Research Paper Topics

By definition a research paper requires the writer to learn a great deal about their subject, so it is always a good practice to select a topic that truly interests you before you begin gathering sources.  If you are interested in your topic, learning about it will be more pleasurable and you will write with greater passion, so choose your topic thoughtfully.  Use the following list of 101 research paper topics as a starting point for your paper.  As you begin learning and writing about your topic, you should revise or amend your research question or thesis statement to better match the information that you are interpreting, analyzing, and expressing.  Let your interest guide you.  If you’re not having fun learning and writing about your topic, perhaps you should pick one that interests you more.

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101 Research Paper Topics


  1. Why do we sleep?
  2. How do GPS systems work?
  3. Who was the first person to reach the North Pole?
  4. Did anybody ever escape Alcatraz?
  5. What was life like for a gladiator?
  6. What are the effects of prolonged steroid use on the human body?
  7. What happened during the Salem witch trials?
  8. Are there any effective means of repelling insects?
  9. How did trains and railroads change life in America?
  10. What may have occurred during the Roswell UFO incident of 1947?
  11. How is bulletproof clothing made?
  12. What Olympic events were practiced in ancient Greece?
  13. What are the major theories explaining the disappearance of the dinosaurs?
  14. How was the skateboard invented and how has it changed over the years?
  15. How did the long bow contribute to English military dominance?
  16. What caused the stock market crash of 2008?
  17. How did Cleopatra come to power in Egypt what did she do during her reign?
  18. How has airport security intensified since September 11th, 2001?
  19. What is life like inside of a beehive?
  20. Where did hip hop originate and who were its founders?
  21. What makes the platypus a unique and interesting mammal?
  22. How does tobacco use affect the human body?
  23. How do computer viruses spread and in what ways do they affect computers?
  24. What is daily life like for a Buddhist monk?
  25. What are the origins of the conflict in Darfur?
  26. How did gunpowder change warfare?
  27. In what ways do Wal-Mart stores affect local economies?
  28. How were cats and dogs domesticated and for what purposes?
  29. What do historians know about ninjas?
  30. How has the music industry been affected by the internet and digital downloading?
  31. What were the circumstances surrounding the death of Osama Bin Laden?
  32. What was the women’s suffrage movement and how did it change America?
  33. What efforts are being taken to protect endangered wildlife?
  34. How much does the war on drugs cost Americans each year?
  35. How is text messaging affecting teen literacy?
  36. Are humans still evolving?
  37. What technologies are available to home owners to help them conserve energy?
  38. How have oil spills affected the planet and what steps are being taken to prevent them?
  39. What was the Magna Carta and how did it change England?
  40. What is the curse of the pharaohs?
  41. Why was Socrates executed?
  42. What nonlethal weapons are used by police to subdue rioters?
  43. How does the prison population in America compare to other nations?
  44. How did ancient sailors navigate the globe?
  45. Can gamblers ever acquire a statistical advantage over the house in casino games?
  46. What is alchemy and how has it been attempted?
  47. How are black holes formed?
  48. How was the assassination of Abraham Lincoln plotted and executed?
  49. Do the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks?
  50. How do submarines work?
  51. Do lie detector tests accurately determine truthful statements?
  52. How did Cold War tension affect the US and the world?
  53. What happened to the lost settlers at Roanoke?
  54. How does a hybrid car save energy?
  55. What ingredients can be found inside of a hotdog?
  56. How did Julius Caesar affect Rome?
  57. What are some common sleep disorders and how are they treated?
  58. How did the Freedom Riders change society?
  59. How is internet censorship used in China and around the world?
  60. What was the code of the Bushido and how did it affect samurai warriors?
  61. What are the risks of artificial tanning or prolonged exposure to the sun?
  62. What programs are available to help war veterans get back into society?
  63. What steps are involved in creating a movie or television show?
  64. How have the film and music industries dealt with piracy?
  65. How did Joan of Arc change history?
  66. What responsibilities do secret service agents have?
  67. How does a shark hunt?
  68. What dangers and hardships did Lewis and Clark face when exploring the Midwest?
  69. Has the Patriot Act prevented or stopped terrorist acts in America?
  70. Do states that allow citizens to carry guns have higher or lower crime rates?
  71. How are the Great Depression and the Great Recession similar and different?
  72. What are the dangers of scuba diving and underwater exploration?
  73. How does the human brain store and retrieve memories?
  74. What was the Manhattan Project and what impact did it have on the world?
  75. How does stealth technology shield aircraft from radar?
  76. What causes tornadoes?
  77. Why did Martin Luther protest against the Catholic Church?
  78. How does a search engine work?
  79. What are the current capabilities and future goals of genetic engineers?
  80. How did the Roman Empire fall?
  81. What obstacles faced scientists in breaking the sound barrier?
  82. How did the black plague affect Europe?
  83. What happened to Amelia Earhart?
  84. What are the dangers and hazards of using nuclear power?
  85. How did Genghis Khan conquer Persia?
  86. What architectural marvels were found in Tenochtitlan, capital of the Aztec Empire?
  87. From where does spam email come and can we stop it?
  88. How does night vision work?
  89. How did journalists influence US war efforts in Vietnam?
  90. What are the benefits and hazards of medical marijuana?
  91. What causes desert mirages and how do they affect wanderers?
  92. What was the cultural significance of the first moon landing?
  93. What are sinkholes and how are they formed?
  94. Have any psychics ever solved crimes or prevented them from occurring?
  95. Who is Vlad the Impaler and what is his connection to Count Dracula?
  96. What are the risks of climate change and global warming?
  97. What treatments are available to people infected with HIV and are they effective?
  98. Who was a greater inventor, Leonardo di Vinci or Thomas Edison?
  99. How are the Chinese and American economies similar and different?
  100. Why was communism unsuccessful in so many countries?
  101. In what ways do video games affect children and teenagers?

