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1. Failing to carry out enough research
According to Scotland’s University of St. Andrews, it should take you 10-15 hours of research time to write a 2-3,000 word essay. Despite this, many students skip the research entirely or fail to carry it out in enough depth, and this can have a serious impact on their final grades. When it comes to essay writing, no amount of research is too much – as long as you save enough time for you to actually write the thing. The research that you do will give you a thorough grounding in the current thinking on your chosen subject, and the best essay writers are those who familiarise themselves with this thinking and then build upon it.
2. Skipping the editing stage
Stephen King famously said, “To write is human, to edit is divine.” This is true for all forms of writing, but it’s particularly true when you’re writing academically. The editing stage exists so that you can iron out any problems with your work before the final submission, whether you’re rewriting areas that don’t work or whether you’re picking up on spelling mistakes and grammar fails. No essay is truly finished until it’s been thoroughly edited and proofread.
3. Quoting instead of rephrasing
Quotes are great when they’re supporting your argument, but many essay writers take it a step too far and constantly quote different sources when it would be enough to paraphrase them and include them as a reference. When it comes to essay writing, brevity is key – and stuffing your work with words to bulk it out is a bad idea. Instead, the best essay writers paraphrase where possible and only include a direct quote when the source is the most succinct way to say it.
Plagiarism is obviously a big no-no whether you’re writing academically or whether you’re writing a novel. One thing to look out for in particular is accidental plagiarism, when you regurgitate someone else’s argument as your own without giving them credit. It’s surprisingly easy to do this, which is why it’s so important to keep track of your sources and to take notes throughout your research so that you can track your argument and identify who influenced it. If you’re worried about potential plagiarism, use an online tool to check for it and correct anything it identifies.
5. Not asking for help
At the end of the day, nothing can compare with professional help. That’s why many people choose to work with essay writing specialists who can help out with everything from proofreading to research and writing. If you choose to go this route, be sure to search for the top essay writing companies reviews so you know you’re getting the best you can get. If you don’t have the budget or the inclination to work with a professional, you’re still going to need some help. Ask a fellow student or a family member to proofread your work and to offer suggestions so you can continue to improve your essay right up until the moment when you hand it in.
Very few students are able to make it through their academic life without writing an essay, but that doesn’t mean they have to be stressful. As long as you know what to look out for, you’re in the perfect place to score a good grade – and remember, you can only do your best. As long as you give it your all, you can be proud of your achievements, no matter what grade you receive in the end.