Writing essays is difficult. It is one of the most important skills that college students can acquire, but also one that fewer and fewer students come to school prepared to develop. Indeed, it is increasingly the case
that colleges and universities are requiring introductory or even remedial academic writing courses for new students entering school because they are no longer arriving on campus with the essay-writing skills that were traditionally expected of freshmen. High schools do not often teach the kinds of essay-writing skills that students need in college, and many arrive on campus mystified by collegiate essays and the strange stylistic requirements that they will be expected to utilize.
So, what is to be done? If you are looking to improve your essay writing skills, there are a few tips and tricks that can help you to become a better essay writer, whether you are new to essay writing or if you have years of experience writing college essays.
Get plenty of rest
This might not seem like an essay-writing tip, but it is one of the most important. If you were to survey
students and ask them about their essay-writing style, you would likely find that many students write their papers at the last possible minute, often the night before a paper is due, and typically late at night, after 10:00 p.m. This can cause a number of problems, particularly when you are not fully rested and are trying to engage your creativity and your reasoning skills while in a tired state. By planning a bit ahead to get a good night’s sleep, you can be refreshed and easily prevent errors.
Write earlier in the day
Similarly, by writing your essays in the morning or early afternoon, you will be more likely to be able to avoid careless errors and to create stronger and more coherent essays.
Every student has the best time of the day for writing. While most students try to write late at night, for the typical student, the morning hours are the time when they are most alert and best able to write great essays. Typically, our attention and focus peak early in the morning, wane in early afternoon, recover some in late afternoon, and decline again in the hours before bed. It can take some time management skills and some extra planning to get the time to write in the morning, but if you can swing it, it will make a difference in the quality of your final product. If not, late afternoon can also be a good choice. Late at night is usually the worst time to try to write an essay.
Practice your grammar, vocabulary, and syntax skills
Writing is an art, but when you have the right skills, you can develop better essays. One way to improve your skills is to do practice sets and skill building activities based on grammar, vocabulary, and syntax. There are many online skill builders that can help you with this, and your school’s writing center might have additional resources. The more that you practice and build these skills, the easier it becomes to put them into practice in terms of developing your essays quickly and effectively.
Attend a seminar or webinar at your school’s library
Library research is key to developing strong essays, which is why it is beneficial to learn how to use your library’s research tools most effectively. Most schools offer seminars or webinars in which librarians will give you instructions on the best ways to research your topic. Taking advantage of these free resources will help you to improve your research and thus the information that you have available to work with in developing your essay. If you are not able to attend a presentation, or your library does not have one available, librarians are usually happy to help you with your research, and it can be beneficial to take advantage of their expertise to find the right resources for your project.
Familiarize yourself with writing formats and styles
Most instructors have a preferred format that they will expect you to use such as APA, Chicago, MLA, or
Harvard styles. You can greatly improve your essay writing skills by familiarizing yourself with the basics of the style your instructor requires. When you are able to write without having to stop to check formatting or style requirements—or when, for example, a citation is required in each style—you will be able to save time, keep your focus on the writing, and keep on task more effectively. Keep in mind, however, that each of the styles is a little bit different, so you will want to be sure you know the differences before you begin writing in your chosen style.
Consider using an essay writing service
Using an essay writing service can be an efficient way to overcome your essay challenges. Services like SmartWritingService.comk offer professional academic papers that can help with the toughest college essays. Using the help of writers from a professional company can help you to see the right way to approach any essay and the most effective way to develop your analysis and research your topic.
Professional writers have an advantage because they have years of experience developing essays similar to those that you need written and can quickly and efficiently produce high quality writing that can serve as a beneficial model for exactly how to approach your paper.