10 Tips for Writing Academic Essays

10 Tips for Writing Academic Essays

maxwell academic writing

This handout provides some tips and strategies for writing academic essays. To give you an opportunity to practice proofreading, we have left a few spelling, punctuation, or grammatical errors in the text. See if you can spot them! If you spot the errors correctly, you will be entitled to a 10% discount.

Writing academic essays is required for the successful completion of college, graduate school, and advanced research studies. Essay writing, as required in academia, requires much more preparation, effort, and skill than most students and academics actually do put in. For students, poorly written academic essays may result in failure of a college or graduate-level course, whereas academics may have their papers rejected by journal editors, and consequently face the risk of losing grants and the opportunity to share their results from years of research with the world. This blog provides 10 resourceful tips for students and academics to master the art of writing academic essays and enhance the communication of their science. 

Tip 1. Assess the extent of work required for writing academic essays

Before writing academic essays, the author has to assess the extent of work needed, as different types of essays require different levels of preparation, resources, skill, and effort. This assessment should be conducted at the initial stages of writing academic essays. The best time to start is when ideas and perspectives are still fresh. It is important to consider available time, resources, and data. Failure to conduct this assessment exposes the student or academic to the risk of being overwhelmed by the extent of work needed and may lead to missing deadlines. 

Tip 2. Set a timeline for writing academic essays

After assessing the extent of work needed, plan and stick to a suitable timeline with the deadline in focus. Usually, longer timelines are allocated for writing academic essays. Due to this, one may procrastinate on tasks. At best, do not procrastinate, but if you do, be cautious to commence work at a time that would align with the assessment made, as explained above. 

Writing Academic Essays
Gather and organize your resources

Tip 3. Gather and organize resources

Academic essays are written based on reference to resources like books, journal articles, news items, interviews, and databases, to inform the thoughts expressed. It would be expedient to find enough resources at an early stage and on a daily basis. With this approach, one can find more than enough resources for writing academic essays and further prevent constructing skewed arguments. These resources should be organized in named folders to facilitate retrieval whenever needed.

Tip 4. Read resources extensively

In writing academic essays, extensive reading of resources stays essential to the success of essays. In college and graduate school, essays are usually required to assess students’ thought processes after reading from literature. Therefore, failure on the part of students to read resources extensively, defeats this purpose. In addition, reading abstracts and introductory paragraphs only makes one prone to under-information and misinformation, as abstracts and introductory paragraphs and sections only provide summaries. To gather accurate information for writing academic essays, the author must not forego the discussion section in academic research articles.

academic writing
In writing academic essays, extensive reading of resources stays essential to the success of essays.

Tip 5. Note relevant information and cite resources

The author must note information that will potentially aid in the synthesis of the essay. The risk involved in omitting or misquoting essential data from resources is reduced when such information is documented. Intellectual property is highly regarded in academia; thus, plagiarism should not be tolerated when writing academic essays. To avoid plagiarism, one must concurrently cite resources at this stage of the writing process. Consequently, compliance with this tip eases the author of extraneous work during the proofreading and editing stage.

Tip 6. Synthesize thoughts, analyze without bias, and take a stance, where necessary

After reading from literature’s pool of diverse thoughts, findings, and ideas, the author must now rightly synthesize his/her thoughts, analyze data and findings, and consequently decide on a conclusion based on evidence. A reader usually looks out for the author’s perspective on an issue; the author must, therefore, devote time to constructing a well-informed and meaningful argument.

Tip 7. Write academic essays in bits

Writing academic essays in one sitting is not advisable. Besides the reality that writing for longer hours results in fatigue, the thought process may be affected. Writing in bits helps give much thought to every portion of the essay at each point in time. Using this approach ensures that one’s intended meaning is clearly expressed. If the author conducts an assessment and sets a timeline, he/she will not need to endure long consecutive hours in writing academic essays. An allocation of days and hours, depending on the expected essay length, should be encouraged. 

Writing Academic Essays
Synthesize thoughts, analyze without bias, and take a stance, where necessary

Tip 8. Read and reassess the content of the completed piece

After writing academic essays, re-read the essay adequately to reassess the analysis and logical progression in the expression of thoughts based on the data and resources gathered. At this point, one should aim at confirming whether one’s essay would fulfill the demands of the scientific process.

Tip 9. Format the essay as required in writing academic essays

At this point, all quality assurance procedures, with respect to content, would have been performed. Unlike other writings, academic essays are usually written and organized according to certain specified formats, which vary according to formatting requirements of different journals and academic courses. Mostly, authors focus on citations and references, leaving other parts of the essay, during formatting. One must do well to format title pages, abstracts, body, references, tables, figures, and supplementary materials adequately.

Tip 10. Consult a second party for proofreading and editing

When writing academic essays, a second party’s assessment, proofreading, or editing can reduce syntax and grammatical errors. Although friends and family may be helpful, the finesse and transformation provided by a professional proofreading and editing service cannot be overemphasized. Please read the following blogs to understand why one should not proceed to the submission stage without consulting the services of a professional proofreader and editor: Achieve What You Want with Academic Editing and Proofreading and Why Do You Need Academic Editing” blog

Following these practical tips diligently should progress a manuscript into a published journal article. 

Writing Academic Essays
Our doctorally qualified editors will polish and fine-tune your projects.

If you need help, then contact us!

Best Edit & Proof expert proofreaders and editors aim to provide your manuscript with proper scholarly and academic tone and style. They will improve significantly the chances of having your research manuscript accepted for publishing. Our expert editors provide subject-matter proofreading and editing services in a number of fields categorized under various disciplines. Having considerable knowledge and expertise, they will help you find the right tone and style for your manuscript.

If you need our expert proofreaders to format your academic manuscripts, or to give you the fundamental rules for formatting your academic manuscripts as described in your guidelines, such as MLA and APA styles, then contact us. At Best Edit & Proof, our proofreaders and editors edit every type of academic manuscript. We have a user-friendly website and our ordering process is simple.

Best Edit & Proof Writing academic essays
If you need support for academic editing and proofreading, contact us for assistance

If you would like our language and subject-matter experts to work on your project and improve its academic tone and style, then please visit the order page. It’s easy! It takes only a few minutes to submit your manuscript and complete the process. Click here to see how it works.

We have flat-rate pricing based on the type of service, word count, and turnaround time. Enter your word count or copy and paste your document into our pricing calculator to get an instant quote.

If you need support for academic editing and proofreading, contact us for assistance. You can also e-mail us or use the 24/7 live chat module to get direct support. Our doctorally qualified editors will polish and fine-tune your projects.

Follow us on Twitter, Medium, and LinkedIn.

For more posts, click here.

You May Also Like..

how to use et al. in APA Style

How and When to Use ”et al.” in APA In-Text Citations?

This blog is a discussion of using et al. in APA in-text citations. To give you an opportunity to practice your […]

academic writing discussion section

5 Helpful Questions to Consider When Writing A Discussion Section

This blog discusses 5 helpful questions to consider when writing a discussion section. To give you an opportunity to practice proofreading, we […]

how to use et al. in APA Style

5 Practical Ways to Avoid Plagiarism

This handout provides 5 practical ways to avoid plagiarism. To give you an opportunity to practice proofreading, we have left a few […]