Not everyone dreams of becoming a researcher or pursuing an academic career, but all students need to learn proper research and writing to succeed in their studies. While it comes easy to some people, others have to struggle to complete even a small paper, let alone dissertations. However, there are several little "secrets" that may help in improving writing skills. This paper will share them with you.
Secret 1. Practice Makes Perfect.
The more you write, the better your papers will be. Do not miss any chance to write more. For instance, many students neglect their formative assignments. Why bother if they have no impact on the final grade? But those students, who got distinctions at the end, usually have submitted all the formative assignments. They have asked their teachers for feedback, learned something new and improved their skills. There are other opportunities too, such as student newspapers or group projects.
Secret 2. Little Helpers of Any Writer.
There are many amazing resources that can make research and writing much easier. My favorites include Google Scholar, Google Books, Owl Purdue Writing Lab and Cite This for Me. Google Scholar has millions of academic articles and books covering all disciplines and a wide range of topics. This tool is convenient for academic research, especially if your teacher insists that you should use only scholarly sources. Sometimes even reading an abstract is enough to find the piece of information you need. Google Books provides previews of many books, which may not be available in your library. Owl Purdue Writing Lab and Cite This for Me assist you with formatting and referencing.
Secret 3. Read More!
Reading relevant literature enables a student to grasp the essence of academic writing. Read books, peer-reviewed journals and other sources specific to your field of study (e.g. annual reports and business newspapers for those, who study business and management). It will make you familiar with set phrases, typical paper structures and common methodologies. Most importantly, reading increases your awareness of main theories and new developments in your field of knowledge. As a result, you will be able to navigate in the ocean of information much faster.
Secret 4. Understand Your Topic.
Never start writing or even planning the structure of your paper before you understand the requirements. Make sure you are familiar with all main concepts and have read enough. Naturally, one has to keep researching while writing, but there is no point to start writing without preliminary research on a topic.
Secret 5. Structure Comes First.
Good papers are always well-balanced. Think about what is your main point, what you should discuss and how many words each part must contain. The golden rule says that any paper has an introduction, main body and conclusion. Adjust this basic structure to the specific requirements you have and link the parts, so that your thoughts flow smoothly.
Secret 6. Format Your Paper Nicely.
Formatting a paper (all those margins, running heads and referencing) is quite a tedious task. Nevertheless, it is what makes your work presentable and easy to read. A nice paper must be divided into paragraphs with appropriate sub-headings.
Secret 7. Remember to Proofread!
Being in hurry to submit a paper and have that task done, one often forgets to proofread the paper. Unfortunately, typos and poor phrasing can make even the best paper look unprofessional. Do not embarrass yourself by having your spelling mistakes corrected by your professor - proofread your paper! Online dictionaries may be a good source, especially for those students, who have to write in a non-native language.
To sum it up, it takes some time and significant effort to become really good at research and writing. Be patient, keep working and you will surely get "A" for your paper!
Free Writing Help Resources
- Are College Graduates Prepared for Today's Jobs and Econonomy?
- The Seven Secrets of Making School Research and Writing Perfect
- Researching the True Value and Real Cost of College Education
- University of Life - An Interview with a Professional Research Writer and Editor
- The Value of Homework on Student Motivation and Academic Progress
- Student Guide to Better Writing and Research Skills
- The Best Methods of Dealing with Student Plagiarism and Academic Misconduct
- Sample Personal Statement - Editor and Writer Agency Position