I hope this list will help you choose a topic for your research paper.  Remember that these ideas should be used as a starting point; you will have to make these topics your own during the writing and research process.  Don’t be afraid to alter and revise your thesis or research question to better match your interests or to align with your research.  Would you like to suggest a research paper topic?  Leave it in the comments below.

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  1. Makayla

     /  September 10, 2015

    I am a freshman trying to do 40 hours of english work outside of english class for honors which gives me college credit. Which of these topics do you think would most likely take the longest to write? I was hoping to be able to write a seven to ten page essay, but I can’t seem to find the right topic.

    • You cannot write longer papers because of your topic. You write longer papers because of your interest in your topic. It is not uncommon for graduate students to write 7-10 page papers about a few paragraphs. Find a topic that interests you. Learn about it. Learn as much as you can. Then you will be ready to write about it. You can’t really skip those steps if you want to generate a quality piece of writing.

  2. Lily John

     /  September 9, 2015

    I would like to write
    about research of problems in the field of studying at university..Relating to the language skills or some other ones that studebts faces in the course of studying..
    Any suggestion

  3. Anne

     /  September 7, 2015

    Please, I would like to write a report of my research project on Travel and Tourism? I will appreciate. if you could guide me with all to write on it? Moreover, would you rather think I research on travel on its own and viseversa? Whatever, please, let me have some guidance in regards to any?


    • I would find a topic that interested me about that industry. Then I would learn more about it. I’m sorry that I can’t help you more than that.

  4. Kandy

     /  September 4, 2015

    I need to choose a topic derived from a book with the following words in the title, ” the power of or “the art of” for a research paper. Do you have any book recommendations that come with a lot of solid science? Almost everything i find is about meditation.

    Thanks in advance.

  5. Christina A.

     /  August 31, 2015

    I need to find a topic to write a research paper. Any suggestions?

  6. sandeep kumar

     /  August 24, 2015

    Hello, i want to research topic in field of mechanical engineering which is related to thermal power plant.

  7. M Rashid

     /  August 13, 2015

    I want some more topic related to computer science, information technology and latest technology in this era.

  8. Juliet

     /  August 12, 2015

    Hi,please can you help me on this research question. (Trace the relationship between research questions and instrumentation on survey research) and (why do we study significant in project writing )

  9. norabelle casumpang

     /  August 11, 2015

    what is the best topic for a teenager in which universal to everyone?

  10. Misty

     /  August 9, 2015

    I am an English major. I am working on an annotated bibliography on a topic within my field of study. I actually liked your suggestion on school funding and have added it to my list of possibilities. Actually it was the first on the list since my mind went completely blank, but it got me started and now I have several more that I actually though of myself. So, thank you for your help and have a great day!

  11. haan-5

     /  August 2, 2015

    Hi thanks for the questions i used Do states that allow citizens to carry guns have higher or lower crime rate? Did you mean open-carry because, I was thinking legally you are allowed to have a gun in each state, I was just confused because I need to do this for AP English , I chose the book citizen protectors by Jennifer Carlson i would like to ask help do you think its a good book for this question? And do you think i should specify open carry or concealed carry in the question and if I do use that question would the book still be relatable for the book?

