Important elements of a research paper
In the current era of globalization, academic institutions strive for global recognition. For most ranking executives and global accreditations such as AACSB, EQUIS, AMBA, research is an important part. Therefore, most academic institutions have started to emphasize quality research by their faculty members. Due to this change of academic environment, for promotions and recruitments of professors, research publications in leading journals become an important criterion.
Publishing in top journals has now become very difficult due to the exponential growth in research article submissions. In most of the leading journals from ABDC, ABS, FT 50, UT Dallas, the acceptance rate is less than five percent. Most of the research articles submitted to these leading journals are rejected by the editors. The main reason for rejecting the manuscript is the unstructured presentation. Usually, the research paper should describe all components of the research completely and in plain language for easy audience understanding. The main elements of the research paper are title selection, summary, introduction, literature review, research methodology, results, discussion, managerial implications, conclusion, limitations and future scope .
Title selection is the first step in writing a quality research paper. Usually, the title should specifically predict the content of the manuscript. The second part of the research paper is abstract. The summary should be neat. Usually the abstract size should be around 200 words. He must be able to provide as much information as possible with limited words. The abstract should briefly describe the objectives of the study, the research methods used in the study, the main findings and implications. At the end of the abstract, authors should provide four to five keywords. Keywords make it easier for other researchers to find articles. After the summary, the next component of the research paper is the introduction. The introduction should set the initial tone for the research paper. The introduction should provide general information about the research topic, the reasons why this study is being conducted based on the significant research gaps, the research objectives and research questions, the scope of the research, the uniqueness and novelty of the study and the last paragraph of the introduction should focus on the full paper organization. The length of the introduction should not exceed one fifth of the total size of the research paper.
The next part of the research document is the literature review. The purpose of the literature review is to synthesize previous research related to the topic of the article. Based on previous studies, authors should try to identify research gaps to prove the study’s uniqueness. Most researchers are wrong in this part because the study problem is not identified on the basis of the research gaps and the articles are rejected by the editors. Authors should prefer to refer to the latest research articles for at least ten years. If the authors target a particular journal, care should be taken to ensure that no articles from that journal in the identified research area are left for review. The next element of the article is the research methodology. It should be well written, clear and logically organized. It should be related to the research objectives of the article. There may be different types of research methods, such as case studies, empirical studies, or modeling. Authors should clearly justify the use of a specific methodology. It is also desirable that the different stages of the research methodology be presented in the form of a flowchart.
After the research methodology, the results section should be described. The results section should clearly describe all results sequentially. Whenever possible, results should be presented in tabular and figure form without any repetition. Authors should describe the results honestly without distorting the data. After the results section, the results discussion is done. The results should be interpreted in the context of the research questions mentioned in the document. The results should also be compared with previous studies carried out in the same field. Usually, authors skip the discussion section after describing the results. After discussion, the authors should also give the managerial implications of the results. While the implications of the study are not significant for academia and industry, the chances of acceptance of the paper are generally lower. Finally, the authors must give the conclusion of the study. In this section, the authors should briefly recall the objectives, the main findings, the unique contribution, the limitations and the future scope of the study. In the end, it is recommended that authors try to maintain a flow of content throughout the document for better readability.
The opinions expressed above are those of the author.
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