Rare is the student that is fond of academic assignment writing. It seems that students all around the world have been struggling with paper writing (or whatever they used to write on) as long as the education system exists. Now we have a lot of tools to help us create impressive academic papers, but demands for a paper are also much higher than they used to be twenty years ago. More than that, the competition is also more intense, since there are simply more people on Earth (hello, captain obvious!) and more kids are aspiring to receive higher education. Long story short, writing school and college assignments didn’t get easier since ancient times, and some believe it got harder.
How to Improve Your Academic Writing Skills
Sometimes it seems that college has some obstacles you just can’t overcome, and one of them is academic writing. Assignments become harder, demands become more strict with each year, and many students still have a very vague understanding of principles of academic writing. These principles are not that complicated, especially if you have enough time to comprehend and practice them. Here are the three main principles:
- Clear structure.
- Supporting evidence.
- Critical analysis.
Principle #1: Structure
We bet that you’ve heard more than a thousand times how important the structure is for any kind of assignment. But why it is so vital? Let’s dig a little bit deeper.
First of all, clear structure makes your paper easier for comprehension, and this means that it gives a positive impression to your readers from the first sight. They may not know why, but they will like your paper. Secondly, solid structure helps you keep track of your thoughts and arguments, so you can include all the vital ones and cross out those that are minor if you are exceeding the word count, and you won’t miss out that fun fact you decided to include to keep your readers interested. It’s like having a grocery list: as you go through the store sections, you take the products you need and avoid those you don’t.
And finally, it increases your total points. Yes, this reason may be quite pragmatic, but we assume that you decided to improve your academic assignment writing not because of pure love for essays and research papers, but to get a higher GPA.
Principle #2: Evidence
This is easy. Your supporting evidence is basically all the facts, opinions and quotes you have found while doing research. Choose the most important ones to back-up your claims in the assignments. How can you figure out what are the most important? Look for theories and quotes stated by prominent scientists in your field. If your opinion is not a very popular one (for example, you chose an opposite point of view, which is rarely supported), still try to find major scientists who approved it.
Remember to be careful when using quotations. Only 10% of the completed paper is the preferable length of the amount of citations used. It is better to paraphrase, analyze and summarize the theories of other people in your paper, than to simply quote words of other people.
Principle #3: Analysis
We’ve already touched the topic of analysis in the previous point. The distinct feature of academic writing assignments is their analytical nature. Your job is not only to retell the theories of other scientists who wrote on the topic, but evaluate their works, show what has changed since they have written their papers, and what information, in your opinion, is lacking. More than that, you need to criticize your own ideas in your paper.
It’s hard to do this part correctly from the first time, but with practice, as you write more papers, it will get easier. The part of opposing arguments performs a vital function in your assignment. It shows your readers and reviewers that you realize the fact that your theory is not perfect, and you are always open to other people’s opinions, suggestions and ideas for improvement. This is what science is all about – honest and open dialogue to find the ultimate truth.
Where Can I Get Help?
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