  12. Sal V

     /  July 31, 2015

    I need help generating a topic for my research paper. I want my topic to be something about mental illnesses or schizophrenia.. Thank You

  13. Enos Wong

     /  July 30, 2015

    I just want to thank you for all these topics because they have helped find topics for research topics that my mom has me do over the summer so I can improve on writing. I have recently done the gladiator and samurai bushido code ones.

  14. Ng

     /  July 30, 2015

    I’m going to pursue my study in master of education (TESL =teaching English as the second language).what topic should focus on.don’t have ideas till now..pls suggest..tq

  15. M a wahla

     /  July 28, 2015

    What are the gender disparities in education sector to limitise them. Can it be a reaserch statement. Kindly correct if anysuggestion u think.

  16. Raymond Briongos

     /  July 28, 2015


    Good Day!
    i am a 4th year student taking ABENGLISH, and i find it hard to look for a topic for my research. Can you suggest anything that will talk about Education, specifically about English Language learning that will consume 3 months only.
    your response will be very much appreciated! thanks a lot in advance!

  17. Sierra Conchinha

     /  July 22, 2015

    I have a research paper, and we have to choose a turning point in history to write about, Any suggestions?

    • Yeah, I’d argue that the biggest turning point in history was either the initiation of the Columbian Exchange in 1492 or when Martin Luther rebelled against the Catholic Church. History is full of major turning points, however.

  18. Jade

     /  July 20, 2015

    I am twelve years old and i have just broke up for summer, my mother and I have considered it a educational theory to see whether or not doing an assessment on various different and unique questions will help me in the future. For example usually when i go back to school after the long period of time away from it my brain tends to lack in knowledge so if I were to continuously work my brain throughout the holidays I might find the struggle some start of year essays a slight bit easier. Anyway I really appreciate these questions and will find a fantastic purpose towards then, thank you x

  19. virgilio

     /  July 19, 2015

    hi, i want to make a research title about using PC and smartphones…. can you help me?

  20. karolina

     /  July 18, 2015

    I reseach lots of things. Blechley Park is very interesting

  21. Sindani Mhlanga

     /  July 17, 2015

    What doctoral degree research topic would you suggest for a marketing / entrepreneurial development interest of study. i am in Zimbabwe, Southern Africa.

  22. Hazel Mhlolo

     /  July 17, 2015

    hie Mr Morton,
    i need to write a research proposal on gender or labour for a global scholarship award at a Law Faculty in a South african university. Can u help???

  23. kanishka sethi

     /  July 8, 2015

    can you please suggest me some research topic in the field of marketing in indian context..

  24. jeñnufer ann c rait

     /  July 8, 2015

    Mrm Morton
    i am last year of my masteral degree. could you help me decìde on the topic which is related to education
    thànks a lot

    • Hi. I am interested in disparities in local school funding. Why does one locality have deep pockets while others struggle to acquire basic resources?

  25. Neo

     /  July 2, 2015

    Good Morning,
    Thank you for this post…

    I’m really interested in writing about cyber crimes and their affects..

  26. Jennifer Santos

     /  July 1, 2015

    Hello! I need some help. I need to have a
    research topic about the space that is interesting and useful. Could you please help me? Thanks!

  27. Luula

     /  June 30, 2015

    Plz suggest me a topics headline about invironmental health for research proposal

    • Sure, climate change is a hot issue. How about that? What is being done to prevent climate change? Should more be done? What should be done?

  28. Jane D

     /  June 28, 2015

    hello, i am trying to create a research topic question on the gender wage gap but am having a hard time. would you be able to help?

  29. Michael B.

     /  June 25, 2015

    I am currently taking an English Course for college and I am stuck between doing a topic on solar energy, anxiety disorder, or gay rights. The problem is that they have to be narrow and I’m having trouble narrowing any of them to give me a nice 8 page paper. Any suggestions?

    • None of those topics are narrow. In fact, they are overly broad for an 8 page paper. Choose one and begin learning more about it. Once you have read 5 or so sources, you should have some interesting things to say about the subject.

  30. Jay Lai

     /  June 23, 2015

    I am doing Research Project in my senior year and I need a topic. I been having trouble generating a question. Can you please help me generate a question along the lines of…’How to design and produce a modernized costume with cultural elements’.?
    -Jay Lai

  31. zena flores

     /  June 13, 2015

    Can you suggest a topic that is related to Language Research?

  32. brighteyed

     /  June 11, 2015

    Hi! I am interested in doing my research project on either social entrepreneurship or corporate social responsibility. Could you help me narrow these down to a research question?

