Conducting a Decent Conclusion for Your Research Paper

Understanding Why the Concluding Paragraph is a Challenge

The concluding paragraph is often a challenge for students. Do you know why? As a Professor of English for many years, I believe that the challenge of the concluding paragraph arises because students have invested so much time into the research paper itself, that they do not want all their work to be in vain. They want a good conclusion—one that ends their essay on an impressive note, right? And I’m going to tell you some tricks for achieving a great concluding paragraph.

Also, students often simply don’t know what is expected of them in a closing paragraph.

The Purpose of the Concluding Paragraph

The purpose of the concluding paragraph is to bring your essay to a close which accomplishes two things:

  1. It gives the essay finality.
  2. It makes your reader think more about your topic.

First, Giving Your Essay Finality

What you want to do is bring all the matters you have been discussing into a decent close. If you have addressed all the issues of this topic within the body of your essay, you can reflect back upon your discussing with a handy glance back worded as “As we can see from this discussion, it is becoming imperative that we do something about global warming now.” Or, you could say something like, “In the light of this discussion, it should be obvious that what should be primary on our minds is . . . ”

Second, Make Your Readers Think –Bring it Into the Present Moment

A great trick to work for the very last sentence or sentences of your concluding paragraph is to bring your topic in to the very present moment of your discussion. For example, if I were discussing global warming and I had been discussing all the elements of what we can do now to help fight global warming—or if I were simply writing an essay presenting all the evidence that global warming is an actual problem, a good move to make might be to bring the topic of global warming into this month, this week, or this day—search the internet for endangered animals, animals that are becoming extinct because of global warming, and etcetera.

I would move, in this instance, to a discussion of how the polar bears are now in danger of becoming extinct if we don’t act now, for example.

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