Top 10 Essay Tips

1. Begin early and manage your time carefully. You’ve been told this many times before, but it is so easy to allow time to slowly disappear when you have other work deadlines to meet as well as your social calendar to attend to. Commencing early only means that you are thinking ahead and allocating your time wisely. If you have reading and research to do, then the sooner you get started the better. Beginning early will also assist you in dealing with certain problems like the obtaining of the necessary research information or being temporarily brought down with the flu just before the due date is up for the assignment submission. Beginning early gives you plenty of time to get the work done as well as giving your brain the chance to regurgitate some ideas.

2. Gaining a good understanding of the assignment. If the actual topic is assigned and not chosen by you it is vital to gain a clear understanding of the assignment requirements. Study the topic taking each word at a time to establish the requirements and scale of the work. It may be necessary to highlight notable words in the assignment title and consider how they are related to any reading or lectures you have undertaken already. Work out if you must analyze or only write down the facts. If you are uncertain, ask other students or the tutor for a complete interpretation.

3. Sort out your research information and gather your thoughts. It will be necessary for you to read the materials but you will also have to organise the information that you are referring to and obtaining from other places. Begin by outlining key ideas and writing down notes that are relevant to these ideas. As you put together these materials your thoughts should become more established. Put some thought into how you are going to link these facts together in a well co ordinated manner.  Give yourself the option to rethink or alter your focus as you become exposed to more materials. When you arrive at this point you can arrange your ideas into a more organised outline format of the task. Even though you might not require having to do too much research you can take some time to arrange your ideas on paper.

4. Use Examples to gain understanding. If you are unsure about the correct way to write essays or how you should source the correct information look at some examples. If you are able to read other essays it will assist you to understand how to arrange and showcase the available information. A good way to handle it if you really are in a quandary is to buy a custom written paper from a suitable company like Examine how the writer has introduced the subject, extends the subject and writes a clearly written conclusion. Study it to see if there is a methodical approach used to write the essay. Consider whether it moves along like a conversation or simply like the best lecture. Study how the writer makes the subject matter appear interesting. Try to work out if the language and style follow a pattern or if they appear to be inconsistent. Studying examples helps when you are improving your own work, as you can study the same features and establish how good your own approach is. You can also access papers that are written about a similar subject to make sure you are writing to the required standards of that specific area.

5. Plagarising is unacceptable. Write down the source of any quotations or ideas. You must not blindly use other people’s work  without use of the correct citations. Do not merely copy anyone else’s work and simply alter some words. To do this is considered to be cheating and will attract a fail. You should not forget that there is computer software available that can detect plagiarism as well. In other words if you choose to use someone else’s ideas or words you should correctly acknowledge them as the source for ideas and information.

6. Concentrate on drafting your work. Don’t concentrate much of your time on the introduction or conclusion. Target on writing your thoughts onto paper. Continually monitor your progress to ensure that you write everything down on the page in some way or other. Use your own voice, as if you were talking with a friend. By writing in this way you will know that you will have enough time on your hands to rethink your ideas and rewrite. If you are likely to repeat yourself or your grammar is not too good, you will need some extra time to rethink and rewrite.

7. Write plenty of drafts. Put some thought into the arrangement of your essay to ensure the structure is correct. If you have already had plenty of writing experience you might be able to leave out a stage here. If you do your rearranging by simply cutting and pasting make sure you attach the sentences in such a way to ensure a good flow to your essay. And study at the steady flow of words and ideas. Once you have completed a couple of drafts study your introduction and conclusion. Make sure your introduction outlines the subject matter and its content. Ensure that the conclusion sufficiently brings together what you have written in your essay and does not inadvertently introduce any new ideas. Check that your essay has covered all of the ideas you had decided to use. Each idea must merge clearly into the next and use natural language features. If you read the essay out aloud you will get a better feel of the flow of the ideas. You will progress as you write and prepare more and more essays, eventually you will get your writing to flow better. The more rewriting and using better words the more your writing will flow.

8. Clear thoughts and concise wording. Writing in a concise manner forces you to think more clearly as well. Language is used as a way of consolidating one’s thoughts, clumsy use of language may mean you are clumsy thinker. To ensure all your words are put to good use, make sure you write active sentences which are using active verbs. A consistent way of putting across your thoughts should be maintained throughout the essay. Don’t hesitate to look-up words that you are uncertain about so that your essay is not ruined by one word used or spelt incorrectly. At some stage make a print of your essay and start the editing process by removing words that are unnecessary. There are often far too many surplus words or repeats in an essay which are totally useless. By removing or substituting words should improve the clearness of your writing even though it may result in a shorter essay.

9. Presentation and format. You could be very clever, but don’t rely on it as you can still get marked down for bad spelling, wrongly placed margins and other incorrect styling features. These are marked down for various reasons, including department policy or simply to tutors fed up with clumsy work. If you are not sure of the standard requirement for essays you should obtain a copy of the rules and study them before it is too late. It would be a great pity to forfeit a grade for clumsy presentation issues. At the very least you should scan your work with a spell checker on your computer. Of course printing a hard copy can make a lot of difference when searching for errors. Surprisingly, even after some good editing mistakes in typing and spelling may be found.

10. Searching for the different angle. Spend a bit of time studying your topic and conducting the research. Ask yourself whether your angle on the topic is much different from your tutor’s and is he or she likely to penalise you if you do more than just covering the facts surrounding the subject. You must check to see whether any original thinking on your part is acceptable or simply not approved. Part of this is knowing the tutor and knowing if original thinking is encouraged or discouraged. It is most important that you know what you think. Pursue the ideas that interest you the most and develop your own thoughts. If you happen to have a useful insight on the information it might be a good idea to discuss the ideas with your tutor. Having original ideas is not quite as simple as it seems. Particularly in your role as a student you might think you have a novel idea but you soon discover it is not that original at all. Occasionally making a comparison between two ideas brings about a new way of thinking that appears innovative. Overall originality can bring about risks, and rewards cannot be guaranteed in the short term. The idea of original thinking can lead to benefits not just in school but in the world around you.