You would be enthusiastic about writing your first academic essay writing. This is a lucid guide that helps you in understanding the basics of writing a good essay.
Once you know how to write a good essay, you have crossed half the bridge in honing your academic writing skills. This is a great skill that all the students must gain.
We gain understanding through lot of research, and this helps us in coming up with a great essay. We are not knowledgeable without sufficient research to provide the evidence.
The good news is that essay-writing skills can be sharpened. Now let’s see the essential skills needed to write your decisive essay.
There is a specific framework for all types of essays irrespective of the field you are involved. Once you follow the points in this guide carefully, you will write a top essay.
The first step in writing your essay
This point seems to be very obvious, but it needs to be reinforced. Yes, the most essential point of writing the perfect essay is to assess the essay question. There is no meaning in writing everything you know about the subject without gauging the meaning of the question.
Significance of keywords
Now we will see the importance of keywords. Keywords are important because they show how much they are relevant to the topic. You have to sharpen your mindset to find the keyword in the essay. These will give you the points that you need to focus with full attention. For example when there is a keyword as “impact” it will help you in gaining a fair idea of how the essay should be written.
There are certain things which you should understand from keywords, including good grasp of facts and opinions. For some, you need to write fact, while for some you need to give your opinions. There should neither be too much emphasis on facts nor opinions. Generally, you would be required to examine the previous and present thinking on a specific subject. Finally, you can give your own conclusion with a clear gist of your own thoughts.
Developing your argument
Developing your argument is an important part of writing your essay. While you do this, you should remember to answer the question with clarity and not just pouring everything you know about the specific topic.
Research, research, research but don’t be overwhelmed by it
Researching important information about the topic is crucial for writing your essay. While you are assigned your topic, you should consider certain factors including word preference, word count, and outline. But when you starting from the beginning, you have to come up with the decision by yourself. While writing, you will be inclined to write more about the topic by diverting from it, but the key lies in being faithful to the specific topic.
Ponder over what you are supposed to do with utmost diligence. Then make sure that you are not just copy-pasting from the Internet. Remember that plagiarism is a big issue and you may be tempted to do it. Content spinning is also one form of plagiarism wherein you just use synonyms to replace specific words and phrases. Don’t do that also.
You may be in confusion as how to find evidence that stands for your ideas and those that are not supporting yours. You must research in such a way that you look carefully into every angle and not only those that you support. But also keep in mind that you are carried away by your research and it becomes a never-ending process.
Sourcing your evidence
Sourcing your evidence is another important aspect of developing your essay. You can have a record of the books used during your research process which will be useful for referencing and bibliography. There are specific academic styles that are requested by your school and ensure that you stick on to the asked one. The referencing style is also important for writing your research; hence it is suggested to gain guidance for it before commencing your research. The referencing style will be MLA or APA or any other style, so ensure that you get it clear before starting the research.
Plan your essay
You may think that you can directly get into writing the essay, but don’t do that mistake. Planning your essay and effectively working out your plan will give a systematic procedure to your essay writing. The essay will be structured, will have flow, and will be thoroughly researched once you do the plan diligently.
At the beginning, we told the importance of keywords. Now you have to think about how to fit the evidence that you have gathered through your research with your keywords. This will be a smooth process once you have planned your process, examined the question, and also understood the importance of keywords. The question is the center of focus of your research, and you should proceed with the research keeping it in mind.
Now you may think how to arrange the points of evidence by retaining only those that are important. For this you have to ward off the temptation of using every piece of information that you come across and only use those that are really needed for your research. Brevity is also highly important for your research besides avoidance of plagiarism. The challenge lies in including all the key points, at the same time not being carried away by unnecessary ones and not be repetitive.
Word count best practice
Writing more than the specific word count is not a good practice. You should ensure that the evidence at hand is actually relevant to what you are supporting.
Write an outline of your essay
There will be ease of writing essay when you make an outline of your essay. Here you can list down paragraph headings and where you will apply each piece of evidence. This will be instrumental in getting an appreciable idea of the development of your thoughts and the reason for selecting certain researched information. This type of drafting your essay will go a long way in bringing about a clear and precise document. You will also know any bottleneck to your evidence which you can make out before starting the writing process.
