Practical Tips For Perfecting Your Essay Writing Skills

For some students, writing an essay can be a daunting task, but for others it is an opportunity to showcase their skills and shine. For the latter students, writing exercises present the challenge of coming up with something better than the last one. A major problem when it comes to writing regularly is that it is easy to find yourself using the same formula every time, especially when you have received positive feedback from your instructor on the previous papers. So how do you take your writing skills to the next level? Here are a few practical skills you need to develop in order to perfect your writing skills.

  • Read what other people have written
  • It is a known fact that the books that you read will subconsciously help in molding you own style of writing. Similarly, reading great essays by other people can help you to enhance your essay writing skills. You should try to read as many great ones as you can, including the ones written by your fellow students and other academics. As you read them, try to be critical by thinking about what makes them great, what you don’t like about them, how persuasive you think they are, what unique techniques the writer, and so forth.

  • Develop your Vocabulary and put it to good use when writing
  • With good vocabulary, you can express what you mean clearly, precisely and concisely. Keep in mind the fact that one of the characteristics of good pieces of writing is economy with words. There is no point in expressing an idea in fifty words when it can be expressed in twenty words. One of the ways to achieve this is to use advanced vocabulary. You can get advanced vocabulary by reading widely and referring to a dictionary, using thesaurus to find synonyms and antonyms, and subscribing to a ‘word a day’ email.

  • Avoid using the same words over and over
  • One way of sounding intelligent is to avoid repeating yourself. While writing, try to concentrate on effective use of language in order to build a strong argument, as well as create some sense of structure. Try to use different transition words that will make the reader feel as if he/she is being guided through the argument or problem to the conclusion or solution.

  • Inform the Reader about other people’s ideas/arguments/suggestions
  • Academic writing offers you an opportunity to showcase how wide you have read. To that end, it is wise to occasionally quote original sources and other people’s opinions on the topic you are writing about. However, do not quote excessively. When writing academic papers, it is advisable to mix other people’s opinions with your own so that it doesn’t look as if you are trying to hide behind other people’s statements in order to make a point. In fact, you can even disagree with some of the scholars you quote if you can present valid reasoning and evidence for doing so.

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