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Further reading on basic structures of RA

Further readings on other common structures of research articles

Welcome back to our second lesson on “Deconstructing Research Articles.”

Here, I hope you have already had your self-selected research article ready because, in this lesson, we will start to reflect on the example you have in your own field. Today we will be talking about structure and the common organization of the content in research articles.

Here is a basic structure of research articles. As you can see, there are four distinct parts and they all resemble a different shapes. The first part of a research article is the introduction. Yes, as you might know. The second section, okay, is the narrow rectangle. It is usually the methodology of a research article. And in the same shape, we have a results section. And next, guess what? Discussion. That’s why it’s called I.M.R.D. structure. I.M.R.D. stands for introduction, methodology, results, and discussion. This is a very common and typical structure most research articles would follow. And you may wonder why in this particular shape.

Introduction (Why?)

Follow a very basic pattern, starting with something general, as you can see, from the first side of the first upside-down trapezoid, you can see that resembles more general and broader statements at the beginning, and gradually narrow down to something more specific, usually your research goal, research objective, or your very specific research questions. So, we will follow, the shape also resembles that pattern. So, broad, narrow, general, specific. That’s why we use different shapes to do that. And in terms of these four distinct sections, the introduction section is usually the most closely connected to the discussion section because usually in the discussion section, the author will go back to talk about and discuss some issues and challenges being brought up or mentioned in the introduction section.

Method (How?)

these two narrow sections in the middle, are the most connected.

Results (What?)

  • What do you find?
  • What is the answer to RQ?
  • Present your data/evidence (Tables and Figures)

Discussion & Conclusion (So What?)

  • What is the meaning/value of your results (in the field)?
  • What is the application/implication of your findings?
  • Address the issues pointed in Introduction

I, M, R, or D?

You may examine your model article now to see the dominating tense used in different sections of the paper. Is your observation consistent with the table? Why or Why not? Share your observations in the comments section below.

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Deconstructing Research Articles: How to Read and Write a Research Paper

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