Why Read Research Papers?

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Reasons to read research papers

  • The primary reason academic papers are written is for the author(s) to communicate their ideas, theories, and discoveries with others, by:
    - Reporting new results
    - Relating the results to previous knowledge in the field
  • The reasons we read papers include:
    - To understand the context of a specific research area
    - To help formulate our own research problems
    - To see good and bad writing as well as good and bad research
    - To learn the techniques used in a particular research area
  • What should we focus on when we read a research paper?
    - Identify the problem being addressed
    - Identify the results of the research
    - Identify the importance of the results
    - Identify which parts of the paper are worth studying in detail
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last updated: August 29, 2005 Marti Lindsey mlindsey@u.arizona.edu