One of the most frustrating tasks for college students is having to write assignments. College-level writing can be daunting for even the most gifted students, primarily because of the strict demands. If you are asked to work on a project and have no clue how to proceed, don’t panic. This article takes you through the basic steps of creating an essay that will impress your professor.
Familiarize Yourself with the Instructions
One of the most important things to do before working on your academic essay is reading and understanding the instructions. Each college assignment comes with a prompt, which is a tool that directs students to write about a specific subject in a certain way. The point of giving out a prompt is to make sure that your writing follows specific standards and covers given learning outcomes.
Before you start writing, spend some time reading through what is expected of you. Analyze the various requirements, highlighting keywords and essential phrases. Also, make sure that you know when the assignment is due and the formatting requirements.
Brainstorm and Choose a Topic
The next important aspect to consider when planning your academic essay is the topic you intend to write about. Sometimes, instructors will make your work easy by picking a topic for you. When this is done, your job is to make sure that you center your arguments and evidence around the allocated topic.
Most of the time, however, professors give students room to choose their topics as long as they stick to the guidelines given in the instructions. Topic selection is crucial as it determines the quality and depth of your writing.
To get started, brainstorm for ideas that you can then build on through research. The best topics are clear and narrow, allowing you to cover the subject within the scope of the assignment. Don’t hesitate to ask for feedback from your professor on the topic choice.
Start with an Outline
An excellent way to structure your paper even before you start writing is outlining. An outline guides academic writing, ensuring that the student covers all significant points and does not stray. It comprises short sentences or phrases that cover the ideas created through brainstorming.
With an outline, your writing will flow much faster, and the outcome will be impressive. Outlining also makes it easy to make decisions regarding your main points and the specific information to support the ideas. If things get too complicated, you can always hire a professional essay writer online.
Another critical point to remember when writing an academic essay for college is the importance of research. College-level papers should be original but have to be placed in the context of credible evidence and examples in the field. This means looking for reliable sources with information that can support your arguments. The better the evidence you use, the more believable your presentation will seem.
When researching, make use of electronic databases, using keywords to find the resources you need. Also, engage a variety of materials, combining information from books and reliable websites with data from reliable and peer-reviewed journals. In the end, you will need to cite all the sources you consult when building your arguments.
Organize Your Findings and Start Writing
If you have created an outline, use it to organize the findings of your research. After that, you can begin creating your first draft as soon as possible. Remember, you will need to write multiple drafts, which means there will be space to make corrections.
When working on the initial draft, don’t worry about grammar and spelling rules. Your only goal should be to articulate your key points, using the evidence researched to build your thesis statement. Also, your paper will have three main parts, starting with an introduction and ending with a short conclusion. Note that, although the introduction comes first, you can write it last after the body paragraphs.
One rule to observe when writing academic papers is originality. Colleges have strict rules against plagiarism, and students who copy texts from other sources risk serious sanctions. To avoid plagiarism, use your ideas and cite all sources engaged in supporting key points. Also, make intelligent use of paraphrasing and quotations.
Edit and Proofread Your Work
Creating a spectacular academic paper requires multiple rewritings. This means that, once you are done with the first draft, you need to go through it several times, correcting grammar, spelling, and formatting mistakes. You could also ask a friend to assist with revising your writing.
This article offers a few insights on how to write an academic essay that will keep readers engaged. Use simple language and avoid jargon. Most importantly, cite your sources and edit your work.