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5 Simple steps to write a good research paper title

Jayashree Rajagopalan | Nov 18, 2014 | 49,947 views
5 Steps to write a good research paper title

The first thing journal editors and reviewers will see upon receiving your research paper is the title, and will immediately form a view on what they should expect in your research paper. Moreover, the tile of your research paper is the only aspect that will be freely available to readers through search engines or indexing databases. It is therefore imperative that you write a clear, persuasive title that leads readers to know more about your research.

The following example will help you understand how you can go about writing a good title for your research paper in 5 simple steps:

STEP 1 

Ask yourself these questions and make note of the answers:

  • What is my paper about?

My paper studies whether X therapy improves the cognitive function of patients suffering from dementia.

  • What techniques/ designs were used?

It was a randomized trial.

  • Who/what is studied?

I studied 40 cases from six cities in Japan.

  • What were the results?

There was an improvement in the cognitive function of patients.

STEP 2

Use your answers to list key words.

  • X therapy
  • Randomized trial
  • Dementia
  • 6 Japanese cities
  • 40 cases
  • Improved cognitive function

STEP 3

Create a sentence that includes the key words you listed.

This study is a randomized trial that investigates whether X therapy improved cognitive function in 40 dementia patients from 6 cities in Japan; it reports improved cognitive function.

(Current length: 28 words)

STEP 4

Delete all unnecessary/ repetitive words and link the remaining. 

This study is a randomized trial that investigates whether X therapy improved cognitive function in 40 dementia patients from 6 cities in Japan; it reports improved cognitive function Randomized trial of X therapy for improving cognitive function in 40 dementia patients from 6 cities in Japan

(Length of revised title: 18 words)

STEP 5

Delete non-essential information and reword the title. 

Randomized trial of X therapy for improving cognitive function in 40 dementia patients from 6 cities in Japan reports improved cognitive function

Randomized trial of X therapy for improving cognitive function in 40 dementia patients 

(Length of finalized title: 13 words) 

OR

Include a subtitle

X therapy improves cognitive function in 40 dementia patients: A randomized trial 

(Title length: 12 words)

 

Following the steps outlined above will help you arrive at an effective title for your research paper.

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