Are you confused about how to write your research paper? Worry not. This article will tackle tips on how to title a research paper, helping you reel in a substantial audience.
As the cliched adage goes: give a dog a bad name and kill it. Similar to a gift, your research paper should be packaged in a neat title to evoke curiosity from your readers, therefore motivating them to interact with your paper further.
However, students often face a challenge in creating quality titles for their papers. without further ado, let’s dive into the criteria for selecting a good research title.
What is a good title?
A good research paper title should be capable of piquing your reader’s interest and predicting the key concepts of your paper. The title thus allows readers to determine the relevance of your paper to their research, ensuring ample traffic for your paper.
Also, a good title should reflect the tone of your paper and reflect the keyword for easy listing on search engines. Provided that your title meets these criteria, there are a few limitations to the type of title you select.
You can thus select a sentence title or a question-form title and attract a substantial flow of readers to your paper.
How to make a good research title
Often, you may have a ton of ideas for your research paper title and struggle to select the best option for your paper. this challenge in formulating a research title can be overcome by following the steps below.
- Clarify the ‘what’s’ of your paper
Before you write your paper title, ask yourself:
- What is my paper’s main subject?
- What methodology was applied in my research?
- What were my findings?
Upon elaborating on these answers, you are better placed to write a title that is both enticing and explanatory to the reader.
- Identify your main keyword
Next, analyse the key phrase that contains the main idea of your paper and integrate it with the method, subject, and findings of your study. this not only ensures that your paper clearly defines your topic but also helps some search engines in the ranking of your paper.
- Trim fluff words
The general word limit of research papers is between twelve and fifteen words. This range may be defined in your faculty guidelines or within the instructions for your selected referencing style.
After coming up with a sentence containing the aforementioned items, cut off unnecessary words, leaving behind relevant information. Also, do away with unnecessary jargon opting instead for simpler words that readers can easily comprehend.
- Revisit the faculty guidelines
Finally, recheck the faculty guidelines on the title page for the research paper and edit your work to conform to the stipulated rules.
How to format the title page for a research paper
The title page of a research paper has slight differences depending on the referencing style used for your paper.
When using the APA referencing style, for instance, you are allowed a maximum of twelve words in the title. Also, the title should be placed halfway down the page and centred. Also, your title should be emboldened and a space inserted below the title just before listing your name, affiliation, course title, the instructor’s name, and the due date.
Conversely, the MLA title page is optional depending on your faculty’s guidelines. Often, you should add a running head and your identifying information before inserting your title 1/3-way down the page. Also, the MLA title needs not to be emboldened and can thus be simply centred at the start of your essay.
Can titles be questions?
Although no format is recommended for research paper titles, we advise you to avoid questions as they can be confusing. Often, question-form titles fail to highlight the methodology and findings of your research, losing their potency to attract readers.
Also, some tutors advise against such titles and could therefore penalize you for the same.
Example of title in research
- The importance of the American Civil War for common Americans and African Americans.
- Analysis of Donald Trump’s impact on the United States and other countries.
- List the several methods the American government can lower the number of fatalities brought on by the unchecked use of firearms.
- Why should people be permitted to give their organs in exchange for cash?
- Examine and debate the claim that terrorism engenders a fear culture that can breed unintentional terrorists inside a society.
- Examine the effects of DDT usage and removal on the bird population in your nation.