Results and discussion of a research paper
Acknowledgements Definition The purpose of the results and discussion of a research paper is to interpret and describe the significance of your findings in light of what was already known about the research problem being investigated, and to explain any new understanding or insights about the problem after you've taken the findings into consideration. The discussion will always connect to the introduction by way of the research questions or hypotheses you posed and the literature you reviewed, but it does not simply repeat or rearrange the introduction; the discussion should always explain how your study has moved the reader's understanding of the research problem forward from where you left them at the end of the introduction.
Importance of a Good Discussion This section is often considered the most important part of your research paper because this is where you: Most effectively demonstrates your ability as a researcher to think critically about an issue, to results and discussion of a research paper creative solutions to problems based upon a logical synthesis of the findings, and to formulate a deeper, more profound understanding of the research problem under investigation.
Present the underlying meaning of your research, note possible implications in other areas of study, and explore possible improvements that can be made in order to further develop the concerns of your research. If appropriate, the discussion section is also where you state how the findings from your study revealed new gaps in the literature that had not been previously exposed or adequately described.
If appropriate, the discussion section is also where you state how the findings from your study revealed new gaps in the literature that had not been previously exposed or adequately described. This is especially important when describing the discovery of significant or unanticipated findings. The measured values agree well with the calculated values. Bates College; Hess, Dean R. The page length of your results section is guided by the amount and types of data to be reported. Describe the site where your field study was conducted.
Engage the reader in thinking critically about issues based upon an evidence-based interpretation of findings; it is not governed strictly by objective reporting of information. San Francisco Edit, Structure and Source Style These are the general rules you should adopt when composing your discussion of the results: Do not be verbose or repetitive Be concise and make your points rfsearch Avoid using jargon Follow a logical stream of thought; in general, interpret and discuss the significance of your findings in the same sequence you described them in your results section Use the present verb tense, especially for established facts; however, refer to specific works or prior studies in the past tense If needed, use subheadings to help organize your discussion or to categorize your interpretations into themes II.
The Content The content of the discussion section of your paper most often includes: If appropriate, note any unusual or unanticipated patterns or trends that emerged from your results and explain their meaning in relation to the research problem. References to previous research: This can include re-visiting key sources already cited in your literature review section, or, save them to cite later in the discussion section if they are more important to compare with your results instead of being a part of the general literature review of research used to provide context and background information.
Note that you og make this decision to highlight specific studies after you have begun writing the discussion section.
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For example, describing lessons learned, proposing recommendations that can results and discussion of a research paper improve a situation, or highlighting best practices. This can be framed as new research questions that emerged as a result of your analysis. Organization and Structure Keep the following sequential points in mind as you organize and write the discussion section of your paper: Think of your discussion as an inverted pyramid.
Organize the discussion from the general to the specific, linking your findings to the literature, then to theory, then to practice [if appropriate]. Use the same key terms, narrative style, and verb tense [present] that you used when when describing the research problem in your introduction. Begin by briefly re-stating the research problem you were investigating and answer all of the research questions underpinning the problem that you posed in the introduction. Describe the patterns, principles, and relationships shown by each major findings and place them in proper perspective.
The sequence of this information is important; first state the answer, then the relevant results, then cite the work of others.
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If appropriate, refer the reader to a figure or rewearch to help enhance the interpretation of the data [either within the text or as an appendix]. The order of interpreting each major finding should be in the same order as they were described in your results section. A good discussion section includes analysis of discusaion unexpected findings. This part of the discussion should begin with a description of any unanticipated findings, followed by a brief interpretation as to why you believe it appeared and, paprr necessary, its possible significance in relation to the overall study.
If more than one unexpected finding emerged during the study, describe each them in the order they appeared as you gathered or analyzed the data. The exception to discussing findings in the same order you described them in the results section would be to begin by highlighting the implications of a particularly unexpected or significant finding that emerged from the study, followed by a discussion of the remaining findings.
Before concluding the discussion, identify potential limitations and weaknesses if you do not plan to do so in the conclusion. Comment click to see more their relative importance in relation to your overall interpretation of the results and, if necessary, note how they may affect the validity of your findings. Avoid using an apologetic tone; however, be honest and self-critical [e. The discussion section should end with a concise summary of the principal implications of the findings regardless of significance.
Give a brief explanation about why you believe the findings and conclusions of your study are important and how they support broader knowledge or understanding of the research problem. This can be followed by any recommendations for further research. However, do not offer recommendations which and have been easily addressed within the study.
This would demonstrate to the reader that you have inadequately examined and interpreted the data. Overall Objectives The objectives of your discussion section should include the following: You should write a direct, declarative, and succinct proclamation of the study results, usually in one paragraph. Explain the Meaning of the Findings and Why They are Important Consider the likelihood that no one has thought as long and hard about your study results and discussion of a research paper you have. Systematically explain the underlying meaning of your findings and state why you believe they are significant.
