Best Ideas for Research Paper Topics in 2020

Writing a research paper is something no college or university student can escape. At least, you are required to write one every semester. However, the writing process can be cumbersome, not to talk of coming by a topic. Selecting a subject for your research project is as important as its writing. If you miss out on that, you’re doomed to fail. On a few occasions, your professor may assign you a particular topic to research; however, the norm is that you come up with your own topic. In this piece, we will discuss how to choose a topic and add some examples.

How to select a research topic?

When selecting a subject, it is advisable to pick something, which is not overly exhausted or random. Your topic should be captivating and able to provoke further debate. As such, you should choose something which:

  1. You are interested in
    A research paper takes a long time to complete; hence, you should always pick a topic that interests you. It is undeniable that you come out with an exciting and thought-provoking paper when you work on a topic in your field of interest. That aside, you are able to commit yourself to it and explore the topic deeply, without being bored.
  2. Should be clear
    The topic you are choosing should be clear and well defined as to which aspect you are tackling. Knowing this helps you to execute the work efficiently and on time. If you have troubles, ask your supervisor for help to prevent you from getting stuck in the middle of your writing.

Research Paper Topic Ideas

Argumentative Research Paper Topics

  • Is shorter working days achievable?
  • Can an athlete be a good role model?
  • At what age can one legally consume alcohol?
  • Who is to blame for the rising homelessness?

Persuasive Research Paper Topics

  • Why it is wrong to use animals in scientific research
  • Parents need to monitor their children’s online activities
  • American should stay away from external conflicts
  • The rise in gender-based domestic violence

Controversial Topics for Research Paper

  • Should gay partners be allowed to adopt children?
  • Making STEM subjects compulsory for all
  • Addressing violence in media contents
  • Including sex education in school’s curricular

Research Paper Topics

  • Does the current college education system correspond to the job market needs?
  • Should disabled students have access to special accommodation arrangements?
  • Addressing child labor at the workplace
  • How terrorism can affect the fortune of businesses
  • Role of feminism in contemporary society
  • Are universities deviating from their core mandate?

High School Research Topics

  • Should the use of smartphones in schools be legalized?
  • Training students for leadership positions
  • Exploring Plato’s mathematics philosophy

College Research Paper Topics

  • Effects of menstruation on the girl child
  • How substance abuse affects the performance of college students
  • Causes of societal stereotype
  • The proof that AIDS is from monkeys

Topics on Technology

  • How technology can help in preventing terrorism
  • How cloud technologies managed to change data storing
  • How Bill Gates and Steve Jobs helped change the world

Topics on Environment

  • How the climate has changed in the last three decades
  • Is Global warming a hoax?
  • How do human activities influence global warming?
  • Managing pollution
  • How can we help prevent the extinction of endangered species?

5 Commonly Confused Elements of a Research Paper

To develop a top-notch research paper, you should first know it is structured and what each section entails. Also, you should know the purpose of each of the sections. That said, some of these sections and elements may seem to serve the same purpose and hardly do students differentiate their use. Sometimes, a paper writer may ponder if these elements are interchangeable. Some of these confusing elements are:

  1. Difference between aims and objectives
  2. “Implications” and “recommendations.”
  3. Citation and reference

Now let’s delve into some of the confusing sections of a research paper.

1. Difference between an “Abstract” and “Introduction”

An abstract summarizes the entire research paper in a few paragraphs. It entails the main points of the study, methodology, findings and conclusion. The abstract helps readers to know what your essay is about and whether to continue reading or not.

 On the other hand, the introduction sets the tone for your paper. It is where you introduce your topic, give background, highlight previous literature on it, the gap in them, and tell readers why it is worth researching.

In conclusion, the primary way to distinguish an abstract from the introduction is that an abstract contains the research method and findings, but the introduction doesn’t.

2. “Aim” and “objectives”

The aim of research stipulates the intended outcome of your study. The section talks about the goals and what it hopes to achieve after the investigation. It also includes what the researcher wishes to prove with the research. The aim is broad and gives no milestone for accomplishment.

The objective of your paper, however, includes the steps you may take to achieve your aim. It also comes with stages and milestones at which each aim can be achieved. Unlike aim, the objective is narrow in nature with a set timeframe for accomplishment.

3. “Introduction” and “problem statement”

The introduction is the first chapter of your research piece and provides the background information readers need to understand your study. It aims to grab the attention of readers; hence, it should contain a hook.

On the other hand, the problem statement forms an essential part of a research proposal and states the reasons for the study. It is usually intended to grab funders’ attention to provide grants or financial assistance for research. Though very brief, your problem statement explains the study’s purpose and what situation it seeks to address. For example, if you have identified a research gap that you intend to explore, clearly state it and how you wish to solve it. 

4. “Background of a study” and “literature review”

Both the background of study and literature review talks about existing literature or theories in the research area. However, the study background forms part of the introduction section that presents the topic and puts it in context.

The literature review, a standalone section, delves deeper into the topic and critically analyses it using previous literature.

5. “Research question” and “research problem”

The research problem is the entire reason for the particular study. What problem do you seek to address, what are the concerns necessitating research?

However, the research question is specific concerns you would want to address through the study. The research question is a subset of the research problem.