How Many Quotes Should Be in a Research Paper

How Many Quotes Should Be in a Research Paper

Published by on 2021-06-11 15:57:29

Any student knows how important it is to pay attention to detail and fulfill all the professor's requirements. During the entire study period at a college or university, you will be faced with various papers. It is part of the overall concept for developing search, analysis, and implementation skills. But don't think that writing assignments is like taking a walk in the park. You will have to spend a lot of time including quotes in an essay or searching for reliable data. That is why it is so important to follow all the requirements.

Why Are Students Using Quotes?

Use soft words and hard arguments. Then your statements will be supported by facts. Students use reliable sources, direct speeches of scientists, or other information to support their thoughts. There are several reasons why this works:

  1. You can add value to your words.
  2. Your research will be more holistic.
  3. You can simplify the argumentation process.

In other words, such a student trick will help you significantly reduce your work time and simplify the process of providing evidence. As a rule, professors do not prohibit the use of quotations in a reasonable amount.

So, How Many Quotes Should Be in a Research Paper?

Unfortunately, there is no single answer to this question. Typically, the exact amount depends on your professor's requirements. But what about common sense? There is a general recommendation that is relevant for almost any type of assignment. Use one quote per section, such as methods section or outline for example, or paragraph. Remember that your goal is to clarify your point of view or justify the research topic. No need to turn your paper into the top 100 great quotes of all time. Otherwise, your paper will lose its value and meaning.

Be gentle and consistent. If you can explain a point yourself or refer to a reliable source, this will be the best option. There is no need to bring chaos into your thoughts and refer exclusively to other people's judgments. Your goal is to complete the assignment and gain valuable skills.

How Many Quotes Should Be in an Essay?

Typically, students should use 2-4 quotes per assignment. This amount looks natural and does not create an unnecessary heap of other people's thoughts. However, you should always ask your professor to don't start over and waste a lot of time. 

When you go in search of honey, you must expect to be stung by bees. Don't take quotes like a magic wand. When midnight strikes, you will see that your essay has turned into a pumpkin. Follow all requirements and common sense. How to add quotes in an essay in APA style? It's pretty straightforward. You need to indicate the original source and select one of the citation types:

  • paraphrasing;
  • short/ long quotations;
  • indirect quotes.

Indicate who, where, and when said or wrote about what you are going to quote. This is important as all of your data must be correct. It should be noted that the requirements are relevant for almost any paper.


Sometimes the uniqueness of your assignment takes precedence over the original source of your data. This is why you can rephrase a direct speech or statement that you feel is appropriate to explain certain aspects of your assignment. Of course, you will need to indicate who (where/when) said something. But the source text itself can be significantly modified.

Direct Quote

Sometimes paraphrasing doesn't help. In this case, you should place a direct quote to prove you are right. Try to choose exactly the source that will explain your goals as comprehensively as possible and confirm the integrity of your research. Then your paper will have value.

Useful Tips for Beginners

Prefer Quality Rather Than Quantity

Sometimes one good quote can prove that all of your research was worth it. Do not add dozens of other people's statements or research. Then your paper will resemble a peacock's tail. Only add the most important parts that can explain your logic and validate the research. Do not hurry. You should carefully consider your assignment. Try to be consistent, and you will succeed.

Avoid Long Block Quotes

Sometimes this kind of writing trick is really useful, especially if your research is multifaceted enough. But you should understand that you run the risk of making your research paper less informative. In addition, a huge amount of borrowed text will directly affect the originality of the assignment. Then you will have to spend a lot of time bringing your research into proper form.

Ask Someone for Help

Typically, you need a third-party assistant who can be unbiased. Let your friends or family take a look at your assignment from the outline to the results section. As a rule, such a solution will allow you to identify unnecessary parts of the text. Don't be shy. Just ask someone for a favor. You will be able to get an outside opinion and correct some of the text that looks strange. It’s simple. You can also order writing a research paper in our service, which is even more simple.

List the Page

Such advice is more of a requirement. If you link to the results of some research or book, you should specify the page. Then your professor can quickly find the source and evaluate how well you did the task. A simple piece of advice like this can make your life a lot easier. It is worth nothing that direct speech by someone during the interview is not a reason for creating a quote. You must find only reliable sources.