Students are expected to provide valid research paper references by their tutors. Credible references are those that a student identified in their textbooks, their university library or from peer reviewed articles. While some tutors do approve the use of minimal Internet research, it is important that the student ensures that the Internet sources they reference are valid.

It is expected that all research papers have certain common elements. At least, a research report should comprise an introduction, body paragraphs and a conclusion paragraph. The more in-depth research works should have, in addition to the introduction and conclusion, a chapter on the methods used, a literature review and a results section. Irrespective of the research type, all papers should contain a reference list. These research paper references are a list of the resources that the student relied on to produce the research paper.

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The Importance of Collecting Good Research Paper References

In comprehending what constitutes valid research paper references, the student needs to be able to distinguish what are facts and what is theory. For any individual, claiming to be an expert in their particular field, the writing or theory they put forward needs to be supported by facts, otherwise their work might be seen to lack credibility and, therefore, unreliable. A lot of students see Wiki sites as providing credible facts. While the information offered in Wiki sites might indeed be reliable, it is not subjected to the type of review procedure or firm research that guarantees its credibility. So, do not rely on such sites as valid research paper references providers.

But, Wiki sites are adequate sources to collect research references. Although the data itself cannot be depended on as credible, a student might be able to collect reference information from the material provided to produce the Wiki entry. The end section of Wiki entries contain reference lists that were used to create the entry. So, in doing this, the student can locate a plethora of references for their own research work.

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A reference list should start on a fresh page, appended to the end of a document. The research paper reference must follow the particular format or style set out in the course tutor's instructions. Style guides are available to students from different sources or most college writing centres will provide guidelines on writing styles. But as a general idea, each research paper reference should show the writer's name, the name of the reference work (the paper or book name, etc), the publication date and the publisher's name.

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