Don’t let that essay beat you. Our top essay tips will get you on track and churning out essays Harvard students would be proud of.
That essay deadline is looming.
It’s the early hours of the morning, and you’ve still yet to formulate a decent thesis statement, let alone research an argument, find suitable sources, and stick it all together in a coherent form. And then there’s the essay editing to deal with.
Temptations lie everywhere. And all distractions are extremely welcome.
But, as much as you may feel like quitting school for good right now and turning on the television, YOU HAVE GOT THIS!
Okay, maybe not just quite yet… but there are some great tools out there that will certainly make your life easier. In fact, some of them may even make writing and editing an essay a little bit of fun.
Here are 18 great ideas that could well help you increase your grades without the blood, sweat, and tears.
You may also wish to check out our ultimate guide to editing an essay.
18 Top Essay Tips That Will Change Your Life
- When performing academic research, use Google Scholar instead of the standard Google search engine. You’ll get much more relevant results that will impress even the pickiest professor.
- Can’t think of the right words to get your point across? Visit Word Hippo to find the words you’re looking for. It’s a nifty little tool that you can use to find definitions, synonyms, antonyms, and translations for words.
- If you have the opportunity to choose your own topic for a paper, write about something that really gets your goat. This is a top essay writing tip because you’ll be able to rant on and on about something you’re passionate about. Before you know it, you’ll have achieved the word count.
- Compiling the bibliography according to style guide requirements can be a real headache. Let BibMe do it for you.
- If you can’t choose between different variations of the same word or are struggling to decide whether to use a hyphenated or compound adjective, use Google Ngram to find out which usage is more common.
- This is by no means the most groundbreaking essay tip you will read, but it really does work. Once you have finished your essay, take a break. It will help you to see the content with fresh eyes when searching for errors. Try reading the essay introduction immediately followed by the conclusion. Do they tell the story?
- Nail your thesis statement, and you’re halfway there. Take a look at our guide to writing a thesis statement for a fantastic free template.
- Haven’t written enough pages but run out of ideas? Change the font size of all periods from 12 pt to 14 pt. Sneaky tip… but it may just help you meet the page requirement.
- Need continual motivation? Try Written? Kitten! It rewards you with pictures of kittens every 100 words. What more can you ask for?
- Try the Pomodoro method for maximum essay writing efficiency. Take a five-minute break every 25 minutes. Every third break should be 20 minutes long.
- If you’re struggling to organize tons of different ideas, try Coggle. It’s a tremendous mind-mapping tool that will inject a bit of fun into the essay-planning process.
- If you’re having a tough time structuring your essay, list five main points you wish to make and then write a paragraph for each topic. See our guide to essay formatting for more top ideas.
- Once you’ve finished your essay, copy and paste the text into Google Translate and click on the listen icon to hear it read aloud. This truly is a top tip. You’ll have a much better chance of spotting any errors and identifying areas for improvement when you listen to the text being read. See our guide on how to proofread an essay for more great essay proofreading tips.
- Make sure you use effective transitions; they can transform the flow and coherence of your essay. Take a look at our free transitions cheat sheet for some great ideas.
- Rushing to get your essay finished ahead of a deadline? Significantly reduce the time it takes to research relevant articles and papers by only reading the introduction and conclusion of each document. You’ll get the gist of the topics covered in a fraction of the time and can then summarize the main ideas in your own paper.
- Finding it difficult to concentrate? Try Brain, a research-based online application that uses artificial intelligence to identify what music will enhance your focus.
- Create an essay writing checklist to make sure you have covered all the main points. Check out our free printable version here: Essay writing checklist.
- If all else fails… check your lecture notes and simply reword what the professor said in class. He or she will think you’ve understood the material 😉
Need help getting your main points across in your essay? Let our essay editors do it for you.
Of course, spending a lot of time on an essay and meticulously planning it in advance will always result in the best possible grades (and a big pat on the back from your parents).
But everyone strays from the path of perfection every now and again.
If you’re on the last minute, suck it up and get on with it. One advantage of starting your essay the night before is that the whole miserable ordeal will be over so much quicker!