General Essay Writing Tips
Essay writing will be a large part of your college life, and your writing skills will need to be up to par to ensure your grades do not languish. Few students come to college with either a natural writing talent or a wealth of experience in the same. Most, therefore, find essay writing to be among the most challenging aspects of college.
To save you the damage of having to learn from your own experience, here are some useful tips to help you write better essays.
1. Read a lot of Essays
To be a good writer, you must also be a prolific reader. Reading good essays written by experts in their fields with excellent writing skills will expose you to various techniques. You can use these in your own writing, mixing and matching as needed to formulate your own unique style.
An example of a good source of well-written essays is an essay writing service. Through an essay writing service review, you can read essays on a wide variety of subjects, which can help you write your own essays. Some services may even help you write your own essays, increasing your chances of getting that coveted A.
2. Make your Essay Easy to Read
There is no need to overcomplicate your essay with complex terminology, statistics, and information. While appropriate terminology, supporting evidence, and elaboration are all necessary parts of a good essay, moderation is key. You want to make your essay accessible to as many people as possible.
3. Watch out for formatting
Academic essays typically come with standardized formatting requirements: paper size, font size, line spacing, page numbers, margins, and so on. You should also consider the expected layout of the writing. A persuasive paper isn’t laid out quite the same way as a narrative essay or an advice piece, such as “motivating students during distance learning”. Be sure to follow the appropriate format and layout for the occasion.
Typos can ruin an otherwise great essay. The thing is, your command of the English language and grammar may be perfect. However, the presence of typos in your work indicates a lack of attention to detail on your part, which is not the best kind of signal to be sending your professor. Proofread your work and, if possible, have a professional editor go through it and correct both glaring and subtle mistakes.
5. Understand the Prompt of the Essay
Many students don’t take the time to really understand what an assignment is about. An academic essay will have a prompt, which should give you guidance on what is required of you. There will always be the temptation to let your inspiration dictate what to write, but this should always be framed in the context of what the prompt demands.
6. Have a Thesis Statement at the Beginning
A thesis statement introduces the reader to what the essay is all about. It reveals the essay’s main idea and primes the reader for what’s to come. Additionally, it also helps the writer stay on course, as they can keep referring back to the thesis statement to avoid veering off-topic.
7. Transition Your Sentences and Paragraphs Appropriately
A good essay features a smooth and coherent flow from idea to idea. Phrases like “to add to this”, “despite previous arguments to the contrary”, and “to put it briefly” help chain ideas together to make for a good read. Use proper transitions to keep your readers hooked.
8. Avoid Negative Language
I’m not talking about offensive words, though you should probably avoid those too. In this case, I’m talking about phrases with negation in them. For example, ‘inexpensive’ is a negative word, while ‘economical’ is more positive. They mean the same thing, but one prompts the reader to focus on the negative aspect while the other does the opposite. Ditto for saying ‘pleasant’, rather than saying ‘painless’.
9. Do Not Plagiarize
This is the cardinal rule of all writing. Make sure your writing is your own. Sure, you can incorporate information and ideas from various sources, but never copy word for word what someone else has written. Not only will this get you penalized on your essay, but it will also ruin your reputation and potentially get you expelled.
10. Provide Supporting Evidence
While examples from your own experience make an essay more personal and interesting, any significant claims you make will need to be supported by evidence. This may include literature, scientific work, and so on. Citations should be included so readers can go check out your sources and verify what you’re claiming for themselves. This makes your essay more convincing and adds credibility to your work.
Essay writing is a great exercise in polishing your thinking and writing skills alike. Following the tips above will make you a better essay writer, with work well worth the highest possible grade.