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How do I Write a Government Research Paper?

By G. Wiesen
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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Writing a government research paper is often much the same as any other type of research paper, and following certain steps can frequently make the experience much easier. You should begin by determining your topic or a specific aspect of the topic you have been assigned or chosen. This will allow you to more precisely perform research and gather the information you will need to write your paper. Once you do the research you can write an outline for your paper. You can then write your paper, following your outline, and utilizing proper style and citation guidelines for your class.

A government research paper should begin with a purpose or a subject about which you will be writing. This may be assigned by your instructor or you may be allowed to choose your own topic. In either case, you should have a strong sense of this subject or purpose. You can then begin to do the research you will need to actually create your paper, and research is often the most time consuming aspect of a paper.

Research for a government research paper will likely be performed in a library, though you should be ready to utilize the Internet as well. You should try to search not only for terms directly related to the subject of your paper, but also for related terms. For example, if your paper is about “The Creation of the US Constitution,” then you should look for materials directly related to this subject. You might also look for resources about the Articles of Confederation, the Bill of Rights, controversy over any aspects of the Constitution, and other related fields that can expand your initial research.

Once you have your research — and be sure to plan significant time for your research — you can create an outline for your paper. Regardless of what style you are going to use, usually the American Psychological Association (APA) style, you will need to have a direction for your paper. Your outline should give you a sense of how to begin your paper, where to go throughout the paper, and how to finish it. This can not only help you start your government research paper, but also assist you if you become stuck while writing it.

You can then write your government research paper more easily, using your outline as a reference to help you keep writing. Most instructors in a government class will insist that you use APA style for your paper, but you should be sure to find out for sure. If you do need to follow APA style guidelines, then you will want to ensure proper citation within your writing, as well as for your works cited at the end of the paper. You will also need to create a title page and abstract for your government research paper, in accordance with APA style, and you should do this after finishing your paper to make the abstract more complete and accurate.

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