If applicable, begin this part of the section by repeating what you consider to be your most significant or unanticipated finding results and discussion of a research paper, then systematically review each finding.
- Every result included MUST have a method set out in the methods section.
- The measured values do not agree well with the calculated values.
- The order of interpreting each major finding should be in the same order as they were described in your results section.
Otherwise, follow the general order you reported the findings in the results section. Relate the Findings to Similar Studies No study in the social sciences is so novel or possesses results and discussion of a research paper a restricted focus that it has absolutely no relation to previously published research. The discussion section should relate your results to those found in other studies, particularly if questions raised from prior studies served as the motivation ciscussion your research.
This is important because comparing and contrasting the findings of other studies helps to support the overall importance of your results and it highlights how and in what ways your study differs from other research about the topic. Note that any significant or unanticipated finding is often because there was no prior research to indicate the finding could occur.
If there is prior research to indicate this, you need to explain why it was significant or unanticipated. Consider Alternative Explanations of the Findings It is important to remember that the purpose of research in the social sciences is to discover and not to prove. When writing the discussion section, you should carefully consider all possible explanations for the study results, rather than just those that fit your hypothesis or prior assumptions and biases. This is especially important when describing the discovery of significant or unanticipated findings.
Note any unanswered questions or issues your study did not address and describe the generalizability of your results to other situations. If a limitation is applicable to the method chosen to gather information, then describe in detail the problems you encountered and why. Make Suggestions for Further Research You may choose to conclude the discussion section by making suggestions for further research [this can be done in the overall conclusion of your paper].
Although your study may offer important insights about the research problem, this is where you can address other questions related to the problem that remain unanswered or highlight previously hidden questions that were revealed as a result of conducting your research. You should frame your suggestions by linking the need for further research to the limitations of your study [e. Besides the literature review section, the preponderance of references to sources is usually found in the discussion section.
A few historical references may be helpful for perspective but most of the references should be relatively recent and included to aid in the interpretation of your results or used to link to similar studies. If a study that you cited disagrees with your findings, don't ignore it--clearly explain why your research findings differ from theirs.
Problems to Avoid Do not waste continue reading restating your results. Should you need to remind the reader of a finding to be discussed, use "bridge sentences" that relate the result to the interpretation.
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An example would be: Recommendations for further research can be included in either the discussion or conclusion of your paper, but do not repeat your recommendations in the both sections. Think about the overall narrative flow of your paper to determine where best to locate this information. Do not introduce new results in the discussion section.
Be wary of mistaking the reiteration of a specific finding for an interpretation because it may confuse the reader. The description of rdsearch [results] and the interpretation of their significance [discussion] should be distinct sections of your paper. If you choose to combine the results section and the discussion section into a single narrative, you must be clear in how you report the information discovered and your own interpretation of each finding.
Use of the first person is generally acceptable. Using first person can help emphasize a point or illustrate a contrasting finding. However, keep in mind that too much use of the first person can actually distract the reader from the main points [i. Department of English Writing Guide. resultx
George Mason University; Discussion. The Structure, Format, Content, and Style of a Journal-Style Scientific Click. Bates College; Hess, Dean R. San Francisco Edit, ; The Lab Report. University College Writing Centre. University of Toronto; Sauaia, A. University of North Carolina; Schafer, Mickey S. Writing in Psychology course results and discussion of a research paper.
University of Florida; Yellin, Linda L. A Sociology Writer's Guide. Allyn and Bacon, Interpretation is a subjective exercise. As such, you should always approach the selection and interpretation of your findings introspectively and to think critically about the possibility of judgmental biases unintentionally entering into discussions about the significance of your work.
With this in mind, be careful that you do not read more into the findings than can be supported by the evidence you have gathered. Results and discussion of a research paper that the data are the data: Another Writing Tip Don't Write Two Results Sections! One of the most common mistakes that you can make when discussing the results of your study is to present a superficial interpretation of the findings that more or less re-states the results section of your paper. Obviously, you must refer to your results when discussing them, but focus on the interpretation of those results and their significance in relation to the research problem, not the data itself.
Yet Another Writing Tip Avoid Unwarranted Speculation! The discussion section should remain focused on the findings of your study. For example, if the purpose of your research was to measure the impact of foreign aid on increasing access to education among the poor in Bangladesh, it would not be appropriate to speculate about how your findings might apply to populations in other countries without drawing from existing studies to support your claim or if analysis of other countries was not a part of your original research design.
If you feel compelled to speculate, do so in the form of describing possible implications or explaining possible impacts. Be certain that you clearly identify your comments as speculation or as a suggestion for where further research is needed.