If you do not consider yourself as a wordsmith, chances are, you dread essays and academic papers as much as you dread seating besides your obnoxious classmate. These papers are staple requirements in the academe nonetheless. Whether you like it or not, you will have to face your fears in writing.
Remember that most of our fears stem from threading an unfamiliar territory. Nonetheless, these 5 tips to writing high quality essays and academic papers are surefire way to help you start and finish your writing assignment.
1. Organize and plan your time
Proper scheduling is the key to accomplishing all tasks. If you are given an assignment, start as soon as possible. Procrastination is probably one of the biggest reasons why students get poor grades.
Cramming is stressful. It results in disorganized thoughts and ideas and misguided line of thinking. In addition, when we cram, we often finish a task just for the sake of making it on time. We compromise quality for mediocrity.
To organize and plan your time, make sure to maintain a to-do list or a daily planner. You can use a notebook or your smartphone to list all of your academic and non-academic activities and responsibilities so you’ll know when is the best time to start writing your paper.
2. Collect your thoughts
Sometimes, we are guilty of rushing things. Starting writing your paper as soon as possible doesn’t mean churning and spewing out words immediately. Remember that proper timing is the key to perfecting a task.
The only way to produce high quality writing is to collect your thoughts. You can jot down random ideas, make an outline, revise an outline, and/or draw an idea map. Collecting your thoughts opens rooms for improvements because it allows you to see the bigger picture and even small details of your task.
3. Read, read, and read
A good writer is also a good reader. Not only will you learn something new from reading, you could expand your vocabulary and improve your sentence construction as you learn different writing styles and tones while reading.
Reading is also part of prewriting, especially when you are in the process of collecting reference materials or researching topics to substantiate your written discussion.
Remember, though, to read works from reputable authors and publishers. Just as a rotten meat spoils an entire meal, bad reading material spoils your writing.
4. Leave time to revise
It’s really hard to come up with a perfectly written piece in just one sitting. More often than not, when we write lengthy pieces, we commit oversights including misspellings, grammatical lapses, formatting errors, and thought incoherencies among others.
Revising enables us to correct these mistakes and thus, perfect our piece. However, this process should come after writing. Some of us make the dreaded mistake of switching between writing and revising. This is ineffective because we need to rest or eyes and heads before we can pinpoint oversights with precision.
5. Remember simplicity
Write how you talk. Use simple words. Keep sentences short.
While seasoned writers often demonstrate their hard-hitting writing prowess through profound discussions, extensive vocabulary, and complicated sentence construction, beginners and emerging writers should start off small.
BONUS: Seek help
Consult your peers or instructors. You can also talk to writing tutors or individuals providing online essay help. By seeking help, you are able to overcome your limits and perhaps, lapses in your own judgment.