How to Write an Analytical Research Paper on School Lunches
This article provides five steps in the process of writing an analytical research paper on school lunches. In an analytical research paper you will evaluate your topic and draw unbiased conclusions from your research, referencing a variety of reputable sources.
In an analytical research paper on school lunches, your thesis will provide a general claim about school lunches, without stating your personal stance. You will not be arguing for or against school lunches in this paper. Rather, you will design a logical series of claims based on established research from a variety of perspectives on the subject.
Step 1: Narrow your Topic to Create a Thesis
Your general topic is school lunches, and for this paper you will narrow that topic to make your general claim. This claim will establish your analytical thesis. First, read some basic background articles about school lunches to understand important issues related to the topic. Write down a few possible main ideas to choose from.
For example, you may choose to write your research paper on the history of school lunches in the United States, or present a balanced variety of expert perspectives on school lunches. Your thesis will focus your essay on a subtopic within the broader topic of school lunches.
Choose a thesis that is both meaningful and relevant in order to maintain your reader’s attention.
Your thesis in the introduction paragraph should be no more than one or two complete sentences.
Step 2: Research with Reputable Sources
Once you have written your thesis, you may begin to actively research school lunches. Identify at least four reliable references as you begin to take notes on your research. Highlight or bookmark essential ideas and quotations that help to clarify your topic. These are items you may choose to either directly quote or paraphrase in your final paper.
You may wish to take note of specific facts and statistics related to school lunches, or important moments in the history of its influence on society or school districts.
Keep track of the sources you consult for your research, as you will cite these in your bibliography.
Step 3: Write an Outline
Now that you have gathered information, you can begin an outline by first choosing at least three claims to support your thesis. These claims will become the topic sentences for each of the claim paragraphs in your paper.
The outline will help you choose the order in which your claims are presented. Remember to keep your thesis in the introduction. Your claim paragraphs will become the body of your essay. Your conclusion can include both a synthesis of the research you covered and a summary of your thesis.
An outline can be created as a list of steps, or you may use index cards to “play around” with the order of claim topics. Alternately, you may use a visual template to design your outline.
Step 4. Write your Draft
Using the WriteWell Template, Analytical Research Paper on School Lunches, begin to write your analytical research paper. Present your claims in order by starting with your thesis in the introduction paragraph. Your introduction can also include essential background information to your reader, providing the context for your paper.
For each claim paragraph. include a clear topic sentence. A topic sentence states a claim without conveying a personal stance on the topic. For each claim paragraph, include evidence from your research and cite your sources.
Typical ways to provide evidence to enhance your claims include providing official facts and statistics, historical references, descriptions of newsworthy events and direct quotations from experts knowledgeable about school lunches.
Depending on the length requirements for your paper, you may include as many claim paragraphs as you wish to support your thesis.
Your conclusion is the most effective when it summarizes but does not repeat your thesis and often provides a “call to action” or “take-away” piece of information for your reader. This is something your reader can do learn more about school lunches or embark on their own research.
Step 5: Edit your Essay and add a Bibliography/References Page
Once you have your draft, read through it and make essential edits. Start with a basic spelling or grammar check.
Double-check that your research paper has a clear introduction with a thesis, a body and a conclusion. Check that your claims are unique from one another and not repetitive. Be sure that you have included the required number of references and that you have appropriately cited the sources you’ve consulted or quoted.
Check that your thesis has been accurately summarized in your conclusion, and that your conclusion also reflects the claims you have made throughout the paper. .
Finally, create your Bibliography/References page using an established academic format such a MLA or APA. You may wish to use an online reference generator such as EasyBib.com or CitationMachine.net.