9 Simple and Effective Ways to Improve Academic Writing Style

by Julie Clements Promoter
Most students struggle with academic writing. University transcription services ease this challenging task by ensuring accurate transcripts of audio and video recordings of interviews and events conducted as part of students’ research work. The success of academic writing depends on how effectively you communicate your concepts and ideas. Academic writing is different from other kinds of writing as it is based on the research that you do and is meant for a specific audience that is interested in your subject.  It has a formal tone and generally includes technical terms and jargon. The University of Sydney lists four main types of academic writing: descriptive, analytical, persuasive and critical. Each has specific language features and purposes, and may need to use more than one of these types in your paper.

Here are nine simple ways to improve your academic writing skills:

  • Devote time to reading: Most good writers read a lot. Reading will expand your knowledge and improve your vocabulary. It will help you learn how influential writers get their ideas across to readers.  However, you need to develop your own way of writing and avoid emulating any specific style.
  • Read relevant material: Read up on your subject matter or read to learn. Subject matter reading involves gaining knowledge in your area of research through content that will help you with your work. Collect as many references as you can and cite them effectively in your work. The goal should be to gain, demonstrate and create knowledge in subject matter. Doing your homework will help you produce well-written informative academic papers.
  • Practice writing: When you read, you understand the art of writing better. The next step is to practice writing. Focus on developing skills in grammar, spelling, and punctuation, and most important, building discipline. Practice using intelligent, descriptive and appealing words. Attending a writing course is a good idea.
  • Learn to write concisely: Avoid wordiness. Many students make the mistake of trying to stuff their paper with all the available information on the subject. This can take away from clarity and confuse readers. The key is to avoiding wordiness is to achieve the right balance between content and length. Adding unnecessary information and sounding verbose may make it look like you don’t know your subject (
  • Use short sentences: Avoid writing long, wordy sentences. Use short sentences and clear concise language to get to the point. Your paper must be formal, but easy to read and understand. You should also focus on using active voice. Both active and passive voice can be used in academic writing, though active voice is preferred. The passive voice is generally used when you wish to focus on the person or thing acted on. Here is an example that provides to illustrate this: 

Active: In 1921, researchers at the University of Toronto discovered insulin. It is still the only treatment available for diabetes.

Passive: Insulin was first discovered in 1921 by researchers at the University of Toronto. It is still the only treatment available for diabetes.
In this context, passive voice is preferable as insulin is the main topic of discussion.

  • Organize your ideas: The best way to organize your ideas systematically is to prepare an outline before you get down to your actual writing. Plan how you are going to present your thoughts -- ideas must flow logically from one to the other. This will also help you ensure that you have the content for your paper.
  • Don’t lose focus: Stick to your topic. Make sure that the introduction includes the main points of your paper in the first paragraph. Every sentence you write should focus on the specific issue at hand. Take care not to wander off as this will detract attention from the main argument. 
  • Use jargon wisely: Using jargon is necessary in academic writing when you are writing for a professional audience or applying for research funding that is decided by peer review. Jargon has stylistic value and will be appreciated by specialized audiences. However, as University Affairs recommends, it should be used sparingly when addressing a wider audience or people outside your subfield. 
  • Proofread your work several times: After you complete your writing, start editing and proofreading. Make sure that your work follows the rules laid down by your university. Proper editing can remove wordiness. Check for errors such as misspellings, grammatical mistakes, and punctuation as well as for any plagiarism.

Affordable transcription services are available to support students with the academic endeavours. With the support of an experienced university transcription service provider, students can focus on improving their academic writing style and producing valuable research papers.

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About Julie Clements Freshman   Promoter

7 connections, 0 recommendations, 42 honor points.
Joined APSense since, September 4th, 2012, From Tulsa, United States.

Created on Feb 29th 2020 03:18. Viewed 526 times.


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