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Quality Research Paper Topics

So, you have been given the task to write a research paper, and yet, they didn’t give you a question or topic to respond to. It would be a strange thing if a high school or university student managed to get through their education without writing a research paper. Research papers are one of the most common tasks set to encourage students to become familiar with the types of literature in the academic world.

Whether you are talking about high school level students looking at secondary sources or university students who are focusing more on primary sources, the task remains similar. The student needs to sift through a lot of papers and come out the other side with an opinion. Your institution wants you to engage with the body of academic works. Research papers are a great way to assess how someone is comprehending and interacting with the writings within a field. Yet, for all the sorting through papers and reading you can see ahead, it is often a challenge just to start.


Table Of Contents


Field of Study but No Specific Topic

Usually, students are given paper topics or at least broad areas from where to start their research, but sometimes they are given nothing at all. In the case of the former, maybe the prompt is simply the subject you are studying, and perhaps you have already started to read textbooks and original sources assigned by the tutor.

  • Try asking yourself some questions?
  • Are you curious about anything?
  • Does something seem strange or counterintuitive? Or is there something you don’t agree with about the interpretations offered by the people who wrote the textbook. This doesn’t mean they are right or wrong, but following your curiosity to test the truth of something can be a great place to start.

Interesting Field but You Can’t Quite Formulate a Thesis

Start reading the papers which stand out to you and write short notes about anything that seems thought-provoking to remind you of your ideas and where to find the interesting parts of the text later. For some students, the thesis statement will start to form as they build on their research around the general topic.

Blank Paper: No Topic At All

On the other hand, perhaps you are doing a writing course, or you are studying English at the high school. If your task is merely to engage with the research paper genre, then your tutor is trying to set you up for success when you are given more specific tasks in the future. This is your opportunity to become more familiar with what is required from the writer of a research paper. Nonetheless, it can be disheartening when you are struggling to start the real work because you can’t get past that initial blank page. Here are some tips to fill it up.

When Starting from Scratch

  • Firstly, don’t attempt to please anybody by trying to think of a really smart and original concept. That applies too much pressure. To develop your writing you want to , even about simple things, in an engaging way.
    Your process, progression of logic, and the support you afford your argument or analysis will be carried by your writing style. This is what your grader will be interested in. Especially, if they haven’t given you a specific field of study to explore.

  • What are the things that have always been of interest to you? You are miles ahead if you can write about something you have some natural interest in. Your enthusiasm for a topic will keep you reading and asking the questions that further your research.
    Your interest in the topic will inevitably color your writing, and the paper will definitely stand out because of it. So, dream a little: brainstorm. Perhaps you have been curious about great battles of the past; the discoveries historians have made about Vikings, or the animal rights movement.

  • If you are still stuck, look outside yourself. Search topics on or through some in your campus library.
    Of course, we don’t look to Google or Wikipedia for objective truth but mine it for inspiration. If you disagree with something you read, . If you find yourself distracted going from article to article, follow your distraction and discover new interests.

  • If the curse of writer’s block has struck you and you just can’t think of anything, and nothing seems to spark your interest, well, you might need just to choose to become interested in . Because there is no better way to start than by starting. In this article, we will look at two options to achieve this.

  • ; maybe argue a little, in fun. Is there something that they believe that you can’t agree with? Could you research the idea to support your belief?
    Can you support the ideas you are hearing? Can you challenge them? It is also possible for you to take a , like the ‘Wage Gap’ and expand it into an opportunity for research. What has been written about it? When you find articles on the internet about it, look at the sources the writers refer to.
    Are they misrepresenting the source? If you read everything the various writers on the internet have read, would you come to the same conclusions? They are a part of the ongoing discussions that make up our academic flurry of discovery and analysis.

  • When all your options seem to be drying up, consider just On Wikipedia, you can press a link requesting a random article. Maybe press it a few times and see if something takes your interest.
    No one would suggest that you use Wikipedia as a source, but and you can always follow them up and use them as a place to start. Another option might be to on a chart and then roll a dice to decide on one. You never know what new interest might open up to you if you try something new.

Asking for Help

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Most tutors will be happy to help students to come up with ideas if you see them well before the due date. Perhaps there are even special facilities on your campus where students can ask for learning support.
At EssayPro we provide the high-quality custom academic services as well, You can always count on our team of pro writers!

Or, maybe an idea from this handful of suggestions might help.