Now is the crucial part…creating your essay
Now that you have done all the planning and other important parts, you are all set to write an essay. Your spelling, grammar, syntax, and punctuation should be error-free. The examiners will keenly look out for these aspects, and so make sure there is perfection in these. Do a thorough proofreading after your writing and do two to three spelling and grammar check, besides that done through your computer. It will always be helpful if you get another person also do the editing work because a new pair of eyes can often be the best critic.
There are two ways of writing an essay. The first one is to develop the main body of your essay at the outset and then do the introduction work. The second one is to take care of the introduction in the beginning and then write the main body. The key lies in covering all the points in the thesis, without being diverted.
Some may have the skill to fit in the argument in the introduction part and then proceed with the research body. Otherwise, you can develop the body that follows a flow and then give a concise introduction for that. It all depends on how you approach your essay.
If you are choosing to write the introduction first, ensure that you write only what is needed without beating about the bush. A great introduction will be the indicator of how you assessed the topic and how you are going to write it. You are going to give your idea on the topic in the introduction and hence avoid giving quotations. It is your view on the topic and not of others in the introduction. The introduction should be crisp that leads the way to the beginning paragraph of the essay’s main body.
Essay’s main body
The beauty of the essay writing also lies in dedicating separate paragraphs to unique concepts of the essay. Now that you have already planned, work out your plan by considering each paragraph as a separate sub-heading. Your evidence plays a major role here; hence support each of your points with this. When you have doubt about the paragraph’s length, keep in mind that it should be relevant to the aspect you are writing.
The statements that you are making are essential for your essays, especially with supporting. You should assess the importance of certain words that trigger interest in you. By doing so, you will get good score and establish that you are bringing additional focus to the primary argument.
When talking about quotations, they must not be long. Just take few sentences and use them as quotes. Also remember to enclose the quotations with quotation marks.
Flow is an important aspect of essay writing. When you end the first para, ensure that it has an idea which leads to the next para. Gradually, you will gain clarity in what you are writing and the conclusion will be a fitting one. This is how you should start learning to develop an essay.
You should concentrate on taking the argument forward through each paragraph. This needs good flow as mentioned earlier. The events should progress from one to another smoothly or you can stress on the point that you made earlier. It all depends on the nature of your essay.
Writing the essay conclusion is the most challenging and interesting part. You have to tell the reader what you are presenting in the argument in a precise manner. Take care not to write an incomplete conclusion, wherein you are not giving the complete crux of the whole argument. You can bring quotations in the conclusion supporting your point. The reader would have got the overall essence of the essay by now, and it would suffice if you write a crisp conclusion which gives a gist of your argument.
Referencing your essay
Referencing is essential for making sure that you are giving credit to the authors. You have to ensure that you are not copying the work of others.
There are several kinds of referencing styles. You have to get proper assistance for giving the needed referencing style. The two common formats for referencing include author-date and notes-bibliography. As self-explanatory, the author-date offers the author’s surname and date of publishing. The notes-bibliography referencing style has footnotes and endnotes. They correspond with a superscripted citation number in the essay body. The essay bibliography gives complete information of the footnote sand endnotes.
Essay writing styles
The style of your essay is also of good concern. It varies from university to university. However, some of the typical instructions given by most universities include “Times New Roman” and “12 font”. One instruction which you should keep in mind is that you should not write in first person i.e. you are giving the opinion.
For better writing, you can go through the works of professional writers and understand their styles. Do not copy-paste under any situation. This is considered to be a grave mistake because you are stealing ideas from the writer.
Formal English is always appreciated in academic writings. While paragraphs can be between 4 to 5 sentences, try to avoid lists. The key lies in presenting the information without giving a picture of hurrying.
Proofreading your own writing may seem to be one of the most boring tasks, but it will lead to good grades. You can even ask another person to go through your writing. Take their feedback in a positive spirit. You may have written the essay absolutely well but would have missed on typographical mistakes. Remember to take care of that.
Do a final check before submitting your work and get good marks
Besides the essay part, make sure that you have appropriately referenced all quotations and worked on the bibliography neatly. You give a good image of your writing skills through the bibliography. Don’t consider the bibliography trivial; instead keep it ready simultaneously with research.
Your aim while writing the essay should be to engage the reader. Don’t be too factual or too entertaining. By entertaining, it is meant that you are giving interesting facts related to the essay so that the reader is thoroughly engaged. Your examiner would have read several essays, and the challenge lies in making your work a class apart.
You will write a good essay if you follow the above points with diligence. Once you gain this skill, you will be looking forward to write more essays. All the best! We help you to hone your skills! in academic writing