Essay Writing: 5 Practical Tips for Students
For most students, every essay brings its own challenges thus making it more difficult than the previous one.
12:44 15 January 2020
Writing essays regularly has one problem. It’s easier to use the same method over and over again than trying out a new method. In fact, a student is not likely to change his or her writing methods when the professor leaves behind good feedback.
In everything you do, no matter how good you are, there will always be room for improvement. For you to perform better, you have to change your writing methods. Today, we are going to discuss the top tips for students to improve their essay writing skills. Let’s face it. Writing an essay is not that easy. Let’s get started!
1. Read other essays
Similar to reading other people’s books, reading other people’s essay helps you develop and improve your essay writing style. You have to read several different essays including those of your colleagues and other experts, you can research paper writing service for those goals. Reading essays on different subjects and disciplines will help you discover different types of arguments and styles. The more you read, the more techniques you can pick up and apply in your essays.
When reading other people’s essays, do not just read them passively. Analyze everything. Find out what you like and dislike about them. Go through the arguments and the supportive points. Has the writer used a technique you’ve never seen before?
Another great way to improve your essay writing skills is reading broadsheet newspapers. Reading the columns and analyzing how the writer supports his points is very important. Find out what they left out in their essays. When you start writing your essay, you’ll be amazed by the number of brilliant ideas that will be generated by your mind.
2. Condense your arguments
By now, you’ve seen the importance of reading essays before writing your essay. An essay is as good as its arguments. When you know your argument, you’ll find it easier to create the structure of your essay and build it up to its conclusion. You need to learn how to condense your points in a short simplified way. Most people call this technique ‘the Elevator Pitch’.
Successful salespeople use the elevator pitch when they are condensing their arguments for purchasing a product or service in the shortest way possible. During their training, salespeople are told to picture themselves in a lift. Before the lift reaches the desired destination, they should have a persuading argument that will encourage the customer to buy it or want to know more.
The elevator pitch of your essay should sell your ideas to the reader leaving him or her wanting to discover more. Condensing your arguments is no easy task because it forces you to think and choose your words carefully.
3. Build your vocabulary and use it appropriately
A good vocabulary will help you express yourself clearly and concisely. Every great writer understands the importance of economy with words. They don’t waste their time trying to explain something with long tiring words when a few words would have achieved the same.
One of the best ways to improve your accuracy and effectiveness when communicating is to advance your vocabulary. When it comes to building your vocabulary, you should never rest. This is something that should be happening continuously because it’s an unending process. Using good vocabulary displays professionalism and intelligence. You’ll also write interesting arguments.
There are several ways that you can use to build your vocabulary. They include:
- Subscribing to new word emails – By subscribing to new word emails, you’ll be receiving new words and their meanings in your email account every day. During your free time, you can open your email and learn new words.
- Read extensively – While you are reading books, newspapers and essays, you’ll start finding words that you don’t know how to use properly. Having a dictionary nearby will help in widening your knowledge and building your vocabulary.
- Use a thesaurus – Using a thesaurus will help you avoid using the same words over and over again in your essay. A thesaurus will add variety to your language and improve the quality of your essay. However, you should be careful when using a thesaurus since you can use words interchangeably.
- Learn more about prefixes and suffixes – The thought of it is just tiring. However, learning more about prefixes and suffixes will help you learn more words. Knowing the root of a word will help you understand its meaning clearly.
- Write a vocabulary book – The best way to learn new things is not by reading passively but actively. Reading actively involves taking notes. Writing down every new word you learn will help you build your vocabulary quickly and easily. Writing things down makes it easier for us to remember. You can divide the words according to subjects or disciplines to make it easier for you to read during your free time.
4. Tell the reader what other readers say
Writing an essay is an opportunity for you to show how a great writer you are. People will sacrifice their time to read capturing and informative articles. And such essays are normally written by experts. Quoting other people’s opinions and feedback on what you are writing about will greatly improve the quality of your essay.
The best way to achieve this is by writing down on your notebook the important people in that field of study and summarizing how they lived and their views. When writing your essay, you’ll have an easy time referring to your notes.
While quoting is can improve the quality of your essay, you should do it in moderation. Quoting too much makes you look like you are hiding behind other people’s opinions and words. You are always free to disagree with other people’s opinions provided you have enough evidence. Demonstrating your research and reasoning skills is one of the best ways to capture and engage your readers.
5. Tone of voice and punctuation
When writing an essay, the most important thing is for you to make it easier for your readers to understand you. To spice up your essay, you should use several different sentence structures. However, your sentences should not be long and vague. You should also employ effective punctuation for you persuade your readers. The reader should not have to read a sentence twice or more to understand it.
Essay writing is not the easiest thing to do. Majority of students’ hate essay writing because they don’t practice regularly. As we said earlier, essay writing is a skill. And like all other skills, it gets better through practice and consistency.
There are many students who write great essays. These students did not join high school or college with this skill. They developed it overtime. And so can you. The five tips discussed above will help you develop and improve your essay writing skills.
Building your vocabulary and organizing your thoughts are crucial when writing an essay. Learning a new word every day will improve your essay writing skills in the long run.
Harry Southworth is a professional freelance writer and editor. He regularly contributes his insightful thoughts on essay writing and persuasion on his blog.