Writing essays is a fact of life for most college students, but the process of writing essays can also be make-or-break for many students’ college careers. Romania has the lowest percentage of people with college degrees in the European Union, and currently just over half a million students are enrolled in college in a country of 19 million people. At the same time, Romania is seeing a massive “brain drain,” as the best educated of the country’s people are emigrating out of Romania to find better opportunities. For students looking to study abroad, one of the most effective skills they can develop are English-language essay writing skills, which are often a ticket to success in some of the world’s best universities.
So, what can you do to improve your essay writing skills? In his article, we’ll take a look at effective techniques to enhance your English-language essay writing skills.
Read a Lot of Essays
One of the best ways to improve your writing skills is to become a voracious reader. The more you read quality writing, the more you will pick up on the rhythms and structure of great essays. Each year, several publishers produce “Best Of” anthologies that collect essays and nonfiction pieces on a range of topics, and this can be an effective place to start in order to get exposed to quality essays and effective ways to write them.
Build Your Vocabulary
Building essay writing skills means having the building blocks to construct great essays. In this case, developing your English vocabulary can help you to produce more effective essays. That doesn’t mean that you should be using the biggest, most complicated words to show off. Instead, it means that you need to have the right words to say exactly what you mean to say as you write.
Improve Your Mechanics
An academic essay can only be great if it is clear and grammatically correct. Building your writing mechanics can help you write stronger and more effective essays. Many schools offer tutorials, training, or resources to help with grammar, spelling, punctuation, organization, style, clarity, and flow. By focusing on the fundamentals, you will have a stronger overall essay by laying a powerful foundation that you can build upon with higher-level reasoning and analytical skills.
Befriend a Librarian
Your school’s library is a portal to high-quality academic resources that will make your paper stronger and better grounded in research. Don’t rely entirely on a search engine like Google to find resources. Many college papers require academic research, which often involves scholarly databases that can only be accessed via a library. Your library’s librarians are great resources to help you locate sources and to learn to use databases effectively to find sources. By taking advantage of your librarians’ help, you can develop better papers with more powerful research to impress your instructors.
Develop Your Transitions
Essays that read smoothly are more likely to be graded higher than those that seem choppy. One way to help make your essays smooth is to invest in your transitions. Transitions are words and phrases that link paragraphs and sections together to show how what comes next links to what came before. Words like “similarly,” “by contrast,” “therefore,” and “however” show the reader how a new paragraph follows from the previous paragraph. There are many types of transitions, so learning to develop a range of options can help keep your essay lively and smooth.
Write an Outline Before You Begin Writing the Essay
One of the most effective ways to improve your writing—and to write fast—is with an outline. Outlining lets you work through the process of organizing information and identifying what to include and exclude before you start the actual writing of the paper. When you have a fully developed outline, you will have a roadmap that will allow you to write your paper more quickly and effectively than if you were improvising as you went along. It’s not just busywork! The more time and effort that you put into the outlining process, the easier and faster the actual writing of the paper will be once you sit down to start the writing.
Leave Time for Revision and Proofreading
Once you’ve finished writing your draft, you’re not done with your paper. You should always leave time to go over your first draft to make changes and revisions that will improve the final product. Read your paper once for content and clarity, making revisions as needed, and then review it a second time to catch lingering mechanical errors. The closer to flawless you can make your draft, the less likely it will be for a writing error to distract your professor and cost you points.
Consider Using an Essay Writing Service
Seeing how a professional would write papers for you can help to free you from the challenges of college essay writing. Many students benefit from using a professional essay writing service to write custom papers for them. A custom essay is typically written by an expert writer to address the specific requirements of your assignment. When you get assistance from a professional writer, you can see how an expert would research and develop a paper on your exact topic, giving you a thorough roadmap that you can use as a model to help you in developing your own paper.