Writing a research report requires focusing the topic into a specific area of study. According to Chilin Shih from the University of Illinois, phonetics is a term used to describe the study of sounds in human speech. When looking for a research paper topic relating to phonetics, the topic must relate to sounds in some manner.

Comparison Topic

Since phonetics is the study of speech and sounds, one option for research is comparisons between countries. There are a few ways students can break down their research when doing a comparison topic: compare countries that speak the same language, such as Britain and America, compare different language sounds or compare dialects from the same country and the way sounds differ or are the same.

Singing Vs. Speech

Students can research singing and the sounds associated with singing and the differences and similarities between singing and speech. For example, during singing the voice might have more enunciation in sounds while in speech the words might have less enunciation. Students might research how the vocal folds work in singing and in speech and compare the two.

Influences on Speech

Writing a paper on the items that influence speech and sounds is another option for a paper. For example, write a paper based on the question "what makes people talk faster?" or "what makes people talk slower?" or on factors that influence accents, dialects or expressiveness in speech.

Child Speech Research

Children have an amazing capacity to learn speech when they are young. Students might research speech as it relates to children and the development of speech through childhood. Topics might cover development of speech, growth of speaking or non-speech communication sounds.