Are you done with your Master’s or PhD thesis? Do you want to convert it into an article now? Or are you starting a career as a journal writer? Whatever your situation is, turning a research paper into an article is a logical step. Every researcher needs to follow a procedure to complete this task. But the question is, how to start?

First, you should be clear about the difference between a thesis and a research paper. A thesis is a document of academic nature. It is more detailed in content. It contains an immense amount of knowledge. Whereas a research paper is short to get a scholarship and only highlights key points of your investigation. You can also say that a research paper is the briefing of actual writing. If you are going to convert your thesis into a research paper, below is the list of steps you need to go through. These steps include;

Identify the Right Journal:

The right journal helps your research flourish. It helps to put your work in front of a relevant and engaged audience. It can also help you to extend the impact factor of your paper. Unfortunately, it is painful to work for inexperienced authors. You need to find the best journal that suits your research. This process sometimes becomes very hectic due to several journals already present in the market. This overwhelming growth of journals leaves many researchers struggling to find the best journal for their writing.

After all, you need a good impact factor for your paper. And submitting to a wrong or irrelevant journal will affect the impact of your writing. It could even result in a series of rejections. These rejections can hold back your research and academic career. Hence, choosing the right journal can help you showcase your research to the world.

Shorten Your Thesis

As mentioned earlier, the thesis has plenty of data in it. It contains data from various sources, and huge explanations are in it. But you need to cut it short of creating a research paper out of it. The objective is that you need to develop your research in such a way that it attracts readers. It should also adhere to the guidelines of the publisher. Hence, the best way to attract readers is to have a clear title and polished abstract. The abstract should contain the necessary aspects of your investigation. There are some steps that you can follow to shorten your research paper. These steps are as follows;

  • Remove the needless hedge words
  • Use active voice instead of passive voice
  • Omit excessive adverbs
  • Manage scientific information wisely

Reformat the Introduction

In the thesis, you write a whole chapter on the introduction of your topic. But this is not the case when you are writing a research paper. You need to be short and precise. An abstract contains (150-250) words generally. An abstract should talk about the main objectives and findings of your research. It should encourage the reader to read your paper further.

According to a PhD dissertation help firm, you can use your thesis’s introduction and discussion parts to start the abstract.  One other way to write an abstract is to read other abstracts of multiple authors. This could help in structuring your abstract. A good abstract is meaningful and impactful, so you should make sure that every single word counts in your abstract. Don’t go into the details of every keyword. Each sentence should talk about the main points of your paper. While writing an abstract, you should avoid the use of unnecessary filler words and jargon.

Report Main Findings in Results:

Now, when you are done with your abstract part, next comes your research findings. You should also present the results of your study in the research paper. Reporting the main findings mean that you need to provide the results of major questions in your research. For example, you conducted laboratory research on some topics. Now, you need to present your data in your research article. But what data you should include in it? You can paste the graphs of the results in your paper. And in the end, explain those graphs in the discussion part.

The result section of your research paper should state your findings without bias. The results should be arranged logically too. More often, researchers make use of past tense to write the result section of their papers. You should also avoid providing data that is not helpful to answering the research question.

Discussion should be Concise

Now, you are in the discussion section of your research paper. You should adjust the discussion part of your paper based on the analyses and results you report. A good starting point for this section is, start with an interpretation of your results. One common mistake that many researchers make is repeating the results of the investigation in the discussion section. A strong Discussion section notes areas of consensus with and divergence from previous work.

Limit Number of References

Unlike your thesis, you need to limit your references in the research paper. As in a research paper, you don’t have the leverage to add sources you have learned. Include only to-the-point references and citations rather than providing an exhaustive list. Journals do sometimes limit the number of references you can provide in the research paper. For this reason, you should make sure;

  • To choose the most relevant and recent citations
  • The citations are formatted in a proper way

You can also use a reference manager system such as Mendeley to make this process easier for you.


Producing a research paper from the dissertation is a very hectic process. Sometimes, you will see that research papers roll out from your thesis in just a few writing sessions. But for other papers, you will be sweating as you try to get another piece of paper from your writing. Please don’t get mad at yourself; this is a fact; accept it and keep doing work.