No matter what your major is, you probably have at least one essay to write per semester. For some people, writing an essay can be a daunting task. You may feel like you don’t know enough information, or even if you know what to say, you may not know how to say it. If this sounds like you, here are a few tips to make writing that essay less of a headache!

1. Know what formatting your professor wants

Even if your content is amazing, you can be docked some serious points for a formatting error. Before you begin to craft your content, knowing what formatting to use is key. Check if your professor has a specific formatting they prefer.

2. Plan with your thesis in mind

When planning to write, read the prompt thoroughly and create your thesis. That way you can morph your paper around your thesis. From your thesis, develop your main points. Also, make sure that each paragraph contains a topic sentence and a closing sentence that relates back to your thesis. Once these main points are developed and connected to your thesis, your content should be organized for you.

3. Transitions are your best friend

Not only should your topic and closing sentences relate to your thesis, but they should also connect your ideas as you move through each paragraph. The first sentence of every paragraph should reference the last paragraph and how it relates to the paragraph you’re now introducing.

4. Know your professor’s stance on personal pronouns

For more formal essays, personal pronouns (I, you, we, ect.) are a no-no, but for more informal essays some professors allow it. If you’re not sure, ask your professor what they prefer. However, I always say when in doubt, don’t use them.

5. Avoid basic grammar mistakes

If a professor sees a basic grammar mistake in your paper, your work will automatically seem less credible. My number one rule for grammar, is if you’re not sure, Google it! NEVER just guess.

6. Avoid filler words

People tend to write like they talk, and that can lead to filler words. Filler words have no real meaning and make sentences less clear. Common filler words include “just,” “very,” “really,” “even,” and “that.” I, again, would recommend doing a document search for them and deleting them.

With these tips, you will produce a well-written essay with more ease. Happy writing!

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