6 Writers Tips for Mastering College Papers

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Some people are naturally gifted when it comes to writing college papers; for others, it takes time, a lot of effort and can be confusing. These six tips will help you completely master the art of writing college papers, making sure you are always handing in papers that are informative, well-structured, and hit all the marking criteria to get the best grade possible.

1. Make a Plan

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. This saying couldn’t be truer when it comes to writing college papers. Before you start writing, set out your paper clearly and make some notes on the information you need to include in each section. Using the marking criteria at this stage will help to ensure you are including all the necessary and relevant information in your paper.

2. Use a Consistent Structure

Having a clear structure to your college paper makes a whole load of difference. Even if you have good information, if your writing isn’t structured clearly, you aren’t going to get a good grade. Always begin with an introduction that highlights the topic and order of the points you are going to make. Your paragraphs should follow a consistent structure, presenting, explaining, and linking information, and your conclusion should summarize all the key points.

3.Stay Focused on Your Topic

Going off on tangents and talking about something completely different to what you are supposed to be discussing is not what professors want to see in your writing. They want you to stay focused on the topic and only discuss relevant information. You can use your structure to ensure that you are staying focused by always linking your points and explaining why or how it is connected to your title.

4. Use Professional Language

When writing college papers, you need to sound as professional as possible. Certain word choices sound more formal than others; for example, using however instead of also, or therefore instead of so. A great tip is to try and avoid using personal pronouns like ‘I’ or ‘we’ as this sounds unprofessional unless you are asked to include your own viewpoint. Using unnecessary language in sentences also reduces the formality of your writing and phrases like as discussed earlier or in this section I will discuss brings down the academic tone and should be avoided.

5. Avoid Plagiarism

Plagiarism should be taken incredibly seriously when it comes to writing college papers, and to be able to master writing, you need make sure you are citing sources and other materials correctly. Consequences for plagiarism can be severe and end up costing your college career if continued. It can get confusing and there is a thin line between common knowledge and plagiarizing. If you are ever unsure, the safest route is to cite it and always upload your paper to an easy to use plagiarism checker before submitting.

6. Proofread, Proofread, and Proofread Again

After you’ve been staring at the same words for hours and hours on end, your brain starts to go all fuzzy and it becomes hard to spot any small, accidental mistakes. There are bound to be some avoidable mistakes in your writing, which is why proofreading is so important. Proofread as you write, but also leave your writing for a few hours and go back to it later to proofread. This will give your brain time to clear and refocus so you might pick out mistakes that you previously overlooked. It is also really useful to let a second pair of eyes have a read; sometimes someone else can see things that you cannot. 

If you make sure your writing is always clear, you use a logical structure, remain focused and avoid plagiarism, you will be a master of writing college papers in no time.

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