10 Examples of Interesting Research Paper Topics

  • Many students feel liberated when they are not forced to wear uniforms. However, there may yet be liberation in wearing school colors.
  • When free speech becomes hate speech.
  • When the offense has taken becomes offense given.
  • The role of female characters in ancient literature can't be reduced to that of mere placeholders and status symbols for the stories of men to revolve around.
  • Many compare the similar efficacy results achieved by psychotherapeutic and pharmacological treatments as a mark of the success of both. However, it might be argued that it is a sign of their shared failure and that any comparable amount of authoritative attention would have a similar effect.
  • Studies of the environmental impact of internal combustion engines (ICEs) and the rapid increase in vehicle ownership throughout India and China show that there will be no real benefit from reducing emissions until ICEs are abolished altogether.
  • Never before have so many people studied at universities. Who benefits most from mass tertiary education?
  • There are a lot of studies which demonstrate the dangers of drugs, but has prohibition reduced or increased the availability and cultural relevance of illicit drugs?
  • Are agricultural subsidies helping rural communities, or do they just keep the biggest producers growing more than is required by markets while harming small or innovative farming businesses?
  • Looking at the ways writers have discussed the execution of Socrates across millennia, we can see how the circumstances of his death and what it says about human nature, have sounded an alarm through history.

Essay Writing Advice From Our Professional Team

TutorPro, from EssayPro

This article explains the process of finding a topic for your research paper. However, it doesn’t mention a common problem: narrowing that topic down. My advice for narrowing down your topic for a paper is to break it down by asking: who, what, when, where, why, and lastly how. After you’ve done that, see which question is most comprehensive. Then, narrow your topic down even more by asking questions like: “what was the challenge” “who was affected” “what was the outcome.” After you’ve asked these questions, your topic should be narrow enough to write about. Let me present you with an example. My topic is World War II. That’s too narrow! Whole novels have been written about World War II. Now, I can begin narrowing it down by asking “How” and “who was affected”. Now, my topic read something like: “How did WWII affect Sweden?” Now that’s a narrow topic! Best of luck with your research paper.

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Tired of writing about the same tired old topics like the ban on smoking in public places, the dangers of texting and driving, or gun control? Good. Your professors are tired of reading about these topics, too.

When you’re writing a research paper, you want to impress your professors with your writing skills, but you also want to offer new insights into a topic. You won’t likely be able to write anything new and enlightening about these tired old topics in only a few thousand words.

So how do you impress your professor if you think he or she has heard it all before?

To begin with, try a newer and more original topic.

Stumped for fresh ideas?

Don’t worry. This blog post contains 25 interesting research paper topics to get you started.

5 Interesting Research Paper Topics on Local Issues

True, it might take a little more effort to research local issues, but you’re up for the challenge, right?

Besides, learning and writing about the concerns of your community not only keeps you informed and involved, but also makes for a great research paper.

A great research paper means a great grade, so how can you go wrong?

To start researching local issues, head straight to local newspapers and online sources. They won’t provide all the details you’ll need to write an in-depth research essay, but they’re a good place to begin your research.

Researching local issues is also another chance for you to practice your interviewing skills. (After all, you’ll need them when you become the next host of The Tonight Show, right?) Seriously though, what better way to get the inside scoop than by interviewing the parties directly involved in the issue?

Not sure what types of local issues to research? Try one of these.

Interesting Research Paper Topic #1. Local Political Scandals

Has a local politician embezzled money, been charged with corruption, or been involved in a sizzling sex scandal?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #2: Local University Dramas

Are employees trying to form (or break) local unions? Are students fighting for lower tuition or book costs? Has the college president (or other administrator) been in the local news lately for any number of issues? Are police investigating a cheating or athletic scandal?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #3: Small Business Struggles and Triumphs

Is a small business a cornerstone in your community, and you want to research its impact on the community? Is a small business struggling due to a new big box store in the area?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #4: Local Government Issues

Should local government do more to help its citizens? Should more money be allocated to fix roads and bridges? Is the city providing adequate services such as clean water, trash pick up, safe neighborhoods, etc.?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #5. Local Public School Battles

Have students and/or teachers been involved in a sexting scandal?  Are the school board and/or parents battling over a new curriculum, athletic reform, or some other topic?

5 Interesting Research Paper Topics on Health and the Environment

You can research environmental or health topics ranging from small, local and regional topics to large, global issues.

For instance, you might research the best practices of sustainable cities to explain how your own city might work to emulate them. On the other hand, you might write from a global perspective and examine sustainable cities across the world.

If you’re writing about the environment or health, you might consider one of the following topics.

Interesting Research Paper Topic #6: BPA

Due to concerns with contaminants such a BPA, are canned foods safe to eat? Should stricter regulations be in place for labeling plastics containing BPA?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #7: Hunting Carnivores

Should the practice of killing carnivorous animals (such as wolves) to protect farms and livestock be stopped? Do ranchers have a right to protect their livestock by killing wolves? What are the results of allowing wolves to thrive?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #8: Sustainable Cities

Are sustainable cities and neighborhoods really possible? What are some examples of existing sustainable cities, and what are their best practices? What steps can you take to make your community sustainable?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #9: Plastic Bags

Should plastic bags (including plastic grocery bags) be banned in all 50 states? Should grocery stores charge a fee for each plastic bag used at the checkout? What are the effects of plastic bag bans in states that have already adopted the policy?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #10: Mountaintop Removal Mining

Should mountaintop removal mining be allowed to continue? Is mountaintop removal mining an effective coal mining method? What are the impacts of this type of mining on the communities that do it?

