I. Introduction, Research Question, and Hypothesis: This section shall provide an overview of the topic that you are writing about, a concise synopsis of the issues, and why the topic presents a “puzzle” that prompts your research questions, which you will include. This section will be 1-2 pages. This section can be preceded by an epigraph that creates interest in the topic. Ensure that you follow proper format for epigraphs!!
II. Review of the Literature: All research projects include a literature review to set out for the reader what knowledge exists on the subject under study and helps the researcher develop the research strategy to use in the study. A good literature review is a thoughtful study of what has been written, a summary of the arguments that exist (whether you agree with them or not), arranged thematically. At the end of the summary, there should still be gaps in the literature that you intend to fill with your research. It is written in narrative format and can be from 3-5 pages depending on the scope and length of the paper.
As a literature review, this section should identify the common themes and theories that the prior research identified. In this section what you do is look at the conclusions of prior research and identify what the common themes are you see in those conclusions. You then identify those themes.
III. Methodology and Research Strategy: This section provides the reader with a description of how you carried out your qualitative research project, and the variables you identified and analyzed. It describes any special considerations and defines any limitations and terms specific to this project, if necessary. This section can be brief or more complicated, depending on the project, written in 1-2 pages.
IV. Analysis and findings are not the same as conclusions. In the analysis component of this section you identify how you analyzed the data. The second part is the finding you got from your analysis of the data. The findings are the facts that you developed, not your interpretation of the facts. That interpretation is conducted in the conclusions and recommendations section of the paper. Findings will come from the prior research you examined and your analysis of those prior findings to create new findings for your paper. While there may be some facts that are such that they will stand and translate to your paper, the intent is to create new knowledge, so you will normally analyze the data to create your own findings of what facts that data represents.
V. Conclusions and Recommendations is the section where you give your interpretation of the data. Here you tell the reader what the findings mean. Often the conclusions and recommendations sections will mirror the findings in construct as the researcher tells the reader what that researcher sees as the meaning of that data, their conclusions. Then, drawing on those conclusions, the researcher tells the reader what they believe needs to be done to solve/answer the research question. This section may include recognition of any needs for further research and then finishes with a traditional conclusion to the paper as a whole.
VI. References (or Bibliography): This section will contain all references, cited in Turabian Parenthetical format and alphabetically arranged. Entitle this section as “References”.