How to Write a History Research Paper

Updated: June 14, 2023

Need help to complete your history research paper? History papers entail essential dates and events from the old and modern epochs. Students might find it overwhelming to write about history since the subject matter encompasses past human affairs records. Since it is an immense and diverse subject, historians often rely on fragments of recorded information to develop insightful analysis.

What Is a History Research Paper

It is an academic assignment that comprises factual evidence from various primary sources. The paper follows a historical question to develop arguments while linking the topic to other credible scholars. With data from other historians, you will extract secondary sources that will help you to build your thesis.

Unlike other subjects, the information on this paper must align with the period the research addresses. The thesis should report significant claims from other scholars and present arguments with valid evidence. Hence, your assignment may support or contest the claims while giving a specific standpoint about the conversations.

Since this paper contains primary and secondary research sources, you also need to include your personal understanding of the topic. If you want to make an authentic argument, ensure you write your thesis from a historical question, conduct in-depth analysis and evaluate other unanswered questions about your topic. Your academic paper should provide a refreshing insight with a new way to solve a particular historical issue.

How to Start a History Research Paper

Most students don’t know how to start writing a historical document, resulting in a poorly-written essay. The first essential step is to study the topic question extensively. Whether it is a cause and effect paper about a specific event or a descriptive essay, you must evaluate the topic and know the expectations.

Therefore, ensure you read the topic question carefully several times and extract the main keywords.

What is the subject matter? Are you analyzing a particular event or person? Is there a specific timeframe for the occurrence? Also, you need to identify the problem the paper requires you to carry out an in-depth analysis.

Start your history document with a clear introduction that reveals your subject matter immediately. Do not write irrelevant phrases that might bore the reader. It allows you to write your thesis statement without complicating the theme.

Proceed to write a clear and concise thesis statement about the subject matter. A persuasive thesis must answer the research question. For instance, how did a particular event occur and why. Make your readers understand the purpose of your thesis.

How to Structure a History Research Paper

Each thesis must follow a particular structure, and a history assignment is not an exception. It has an outline like any standard essay, with an introduction, body, and conclusion. However, you must always begin by planning your paper immediately after you receive it. As mentioned above, take adequate time to study the topic question first.

Brainstorm all possible scenarios and note down the major points and ideas. What do you think about the answers to the topic question? Are there any other problems, events, or people linked to your subject matter? Find out if there are other similar topics or occurrences that you need to investigate. Also, don’t forget to include significant historians related to the thesis and analysis period.

When you have all the information, you can now use the outline to develop your thesis. Having a proper structure allows you to know what to write in each section.

Clear Chronology

Your history essay must entail a consistent sequence of events that allow readers to follow your arguments. It must have proper and logical information flow that transitions from one point to the next without confusion.

Critical Thinking

Historians rely on facts rather than feelings; thus, you need to be a critical thinker to develop insightful arguments. Proving your perspective requires valid evidence and analysis and not emotions.

Proper Formatting

While research essays may have different format styles, students must also learn how to write a history research paper in APA format. Understand the academic formatting style your tutor requires before you finish off your thesis.

Accurate Quotes

Make sure you include proper quotations from credible researchers to authenticate your assignment. Don’t pile up sources because each quote must be relevant to the argument.

How to End a History Research Paper

It would be best if you had a strong conclusion to end your thesis effectively. The audience must understand the document’s significance and the purpose of your analysis. Therefore, ensure you paraphrase your thesis statement to refresh the reader’s mind about your subject matter. Indicate any historical implications about your study briefly by restating the major points from the body.

Leaving a lasting impression on your audience is essential since they will know your level of understanding and the importance of the study. However, do not add any new information since you will confuse the readers and complicate the paper.

History Research Paper Outline

An outline helps you in thought organization and articulation in a logical order. It would be best if you incorporated an outline in all research documents to avoid unclear statements. In a thesis, the first step is to have a thesis statement at the beginning of the introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

Below is an overview of the outline:


  • Thesis statement
  • Brief introduction
  • Background information
  • Hook phrases

Body Paragraphs

  • Factual information
  • Real evidence – quotes or references
  • Summarize each paragraph.


  • Summary of major points
  • Rewrite thesis statement
  • Connect thoughts with arguments.
  • Significance of analysis

History Research Paper Introduction

This section entails a thesis statement, a brief introduction, and background information about the topic. Ensure it has a description relating to the topic question, for instance, the event’s period or historical problem and the prominent people involved. It is vital to make your readers understand the topic’s relevance to help them follow the arguments later in the essay.

Don’t forget to make your introduction captivating to grab the interest of the audience.

History Research Paper Body

The body holds the effectiveness of any research paper since it contains all the arguments and supporting evidence. In this section, you need to describe, analyze, and integrate relevant data from the sources.

The body entails factual information relating to the main topic while presenting real evidence from primary and secondary information resources.

You must have proper sentence structures that connect each argument to the next. Also, ensure that you carry out thorough research to develop an accurate and compelling thesis. Historians rely on accuracy to build concrete evidence about a particular person or occurrence.

History Research Paper Conclusion

Finally, write a definite conclusion that leaves a lasting impact on your audience.

Summarize your significant points in the body while explaining the significance of the study. Is there a lesson from the historical implication? Paraphrase the thesis statement and include your perspective regarding the topic question.  Your paragraph must connect with the introduction to make your thesis effective. Ultimately, this section should summarize, present, explain and satisfy the audience about the historical question

History Research Paper Help

Writing a history research paper can be a demanding endeavor, necessitating a deep understanding of historical events, contexts, and interpretations. This type of paper requires extensive research, careful analysis, and the ability to construct compelling arguments based on historical evidence, which can be time-consuming and challenging. Given the complexity and depth of knowledge required, students may find it beneficial to seek professional assistance.

By ordering a paper from professional writers who specialize in history, students can ensure their research paper is comprehensive, well-argued, and meets the highest academic standards.

George Lynch
George Lynch
Literature, Psychology, Religion
Experience: 3+ years
I’ve been enjoying academic writing since day one in college. Today, having a full-time job, I’m still looking forward to writing essays and research papers online for others.
Read more
You Might Also Like:
Back to blog
Show more