5 Interesting Research Paper Topics on Social Issues

Social topics impact us all. If you’re writing about social issues, you will generally be writing about how the topic affects larger groups of people, such as how poverty affects an entire generation.

However, keep in mind that social issues might also focus on smaller groups, such as a city or neighborhood.

If you’re feeling a little antisocial right now, spend a few minutes Googling some of these topics to see if they might work for your research paper.

Interesting Research Paper Topic #11: High School Dropouts

What social, personal, and political concerns lead to high school dropout rates? What are possible solutions to help decrease the dropout rate?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #12: Children and Poverty

How are children affected by poverty? What can governments do to help reduce child poverty? What can you do to help reduce child poverty?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #13: Medical Rights of Youths

Should 16 and 17 year olds have the right to refuse medical treatment? At what age do people have the right to determine whether or not they receive medical treatment?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #14: Overmedication of Children

Are children being overly medicated? If so, what is the driving force behind the rise in prescriptions?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #15: Free College Education

Should a college education be free for all U.S. citizens? How are free universities in Germany and other European countries benefiting these countries and students?

5 Interesting Research Paper Topics on Law Enforcement

Researching any issue about government or laws can become overwhelming because of the complexity of the issues and even because of the wording of some laws.

Spending time to review sufficient sources (and maybe getting a little help from a political science professor) will help you understand the topic.

Here are 5 topics to get you started.

Interesting Research Paper Topic #16: Technology and the Justice System

Is ShotSpotter technology reliable? Should the surveillance technology be admissible in court?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #17: Policing U.S. Law Enforcement

Should all police officers be required to wear body cameras? Will the use of body cameras reduce police brutality, and/or will it create a safer working environment for police?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #18: Juvenile Crime and Punishment

Should solitary confinement be banned for juveniles? Should juveniles be exempt from life sentences? Should juveniles be punished as adults for certain types of crimes?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #19: Incarceration Rates in the U.S.

What factors have led to increasing incarceration rates? How has this affected the U.S. economically and socially?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #20: License Plate Readers

Are license plate readers an invasion of privacy? Or, are these readers a necessary tool for law enforcement?

5 Interesting Research Paper Topics on Media, Social Media, and Advertising

As with anything involving media, social media, and advertising, watch out for biased and inaccurate information.

People like to share their opinions on such topics through forums, blogs, and their own websites. You know the type: the guy or gal who does nothing but blog all day long about the newest movie, the newest XBox game, or even the funniest Super Bowl commercial.

Though reading some anonymous blog that includes a glowing review of Grand Theft Auto and reading another that includes a scathing criticism of the sexism in the game might inspire some creative thought, you shouldn’t consider them credible research sources.

So remember, as you’re researching, make sure to look for credible resources. (Read How to Apply the CRAAP Test to Your Essay Sources.)

Not sure where to begin to look for ideas for media-related topics? You start with these.

Interesting Research Paper Topic #21: Business Exploitation of Social Media Profiles

Are teens (or adults) concerned that their use of social media is being exploited for profit by large companies? How do these new marketing strategies affect consumers and consumerism?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #22: Social Media and Self-Esteem

Can the use of social media, such as Facebook, lower teens’ self-esteem? Are there instances where these sites can help to raise teens’ self-esteem?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #23: E-Sports

Should e-sports be recognized as college sports? Can a sport that requires little physical ability really be considered a sport?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #24: Advertising in Schools

Should corporate advertising be allowed in public schools? Does corporate advertising provide much needed revenue to schools with limited federal funding?

Interesting Research Paper Topic #25: Advertising and Stereotypes

How does advertising perpetuate gender and/or racial stereotypes? Are ad campaigns that attempt to reverse the norms more or less effective?

Closing Tips on Writing an Interesting Research Paper

Remember, an interesting research paper starts with an interesting research paper topic. But choosing your topic is only the beginning.

Make sure you read How to Write a Research Paper: A Step-by-Step Guide to help you with refining and researching your topic and writing the final paper.

Don’t forget to choose a topic that interest you. If you’re bored while writing your paper, that will definitely show in your final product. If you’re excited about the topic, that will show too!

Not sure if you can work with any of the topics here?  For more ideas, read 50 Research Paper Topics to Help Jumpstart Your Writing.

Looking for additional help choosing and refining interesting research paper topics? Try this resource! Want some additional help finding and narrowing your topic? Read this!

After you’ve written your paper and feel it’s complete, have one of our Kibin editors review it to make sure it’s great!

Good luck!

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