  33. Ashley R

     /  June 8, 2015

    I want to write a research paper about reading comprehension. However, I know this is too broad and I want to narrow it down somewhat based on the following learning goals I created:

    Identify scientifically based reading comprehension instructional methods and strategies that can be applied in the classroom.

    Identify scientifically based instructional methods, strategies, or resources that will facilitate growth in diverse and struggling learners.

  34. Atul howal

     /  June 5, 2015

    Please Suggest me new topic for research paper in IT Field

    • Ok, how about addressing the dwindling supply of IPv4 addresses. How are companies dealing with this? Is IPv6 ready? What is preventing people from embracing IPv6?

  35. Anthony Armstrong

     /  May 30, 2015

    Thanks a lot for this website! Right now I have a research project for school and couldn’t think of any topics until now.

  36. savindi

     /  May 28, 2015

    Actually this was very hepful

  37. salman

     /  May 27, 2015

    i want to write a report on Reading habit, preference of reading in girls and boys, perception of reading as girl things not a masculine activity.
    but a problem is i never written any report of-sort so really confused.
    any idea about research statement ?
    problem statement with objects?
    thank you

    • Your topic seems interesting but perhaps to narrow. When writing a research paper, you kind of have to build from the available research. Try to find information about reading and gender, read all that you can, and build your statement from there. That way you will build your sources into your writing. It is surely the best way for you to go.

  38. kobutumwa Edith

     /  May 20, 2015

    i wuold like to know the influence text messaging on teen literacy

  39. Sandra

     /  May 6, 2015

    Topic: Why was communism unsuccessful in so many countries?
    This was every helpful, because I got to do a research paper on what interest me. Thank you!

  40. melliny

     /  April 28, 2015

    what about music as a medical treatment

  41. Alma Piña

     /  April 19, 2015

    Topic to add: How do the Koch brothers affect society? (I.e. economy, politics, education etc.)

  42. Jackson Whitehead

     /  April 17, 2015

    is there something about tv shows

    • Maybe you could do something specific to a particular show, like social commentary in the Simpsons.

      • Benson Karemera

         /  October 20, 2015

        I am really impressed by your contributions. I am a student of project management and I am soon starting my research thesis, with what topic can you advise me to do with in the field of management?

        • I have very little knowledge in this area, but I am particularly interested in conflict resolution. Perhaps research various strategies and implementations?

  43. Emily Kaiser

     /  April 15, 2015

    This was very helpful because I got my whole class to pick a number and they would have to do a report about that question. Thank you internet for helping my class do something besides playing games all day.

  44. Cleopatra

     /  April 14, 2015

    I was wondering if could tell which topics is better? I have to do a 7 page research paper with 5 sources. I was thinking about infidelity in a marriage, do benefit of vaccination outweigh the risk, or where did hip hop originate from.. Help

    • Those are all pretty good topics. I suggest that you start researching each topic and see what is accessible. It depends a lot on which sources your teacher accepts. If you have to use dead-tree sources (books), you’ll want to see what your library offers before you commit to any of these topics. As you begin finding sources, take a moment to read each text. Make sure that it is something that you can understand. If you can’t get meaning from the text, than selecting it as a source is meaningless. Best wishes!

  45. Jithu J. Nair

     /  April 11, 2015

    My friend and I, we found this website really helpful thank you for taking the time out to help us folks in need !!

  46. Terri

     /  April 10, 2015

    How do you start the writing of a research paper?
    I have all the information, but as I am writing it down I feel I am starting in the middle because I am unsure how to begin.

    • I usually start with an attention-catching technique like a quote, related anecdote, or shocking statistic or statement.

  47. vasudha

     /  April 9, 2015

    my topic
    “how the mind will do multi tasking:?

  48. Rachel S.

     /  April 7, 2015

    Just wanted to let you know that I am a high school English teacher, and this list helped me come up with some research topics to suggest to my own students. I linked directly to your site, of course.

    Thank you for publishing your ideas!

  49. Amanda Marie

     /  April 6, 2015

    Hello! I’m wondering about a topic to write about for a research topic… maybe something about GMO’s or along that line? I’m not very good with writing longer essays, would be a great help if someone could help! 🙂

    • The key is to learn enough about your topic that you have something to say. There are many ways to learn about your topic. This is the research process. The sooner that you begin this process, the more you can learn.


     /  April 6, 2015

    Would you please tell me how is
    “student politics ” as a topics for recharge paper


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