclusion 2. Proposals are used in college, in the workplace and anywhere you want to pitch a proposal or new project idea including grant writing. 3. The steps for inventing your proposal’s content are defining the problem, analyzing the problem, researching, inquiring, and finding similar projects. 4. The three primary sources of information for proposal writing are online, print, and empirical sources. 5. The steps to planning to solve the problem are map out the plan, explore each major step, figure out costs and benefits, and finding similar projects. 6. Costs and benefits should be listed to prove to the readers that the benefits of their investment are worth the risks. 7. In choosing an appropriate style, the steps are creating an Authoritative Tone, use metaphors and similes, pay attention to Sentence Length, and minimize the jargon. 8. Three tips for designing the proposal are creating a look, create white space and use meaningful headings. 9. The four steps in revising and editing a proposal are looking for inconsistencies in content, getting rid of extra stuff, tweaking the design and proof reading. 10. Five major problems listed are......

Words: 1239 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

English for Written Communication

...Topic 1 Introduction to Communication 1.1 WHAT IS COMMUNICATION? Communication is a learned skill. Communication is defined as the giving, receiving or exchanging of information, opinions or ideas so that the message is completely understood by everybody involved. The sender sends a message out with a certain intention in mind. The receiver of the message tries to understand and interpret the message sent. He then gives feedback to the original sender who, in turn, interprets the feedback. This process, repeated continuously, constitutes communication. ➢ Elements in Communication There are several major elements in the communication process - a sender, message, channel, receiver, feedback, context. There is both a speaker’s intention to convey a message and a listener’s reception of what has been said. If you want to get your message across accurately, you need to consider three things: - The message; - The audience or receiver; and - How the message is likely to be received. ➢ Factors Affecting Communication Barriers to effective communication:- (a) Status/Role (b) Cultural Differences (c) Choice of Communication Channels (d) Length of Communication (e) Use of Language (f) Disabilities (g) Known or Unknown Receiver (h) Individual Perceptions/Attitudes/Personalities (i) Atmosphere/Noise/Distraction (j) Clarity of Message (k) Lack of Feedback 1.2 DEFINING WRITTEN COMMUNICATION - Oral communication involves conveying ideas, thoughts or......

Words: 8810 - Pages: 36

Premium Essay

Academic and Proffesional Writing

...Explain the following strategies of writing 1. Evaluating -evaluating is the process is the process of determining the value and importance of writing. This enables the writer to determine the quality of writing to write that will make the audience be attracted to your article. It also helps the writer to make his writing purposeful so that to fulfill the intention of writing. 2. Interpreting Refers to the process of being able to come up with the meaning of the writing. This enables the writer to effectively write because he/she is able to evaluate what entails the writing. 3. Exploring Refers to the process of going through and doing research on the type of writing to write. This equips the writer with experience on what and how to write. It also enables the writer to determine to who he/she is writing to. 4. Discussing and examining Discussing involves the progress of considering and examining a writing by argument and giving comments till a solution is reached, while examining refers to inspecting carefully to test the knowledge and qualification of whatever the writer is going to write. Discussing and examining makes the writer knowledgeable and experienced in writing. PURPOSE OF ACADEMIC WRITING 1. Presentation of information that indicates understanding of the subject matter. 2. Persuasion is intended to convince the audience by offering convincing argument that supports your point of view. 3. Informative writing aims at passing information and......

