If you can’t write essays well, don’t worry. You can always learn and improve your skills.
There are a number of different things that you can do to improve your English essay writing skills. For example, you can make a habit of reading stuff on a regular basis. Similarly, you can incorporate the use of writing tools in your work. The list goes on.
In this post, we’re going to be looking at 7 such steps that you can take to improve your writing skills.
7 Tips to Improve English Essay Writing Skills
Get in the Habit of Reading Regularly
There are a few things that can help you improve your writing skills more than a good reading habit.
By reading professionally written content, you can get an idea about how you can structure your sentences properly and how you can use some sophisticated vocab in it without making it too difficult to understand etc.
Essay writing is not really a technical skill. In other words, you can’t just learn a bunch of rules and then apply them whenever you want to write an awesome essay.
True, there are some rules that you have to rigidly adhere to, but they are not the end all and be all of essay writing skills.
Rather, essay writing is a creative and intuitive ability. And being so, it can be greatly enhanced merely by reading stuff that is written by experts and professionals.
Reading research papers and professional essays is a good way to start. Gradually, you can move on to more difficult stuff.
Use a Grammar Checker After Every Session
Grammatical perfection is one of the main and essential factors that your writing necessarily has to possess. When it comes to improving your essay writing skills, one of the primary aspects that you should focus on perfecting is your grammar and spelling etc.
You may wonder that since we’re mentioning grammatical perfection as the ‘primary’ aspect to perfect, then why list it here at point number 2?
The first point that we mentioned i.e., making a reading habit, is actually a way of improving grammar in itself. However, to boost that process, you can incorporate the use of a grammar checker in your post-writing routine.
Grammar checkers can be great for sharpening your grammatical sense since they can quickly point out all the errors in your content.
Plus, apart from spotting the errors, they can also tell you the reason and logic behind them. This will help you understand the errors and avoid them in the future.
And this is, by the way, an important point that we should mention before concluding this part. When you want to use a grammar checker for your essays, don’t just run the check and then remove the errors without looking at them. Rather, you should look at every mistake to properly understand the problem.
Use Readability Checkers
Contrary to what some people may think, essay writing skills are not just about learning and using fancy words or complicated sentences.
In a lot of cases, keeping your writing readable and enjoyable is a more difficult task than making it complex and sophisticated.
If you are looking to improve your essay writing skills, you need to get an idea about the various factors and aspects in your write-up that can make it difficult to comprehend.
For example, here are some factors that can make a piece of writing difficult to understand:
- Excessive usage of passive voice
- Excessive usage of adverbs
- Long sentences
- Paragraphs with more than 3 – 4 lines
- Difficult words
- Absence of breaks i.e., headings, bullets, sub-headings
To get some help in spotting these issues in your writing, you can use readability checkers. Readability checkers are basically tools that are made to find readability issues in the entered content.
After getting your essay checked using these tools, you can make a mental note of the issues and avoid them in the future.
Learn to Paraphrase
In the academic world, paraphrasing is generally seen as something ‘frowned upon’, to be a little mild.
That is because paraphrasing can be employed by people who want to mooch off of other people’s work without putting in their own effort.
However, while that is a notorious use for which paraphrasing can be used, it’s not the only one. There are some other less-sneaky and constructive uses for it as well.
In essay writing, there can be a lot of situations in which you may have to quote someone from a source, but you can’t do it verbatim. That could be due to the fact that you may have already used a lot of quotes in the essay. In these types of situations, paraphrasing can be a good alternative to try.
However, when paraphrasing any content, there are two things that you have to keep in mind:
- You have to make sure that you paraphrase the content thoroughly
- If you are not thorough and are just changing some words and phrases, then you need to cite the source
Use a Sentence Rephraser
Although manual paraphrasing can be comparatively more accurate than using a tool, the latter can be the more viable option if the content at hand is lengthy and expansive.
In other words, if the content that you are trying to rephrase is very long and lengthy, you can use a smart sentence rephraser instead of doing it manually.
Using a sentence rephraser can also help you in improving your essay writing skills since you will be able to see the type of changes that the tool makes to the given content.
Similarly, if you happen to pick a good tool for this purpose, you will also be able to look at different ways to work your sentences.
However, it should be noted that there are quite a few sentence rephrasing tools available online, and they are not all the same in quality. Some of them work with a smart and intelligent set of algorithms while others are comparatively very basic. When picking a tool, you should first check it a couple of times using some random content to get an idea of how it works.
Use Plagiarism Checkers
If you are looking to improve your essay writing skills, you have to first make sure that you know what plagiarism is and how you can avoid it.
If you happen to sharpen your skills and start writing some outstanding essays, but at the same time, you’re not concerned about plagiarism, then those skills are not going to be very helpful for you.
Plagiarism essentially refers to the practice of taking someone’s content and using it as one’s own work (wholly or partly) without giving credit to the original source.
There are different types and forms of plagiarism. We’re just going to list them here without delving into them:
- Direct plagiarism
- Mosaic plagiarism
- Source-based plagiarism
Nowadays, since plagiarism can be very easily spotted using a plagiarism checker, people don’t perpetrate it intentionally a lot. However, plagiarism can creep inside the work of straight and honest writers, even if they have no intention to do it.
That is why plagiarism checkers exist. They help these types of writers to make sure that their work is completely unique before they turn it in.
So, while the above is all well and good, how can plagiarism checkers help you improve your essay writing skills? They can be helpful since they can allow you to write unique and original stuff without any sort of duplication in it. That’s pretty much it.
Always Proofread Your Work
When it comes to improving your writing skills, you basically have to learn new stuff while fixing and perfecting your existing skills.
If you keep learning new things but don’t work on your existing skills, you’re not going to benefit a lot.
Whenever you write something, always make sure to proofread it. That way, you will be able to spot any grammatical and spelling errors that you may have made.
Plus, this will also help you find any errors that you consistently make so that you can work on avoiding them in particular.
And that is pretty much it.
Writing skills are something that you have to constantly work on improving. There is no pinnacle or fixed point that you can reach and then just stop. There are always newer words that you can use and there are always newer expressions that you can incorporate into your writing.
If you don’t know where to start improving your writing skills, you can follow the tips mentioned above.
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