Tips for writing college papers like a pro

Some students are satisfied with C’s for their essays, but others don’t just want to get a better grade – they want to get a skill in essay writing. If you are one of the goal-oriented students who want to be professional in writing essays, follow our smart tips!

1. Think like a professional

The way you think about your essay influences your productivity a lot. Students often take their studies for granted, neglect most assignments, and constantly suffer from procrastination. Many think that things will change after they start working because work is paid. But, disregarding your duties may turn into a habit unless you do something right now.

  • Change your attitude

To start with, replace your constant demotivating ‘I have to’ with ‘I want to.’ This is an old trick, but a lot of students still don’t understand why on Earth they would WANT to write an essay. This is the hardest part.

  • Find your reasons

Three main things can motivate you to write on a topic you don’t like or when it is just hard to start:

  • a good grade,
  • a chance to learn something,
  • and perfectionism.

All of them are great to force yourself into the process of writing. At this point, if perfectionism works for you, you can even ignore the fact that it is the universal evil. But be cautious.

  • Face the reality

It is still vital to ensure that your perfectionism is not blocking you from writing. You need to understand that it is not obligatory for you to write an ideal essay and get the highest grade. Another way to adopt the realistic view is not to wait for a muse or any other kind of inspiration. Professionals never do that.

2. Prepare like a professional

Once decide to start working immediately and never stop until your essay is written, you may find it hard to remain that optimistic for a long time. You will encounter obstacles which may seem insurmountable. One of the best ways to escape most of them is preliminary work.

  • Get your topic

In all the senses. If you are to invent it yourself, do your best. If you are already given a topic, research it properly. And don’t be shy of turning to your teacher if you don’t understand it. Getting your topic right is half of your essay success.

  • Mind the type

Another backbone of preparing to write a top-notch essay is researching on its type. Plenty of things depend on it: the topic, the point of view, the way to organize the information, references you should use, etc. For example, if you need to pick one of college persuasive essay topics, but you keep focusing on argumentative ones, this is nothing but wasting your time.

  • Outline your essay

An outline is one of the most effective tools of essay writing. It is more than a plan – it is a strategy! That is why it really takes some time to create a good one. It also presupposes some preparatory research and consulting.

3. Research like a professional

You have probably already mentioned that preliminary work demands some research. At college, it can be limited to asking your teacher what to do and googling it. But when you actually start writing, this is not good enough.

  • Choose credible resources

To cut a long story short, you can’t ground your essay on the entertainment content. Including… Wikipedia! No matter how useful it is for PRELIMINARY research and general knowledge, citing Wiki is forbidden. You need some evidence for your argument, which may be:

  • data, statistics, and the like (primary sources)
  • books, scientific articles, etc. (secondary sources)
Draw your conclusions

A primary school student today knows that it is prohibited to copy and paste from secondary sources. But at college (and even university), some students tend to forget that an essay has to be totally original. This means that you have to bring some new ideas, not just repeat what has already been said. Once students hear that, they get terrified with the idea that they are to make a discovery. Of course, depending on the level of your research, the ‘discovery’ can be some results nobody got before. But it is not always this way! Often, you just have to come to conclusions of your own or reveal a new point of view.

4. Proofread like a professional

Reading your essay a couple of times before you hand it in is never enough. There are some proofreader tools you have to employ if you do not want to fail your essay.

  • Grammar checkers

They are really helpful, and you can use them to find minor details: some grammar, some wordiness, spelling, typos, etc. But don’t trust them completely.

  • Time-management

Of course, all the planning should be done before you start writing. Your plan should include proofreading. Moreover, you have to complete your paper at least a day before the deadline, because it is critical to read the essay the next day. Your paper will seem a lot different to you, and many mistakes will become obvious.

  • Observing the whole picture

There are three main things your essay should not be: ungrammatical, unclear, and journalistic. Make sure that everything in your essay is aimed at avoiding those things.

Students spend lots and lots of sleepless nights to complete one essay after another. This guide will make essay writing a lot easier for you.

Sophia Clark graduated from the University in the City of New York with B.A. in Journalism, 2011. She is a creative writer who loves to share her thoughts with readers, now she writes for Eliteessaywriters. In her free time, she enjoys writing fiction as well as reading it. Connect with her on Twitter and Google +.

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