Ten Steps for Editing a Paper Successfully
When you start thinking about editing your paper, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind? A lot of people usually consider essay or research paper editing to be a simple process that includes only fixing spelling and grammar errors. Nevertheless, editing a paper is much more. It is a complex process that entails revising the paper content, grammar, structure, as well as presentation of your piece of writing. The main goal of editing is to make sure that all your ideas and thoughts are presented to the readers as clearly as only possible. Thus, if you don’t know how to edit papers, and need useful tips, strategies and guidelines, read on to find out how experts can help you.
Every student should realize that it is basically impossible to get an A grade after composing a draft. Students will have to take several steps to make their piece of writing perfect. Think about it. You have obviously spent days of hard work researching, reading, and writing the paper itself. For sure, you do not have much time and strength left to be spent on polishing the paper. However, if you are planning to attend a cocktail party, you will definitely take care of all the elements – shoes, hairstyle, clothing, etc. The same rule must be applied to academic writing. The truth is obvious. You will have to look at your paper one more time before submission. Do not submit a draft, even if you think that it is well-written.
If you are a high school student or an undergraduate pursuing an online degree or traditional campus program, you will have to write, revise and rewrite papers. Achieving good grades is closely interrelated with editing and revising. However, if you don't know how to edit an essay or find it difficult to spot mistakes in your own writing, using reliable paper editing services will help you come up with an impeccable work.
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Several Steps That Will Help You Successfully Manage the Process of Editing a Paper
Finding ways to continuously improve can be difficult, but one method that can instantly enhance your essays is effective editing. Taking the time to edit your essay before submitting it can make the difference between receiving a good grade and an outstanding one. Therefore, to ensure that the structure and wording of your paper are as strong as possible, you can follow the procedure provided below.
Create an Outline
Even if you were not asked to write an outline, it is obligatory to create it, even if you have already produced an essay. No matter what topic you explored (easy or complex), you will not get a good grade if you did not manage to cover professor’s instructions and went off the track. It may be challenging to identify flaws of writing without creating an outline. Take a break and put your paper aside. Then, create an outline and check if you really talk about the relevant aspects or not. For instance, you have to write about environmental protection, but after creating an outline, you notice that some paragraphs are actually off topic because they outline social inequality and other issues.
Do not think that you will have to write a formal outline that most professors ask to submit before working on the project. You should write a small plan, sketch of your paper either with words, phrases, or sentences that will help you identify if you managed to cover instructions or not.
Check Your Thesis Statement
Does your thesis statement correlate with the task file? Even if you have submitted your thesis for approval, do not think that it cannot be changed. Sometimes students slightly deviate from the topic and explore the topic from a different angle. There is no need to panic, if you see that your thesis needs improvement. Unless your professor did not allow you to change the thesis, you can alter it during the writing stage or when editing takes place. It is good that you eventually noticed a mismatch between your thesis statement and the rest of the text. Therefore, make sure that your thesis fits within the context of the explored topic.
Have a Closer Look at Topic Sentences
Every main body paragraph should begin with a topic sentence that directly relates to the thesis statement. Review your topic sentences and check if they are logically connected with the key idea placed at the end of the introductory paragraph.
For example, if you have a topic of “student life,” you will definitely not appreciate reading a thesis statement “student life is full of different activities.” The reader is bound to pose questions in his/her mind and require clarifications. For this reason, your thesis statement should sound like this: “A typical life of a college student is closely associated with studying, attending multiple courses/extracurricular activities, and socializing with their classmates.”
The same rule refers to topic sentences. Every topic sentence must be a logical continuation of one point of your thesis statement. For example, your first topic sentence should speak about “studying,” the second one “attending multiple courses/extracurricular activities,” and the last one “socializing with their classmates.” Your topic sentences should include a deeper explanation of each point presented in the thesis statement.
Check Your Conclusion
Do not introduce any new information in conclusion. It is the last paragraph of your essay that must summarize the key details from the main body. Moreover, always be formal and clear in your writing. Even if you are a high school student, you should not write in a way “This is what I discussed.” You should summarize the same ideas explored before, but with fresh words.
For instance, if you have to summarize an essay about academic writing, you can end your paper like this “A successful writer will always have to take several steps: create an outline, work on drafts and revisions, rewrite unnecessary parts, and edit the paper till perfection.”
Do not present any new citations in your concluding paragraph. Moreover, always leave a sense of completion and closure, so that the reader will not doubt the credibility and validity of the research.
Properly Cite All Sources
Almost every academic assignment should include a list of references used during writing. If you paraphrase information or present a direct quote, you must include a citation at the end of the sentence and reflect the source in a reference list. Always carefully follow the rules of the assigned citation style while referencing (MLA, APA, Harvard, Turabian, etc.). Do not be reluctant to open some samples and check how formatting should look like. Remember that non-cited sentences can lead to a plagiarism record in your student profile. Therefore, always check if every borrowed idea gives a credit to the original source, from which you got the information.
Correct Grammar Mistakes
It is obligatory to edit your paper for possible grammar mistakes. Students usually overlook this step, but even a few grammar mistakes can lead to a grade reduction. These are the list of most common grammar mistakes:
- Contractions (do not use them in academic writing)
- Possessive case (if it is a matter of possession, always use an apostrophe)
- Noun-verb agreement
- Run-on sentences
- Number agreement.
Correct All Formatting Mistakes
There are different citation styles and in most cases, professors assign specific formatting requirements. Make sure that your paper is formatted appropriately.
Re-read Your Paper One More Time
Take a small break and get back to your paper in a while. It will help you get distracted and perceive information afresh. It is preferable to read your paper out loud. If you want to make a pause in some sentences, it means that you missed some commas. If you stop reading and start contemplating, it implies that some ideas are unclear and should be revised.
Do not submit your draft as the final paper. Even if you consider yourself to be an experienced writer, do not be too optimist about final results. Even if you managed to create a good first draft, it does not mean that your professor will think the same way. Human beings tend to make mistakes. Therefore, you should create a habit of revising your papers and editing them before submission. This will allow you to forget about the B and C grades, and help you get A grades in every subject.
Useful Tips on Editing a Paper
The editing of one’s written work is an integral part of the process of writing a paper. Even though a paper may contain some wonderful ideas, these will not come across well to the reader if the paper is disorganized and laden with technical mistakes. If your readers are to be able to see and understand your ideas clearly, your writing will need to be fine-tuned until it is not only perfect in terms of content but also in the technical sense. Below are some great tips to help you be on the right track when editing your own writing.
Important Points for Consideration
What You Should Do
What You Should Not Do
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Rely on Online Writing Services
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