Some students find writing a horrible task, mostly because they don’t know where to start and fail to organize properly. Experts at a leading writing service have provided some practical tips to help improve your grades.
Review Instructions Carefully
All academic work and tests come with precise instructions and grading rubrics. Failure to follow instructions is likely the leading cause of unneccesary grade reductions — not poor writing itself.
Instructions will differ from one paper to the other. They will capture the kind of formatting required, language to be used, length of your paper, and reference materials to be used, among others. If the paper fails to meet these standards, your score will be low. In case instructions provided are not clear, you are required to seek clarification before starting. Commencing work following the wrong instructions will only lead to failure.
PRO TIP: use the grading rubric and instructions as a checklist which you mark off once your paper meets each requirement.
Plan things out
Develop a plan that captures your introduction, body, and conclusion of the paper. Planning involves creating an outline for the task ahead. The outline should capture the order of points or ideas, materials to refer, and different sections based on the expected structure of your paper, among other writing elements.
An outline or plan ensures that you do not repeat any idea and thus render some of the sections of your work redundant. You also have an overview of the ideas you have to discuss in the paper. The plan alerts you in case you miss the point.
Look at Writing Samples
Gather quality samples of the type of paper you are writing and use them as reference points. Sample papers on just about any topic are available online, but ensure they are good quality — poor quality samples may affect your performance.
A word of warning: DO NOT COPY SAMPLES WORD FOR WORD! This is called plaigiarism and is a serious offense in school. Your work must be your own.
Set aside distractions
Create an environment where you can work without disruption or disturbance. The library is one of the best places to work on any paper because you are forced to focus on what you are doing.
If you prefer to work at home, switch off anything which distracts you, such as the television, radio, or cell phone. Some people do well with something on in the background, but others cannot handle it — which sort of student are you?
Use Quality Reference Materials
The strength of the ideas you discuss in the paper will depend on the quality of reference materials you’re using. Look for high-quality reference materials from different sources, including the library, reputable websites and academic databases. Your teacher will usually recommend reliable reference materials to help you. Using inferior references, such as Wikipedia, usually leads to rejected papers or failing grades.
Plan your work and time in a way that allows you to meet the submission deadline. Failure to meet the deadline comes with penalties, some of which are punitive. Thus, develop a schedule that will enable you to complete the paper before the deadline to provide enough time for editing.
Edit Your Work
Spare some time at the end of your drafting stage to edit the paper. Editing helps to eliminate little errors that are overlooked the first time you write something. If you are doubtful of your editing skills, get a friend or tutor to help (or even a parent).
PRO TIP: Finish your draft, then don’t look at your paper for several hours before you edit. This will help you look at your work with a fresh set of eyes.
Some instructions or topics will be difficult to handle, no matter how much you try. You are allowed to seek help from different places to avoid compromising on your grades and performance. This help should come from a person who understands the topic and will not mislead you.
Consult your teacher regularly in the course of writing. Most teachers relish the chance to assist you whenever you are stuck, and this shows you are a motivated student. Your teacher knows what he or she is looking for from the assignment, and is therefore one of the best sources of writing help with your school work.
Also, there are professional writing assistants who are trained in different areas and ready to offer tips and examples whenever it is required. You have to pay for their help, but they should NOT write your entire paper for you — that is cheating!