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How to write better essays: improve your style.

You may find your essay perfect but typically professors find what should be revised or amended. Very often the ideas provided in the student’s papers are brilliant but they cannot be presented well because of poor writing. Our article will highlight some issues that students can face when writing the essay and ways to solve them. Here you can check some tips on improving your writing style.

Rule 1. Use active voice for verbs.

  • A verb is a core of every sentence, thus, you should choose as strong and precise of them as possible.
  • Try to use active voice as it will mean the subject performs the action while in the sentences with passive voice subject is a recipient of the action.
  • If you see that your paper contains too many sentences in passive you can try to convert them. Here is a brief instruction: find a by phrase, which usually indicates the performer of the action in the sentence with the passive voice. Rewrite the sentence in the way that the words, which follow “by” becomes a subject.  In case the subject is not explicated you can use a general term.
  • Nevertheless, there are situations when you really need to use passive voice. For instance, it is necessary for:

-          emphasizing the action rather than the doer of it;

-          not naming the performed of action (for ethic or tactful purposes);

-          writing about the situation when the actor is not known;

-          keeping a subject and focus consistent;

-          establishing authoritative tone.

Rule 2. Putting action in verbs. 

  • All the action of the sentence should be concentrated in the verb. Try not to blur it in the sentence and avoid unnecessary nominalization (turning verbs into nouns, e.g.  “develop – development; evaluate – evaluation”).

Rule  3. Be concise.

  • You should do you best in order to put much sense in few words. This is beneficial for you as a writer who saves his efforts for reader who can receive a meaningful message in a short phrase.
  • To make your writing briefer you can substitute wordy and sophisticated phrases to shorter and simpler ones. In this case you should consider verbal phrases ( “to have knowledge” and “ to be aware” means the same as “to know”, for example) and complex conjunctions (“despite the fact”, “regardless the fact” are equal to “although” and “even”).
  • Try to avoid expletive constructions such as “it is…”, “there is…” and “there are…”.

Rule 4. Be precise.

  • Preciseness is an essential feature of writing as your main purpose is to communicate with the reader effectively, thus, he or she should get exactly what you mean.
  • For efficient writing we recommend you to avoid abstract terms and vague nouns, such as “situation”, “aspect’, “degree”, “area” and so on. Sometimes you may really need them, especially, when you are working on thesis or research paper. However, the essay is much briefer type of writing and requires more concrete terms.
  • Do not write with too complicated and inflated phrases. Simple words will work for your essay as well.
  • If complex or technical term is necessary for your paper make sure that you provide a definition for it.

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