Words: 878 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

Strategic Management

...CHALLENGES STUDENTS FACE IN LEARNING ESSAY WRITING SKILLS IN ENGLISH AS A SECOND LANGUAGE IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS IN MANGA DISTRICT, NYAMIRA COUNTY, KENYA BY NYANG’AU BENARD NYASIMI E55/CE/14078/2009 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF EDUCATION IN THE SCHOOL OF EDUCATION KENYATTA UNIVERSITY JULY 2013 * DECLARATION This thesis is my original work and has not been presented for degree in any other university. Signature: ______________________________ Date: ________________________ BY NYANG’AU BENARD NYASIMI E55/CE/14078/2009 We confirm that this thesis was carried out by the candidate under our supervision as university supervisors. Signature------------------------------------------------------ Date-------------------------- Dr .Sophia. Ndethiu. Department of Educational Communication and Technology. Kenyatta University. Signature------------------------------------------------------ Date------------------------- Dr. John. Kimemia. Department of Educational Communication and Technology. Kenyatta University. * DEDICATION This work is dedicated to my loving wife Zipporah Nyasimi and our sons Philemon Siko and Enock Ongeri . * ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I wish to acknowledge the support of those individuals who made it possible for a successful completion of this work. Special thanks go to my supervisors Dr. Sophia Ndethiu and Dr. John. Kimemia for the support,......

Words: 21036 - Pages: 85

Free Essay

Technical Report Writing

...THE UNIVERSITY OF THE WEST INDIES ST. AUGUSTINE, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO, WEST INDIES FACULTY OF ENGINEERING & ENGINEERING STUDENTS’ SOCIETY Technical Report Writing Workshop Facilitated by: Halcyon Lawrence March 03, 2007 Table of Contents Topic 1: The Communication Model ............................................................................. 4 Topic 2: Five Cs of Technical Communication .............................................................. 7 Clarity ............................................................................................................................. 7 Structural Clarity (document level) ............................................................................ 7 Stylistic Clarity ........................................................................................................... 7 Grammatical Clarity.................................................................................................... 7 Contextual Clarity....................................................................................................... 7 Conciseness..................................................................................................................... 8 Document level Conciseness ...................................................................................... 8 Paragraph/sentence level Conciseness........................................................................ 8 Concreteness ......................................

Words: 11012 - Pages: 45

Premium Essay

Thesis 202

...mixed delivery methods which utilize group discussion, dyadic work, and peer review, to name a few, all of which minimize lecturing. In-class participation has become increasingly important with millennial generation students who demand more interaction from their classroom experience (Allred & Swenson, 2006; Howe & Strauss, 2000). In particular, Tony VN. Figuera of Mindanao Times (2006) stated that the inability of students to argue in class and their phobia for oral exams are only two of the discrepant behaviors that educators observe in school. This attitude of not being able to communicate also extends to the failures of the students to develop writing skill. It is for this purpose that this study was conducted. Most of the people said that if a student is active in oral communication, he is passive in writing. However, with the theory of Tony VN. Figuera, the researchers would like to know which presumption is consistent, accurate and factual. We...

Words: 6383 - Pages: 26

Premium Essay

Toumlin Essay Online Education

...have to face struggle in the years they are in college as far as tuition is concerned. Faced with these struggles, students have limited options and they end up with either skipping the school, or opting for a community college. With the costs of tuition rising every year, one faces the obvious dilemma of either going for a college degree or opting for an online degree. Online degree programs are getting quite popular now a day’s among working class people too. They can pursue a degree from the comfort of their home and not only that, they can pursue it at their own pace, and of course there are deadlines to be met in an online course too. An article in USNews.com reports,” The number of college students enrolled in at least one online course increased for the ninth straight year, according to the Babson Survey Research Group's annual survey of more than 2,500 colleges and universities—including both...

Words: 2199 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

How to Write Sample

...Writing Samples Sometimes employers request writing samples with the application materials or want them brought to an interview. Writing samples allow employers to evaluate your writing skills, communication style, and ability to express yourself. Any employer whose position requires writing skills may want samples, but writing samples are more common in publishing, public relations, advertising, media, research, and law. Content of the Sample The employer may identify the desired topic. If not, choose a subject that you are interested in and that is related to the job or field to which you are applying. Avoid controversial or politically based topics. You want the employer to focus on your style and skill as a writer, not judge what you write. Appropriate Writing Samples Just like your resume and cover letter, tailor your sample to fit the job if possible. Follow the instructions provided by the employer or in the job description. If the requirements are not specified, use the following guidelines to help you choose an appropriate sample: * Use the job posting to guide your choice and show the employer you possess the required skills. For example, if the position is research-based, provide an example of research work from your college career or for a previous employer. * Newspaper article, story for a newsletter, press release, policy brief, or research report or any other published piece. When submitting a previously published piece to an employer, be......

