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Paper writing tips

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Kimberly Berns

on 30 June 2011

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Transcript of Paper writing tips

Quick and helpful tips! Ways to assist with writing papers & self-editing Prewriting Brainstorming Develop a list of topics/thoughts
(free write/brainstorm!-DO NOT WORRY ABOUT grammar, spelling, or format ) Click for examples
Assess what you feel passionately about
Minimize and narrow your list-Click for examples
Make a list of necessary questions and answer them-Click for examples
Summarize your entire thought/paper in a few sentences
(The same process is possible for paragraph topics) Questions to help narrow:
Which topics provide a significant amount of information?
Which topics would relate well together?
Does the topic allow for the necessary guidelines?
If contrasting is needed can you do that? Questions:
What is my purpose/main point?
Who am I writing to (professor, specialists, students, families, etc) ?
What is my thesis-argument/stance on the topic? Outline Make a tree, diagram, or drawing to show your main points
Make a list of main topics
Add subpoints/subtopics to each of your main topics/focuses
Try to use this as a guide when you write your paper-each main topic starts as a tentative new paragraph
Group the items together that belong with one another (also a good idea for sources) Resources: Writing process- brainstorming, outlines, transitions, etc. (Owl Purdue)http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/679/1/
Tips for writing different academic departments (George Washington University Library): http://libguides.gwu.edu/content.php?pid=56080&sid=410497
Note Taking http://www.academictips.org/acad/atipsforwritingresearchpaper.html 10 tips for writing a paper #1 Write don't edit! Do not worry about the grammar or structure, simply write. You can always improve later Ammann, L. (2008). The blood red pencil: Ten tips for self-editing. Retrieved from http://bloodredpencil.blogspot.com/2008/09/ten-tips-for-self-editing.html #2 Provide break time Before beginning to edit your paper, allow time away from it, whether it is a few hours or a week. #3 Look at the big picture! When first reading your paper do not look at the small grammar errors; instead focus on the overall concepts and organization of your paper. Try a reverse outline and ask yourself: "Have you included everything you intended and nothing that isn’t needed? Does it make sense? Is it organized in a logical way? Does the text flow smoothly or is it jerky?" #4 Quick glance! Once you are happy with #3 and simply reading over it, look for any quick grammar, punctuation, or spelling errors. #5 Are there commonalities? As you are reading your paper for #4, also watch for repetitious words, phrases transitions, or grammar & spelling errors. If you are aware of these and watch for them, you are less likely to repeat the errors on your next papers. #6 Words! Look through your paper for strange words or awkward word usage. Ask yourself: "Could you have chosen a stronger verb or written a better description? Are there superfluous words that can be eliminated to strengthen the writing? Can you revise sentences or paragraphs to make them clearer or more interesting?" #7 Proofread Look over your paper for any grammar, spelling, or punctuation errors. Be as picky as you can #8 Leave it alone If you have time, set your paper aside again and then go back to edit and check the format. #9 Read outloud Read your paper outloud to yourself or others-try reading it backwards sentence to sentence. If you do not have time for all of these steps, read your paper outloud during #3, #4, or #7 #10 Get another opinion Once you are happy with your paper, ask someone else to look at it for you. You want an unbiased opinion of someone who knows English and can help! Note Taking As you read:
Write down on seperate note cards the important information you come across as you read articles-Click for an example
Organize the notecards based on each main topic
Write out a primary notecard for each main topic to help with organization (place notecards that fall under that topic underneath)-Click for an example
For each notecard include the citation on the bottom and pg number Tree Diagram Essay Diagram You can use the same format as paragraphs 2 and 3 to create a new paragraph or main point Organized thoughts Random Brainstorming Lists Organize Notes From developing a paper to self editing
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