Whether you are writing an essay for your college application or an important position, chances are that there’s a lot at stake. According to Handy, while essays seem simple, you need to consider a lot of things that shouldn’t be ignored. Here are a few things you should and shouldn’t do in essay writing:
1. Be precise – People often make the mistake of covering a subject widely. This results in an essay that’s all over the place and too vague or generic. You need to plan out your essay so that you have a clear structure and know where you need to start and finish. The topic of the essay also hints on what recruiters or administrators may want from you. The essay is your opportunity to answer their doubts and questions. Hence, you need to be specific with your planning and make sure that you stick to the thesis statement.
2. Quote and Proofread – When you write an essay you may be inspired by some brilliant ideas and published work of other people. It is important to quote your work and give references to where it’s important. That’s a fine line and when you cross over it may be regarded as plagiarism. Read up on how to reference or quote your work and you can also use the numerous plagiarisms checking tools online to stay safe.
Proofreading is also equally important and helps you to figure out the readability of your essay. Even if you are in a rush you shouldn’t skip on proofreading your essay. Allow others to go through your essay and use the feedback to clean off any confusing parts in your essay. It also helps you get rid of clumsy mistakes in grammar, spelling, and punctuation. You don’t want to leave those minor mistakes in your essay. That leaves a poor impression on the reader.
1. Don’t try to sound too academic – When you are writing an essay for your college application it is obvious that you want to sound refined and knowledgeable with big words and complicated sentences. However, that has an opposite effect on the administrators. When readers have to go through sentences more than twice, they won’t add the extra effort since there are hundreds or probably thousands of applications that need to be reviewed. If you need to follow the correct terminology, that’s fine. That gets you points. In general, try to keep your essay less wordy and with fewer complications.
2. Don’t use slangs – Creative writing often involves the use of English that is forbidden in other fields but perfectly explains a point in a simple way. However, that isn’t acceptable in academic writing. It can also push down the rank of your application. Avoid abbreviated words as well.
Handy suggests that you consider these things when you write your essay. You don’t want to damage the reputation of your essay due to an avoidable mistake or unintended plagiarism.