As part of many career exploration classes, high school students and beginning college students are often required to write a career research paper. Career research paper assignments might require that the student research and write about his or her ideal career or they might require the student to present a paper on a career which is completely different from any career he or she might have previously considered. Some instructors even require students to pick a career from a basket or bowl full of careers that the instructor has written on paper slips so that students have no choice but to present a career research paper on a career that they might be completely unfamiliar with.
When writing career research papers, it is important to explore not only the basics of the career, but to also consider interviewing someone who holds a position within the career itself. This helps give a comprehensive picture of the career topic. Career research papers are set up similar to any other academic paper, but generally contain somewhat different information.
A career research paper needs an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. In the introduction, the student should introduce the career topic and perhaps discuss why the topic was selected. If the career topic was selected by the student, the introduction might include why the student desires to work in that career.
The body of the paper should contain one or two paragraphs of information on the education needed to enter the career, the income range of people who work in the career, and other basic demographic information. The paper should have at least one paragraph that reflects the experiences of an individual who works in the career being explored. At least one paragraph can be devoted to why the career appeals to the student. All together, a one-page paper should have three body paragraphs.
The conclusion of the paper should summarize one highlight from each of the paragraphs and should provide a solid ending to the paper. Career research papers are a great tool to help students who do not yet have a career goal in mind begin thinking about what educational path they want to take. Career research papers can also help students explore careers for which they might be suited, but which they have not yet considered. Finally, career research papers are a tool which can help a student fine tune his or her career selection into a particular field.