Words: 728 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Editing

...Research Paper Goal: To present a critical analysis on a topic of interest in sensation and perception research. This will be an overview paper reporting the major components of some topic of current (from 2005 to the present) research in the field of sensation or perception. Ideas for topics might include, but are by no means limited to the following: • Neuroscience and brain imaging (e.g., CT, fMRI, PET, EEG) • Vision and visual acuity • Agnosia • Functions of the thalamus in S & P • Function of the lateral geniculate nucleus • Function of the medial geniculate nucleus • Object Perception • Signal detection theory • Audition and auditory problems • Autism and S and P • Language perception • Color vision • Gender differences in sensation & perception • Neuroscience and cognition • Prosopagnosia • Hemispheric neglect • Drug abuse and perception • Motion perception • Parkinson’s Disease and perception • Alzheimer’s Disease and S & P • Testing perception in infants • Flavor Perception • Capgras’ delusion Certainly, the topics are by no means limited to those suggested above. If you have an interesting idea or want to explore another area under the general umbrella of research in Sensation and Perception, you are encouraged to do so. Browse your textbook if you simply cannot think of something to write about. Paper Requirements: All papers must be written using an APA format. Papers must be double-spaced, using 10- or 12-point, Times New......

Words: 1218 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Important G3

...GS text for a. an answer to an examination question, b. an opening paragraph of an assignment, or c. a background (or scene-setting) paragraph to an analysis or discussion begins with one of the following a. a short or extended definition, b. a contrastive or comparative definition, or c. a generalization or purpose statement General statement – More specific detail – Specific detail – Broader statement “Writing passage begins with a definition; definitions are a common way of getting started. (unfamiliar reader – used to clarify terms / familiar reader – expected you to demonstrate your understanding of complex concepts) Sentence Definition; To what class does (Definition) belong? How is it different / would you define? (Compare / Cause) A term is (a) class wh-word/that specific detail. Indefinite article / before both the term and class Ex) Annealing is a metalworking process / A star is a celestial body A disinfectant is an/the agent capable of destroying disease causing microorganisms. An; it does not refer to a particular representative. The; indentifies or describes the term, some previous mention of other agents. The distinguishing information in the restrictive relative clause - one involves a simple deletion / the other involves a change in word form or an entire word. 1) Enamel, in dentistry, is a hard, white inorganic material (that is) on the crown of a tooth. : the verb to be 2) A collagen is a white, inelastic protein......

Words: 5740 - Pages: 23

Premium Essay

Thyt

...Writing Tips For Economics Research Papers∗ Plamen Nikolov, Harvard University † June 10, 2013 1 General Tips about Writing Style When I read your term papers, I look for your ability to motivate your question using economic logic, your ability to critically analyze the past literature, and your ability to recognize empirical problems as they arise. In particular, it is important that your term paper demonstrates that you are more knowledgeable, analytic, and sophisticated about the economics of health or development economics than we would expect, say, a clever editorial writer for The New York Times to be. You should present evidence, cite literature, explain economic trade-os, and generally approach the issue from an analytic perspective. Sometimes, a student is tempted to stray into opinion-page, journalistic writing in his or her term paper. Do not do this. Teaching good economics writing is one of the goals of the departmental writing requirement and is a valuable lesson for potential thesis writers. You will get a lower grade if your writing is • ungrammatical, • unclear, • journalistic. If you have trouble writing grammatically, please leave yourself some extra time and go to a writing 1 tutor . Clarity is the rst priority in economics writing. Do not worry about being  snappy if you are being clear. Journalistic writing is characterized by the lack of an analytical tone. Below, you will nd some notes about......

Words: 12292 - Pages: 50