How to Write an Academic Essay

Using precise language and precise punctuation is crucial for scholars. They use commas, periods, and semi-colons deliberately, and avoid using exclamation points, which come off as unsophisticated and overly excited. Dashes, hyphens, and other punctuation marks should be limited to explanatory comments and compound phrases, and semi-colons should be used instead of periods for a longer pause.

Formatting your references

One of the most important parts of an academic essay is the reference page. This page should follow certain rules for all types of references. First of all, the heading should not be in bold, italicized, or underlined. Reference entries should be double-spaced and listed in alphabetical order by author’s last name. If there are several authors, use the last name of the first author. The indentation should be at least half an inch.

The reference section of an essay may be one page long for a short research paper and several pages for a professional journal article. Here’s detailed information on how to format your references. You’ll learn basic referencing guidelines and how to format bibliographical entries for various types of sources. Listed below are some examples of the styles of references that you should adhere to. It’s important to remember that not every situation calls for the same style guide.

Using the active voice

Using the active voice when writing an academic paper is the preferred method of presenting your thoughts and ideas. It helps to make your ideas and thoughts clearer and easier to understand. It’s also more effective for academic papers. Many teachers prefer it because it makes arguments and ideas more confident and concise. Here are some examples of times when you should use it. But which is the best type of academic writing? Which style is right for your needs?

Also Read: What Is the Proper MLA Formatting for an Epigraph That Appears in an Academic Essay?

When using the active voice, you put the person who performed the action at the beginning of the sentence. This makes the reader feel that the action is coming from the person. The passive voice, on the other hand, puts the object of the action first and places the person doing the action last. In academic writing, the passive voice is acceptable, but not always preferred. You can try to change it in your essay by changing the wording.

Using the passive voice

Many academic papers and scientific journal articles use the passive voice construction. However, using it solely will confuse your readers and make your paper difficult to understand. Passive voice emphasizes the person or entity that takes the action rather than the subject. The APA recommends using active voice construction. It will also make your sentences clearer and easier to read. Make sure to use the passive voice only if it is the most natural and most appropriate style for the assignment.

When you are unsure about the use of the passive voice, you can substitute the word “the” with the word “a” or “an”. You can also replace the “a” with an ‘o’ with a ‘c’ to make your sentence sound more authoritative. It is also recommended to start each sentence with the name of an author or reference to ensure that the reader knows the source.

Using evidence-based reasoning

Using evidence-based reasoning when writing an educational essay is a key aspect of research-based essay writing. Evidence comes from multiple sources, including print sources, journals, and websites. To learn how to evaluate different sources, visit the library’s guide to using evidence-based reasoning. You can also ask the librarians for assistance. They are located at the Davis Reference Desk, the Undergraduate Library, and online through their IM screen names.

Various types of evidence are acceptable in an academic essay, depending on the topic and discipline. Some subjects, such as the arts, make use of subjective arguments, while others rely on quantitative, qualitative, or empirical data. In a literature paper, evidence might come from literary critics’ quotes, while a lab report might draw from data collected during experiments. However, the evidence you use will depend on your audience and discipline.

Avoiding obscure language

While there are certain situations in which the use of obscure language is appropriate, academic writing requires careful attention to detail. Although it’s tempting to use big words to appear intelligent and educated, these over-compensating words only reduce the clarity of the written text. If you’re unsure about which words to use, consult a thesaurus to make the process of selecting the correct words easier. Here are some examples of common mistakes you should avoid when writing academic essays:

Avoid using ‘I’. While avoiding ‘I’ in academic writing does not mean that you should never express an opinion or evaluation, it does mean that you shouldn’t use personal pronouns. Instead, use logical argumentation and evidence to convey your opinion. Keep in mind that academic writing is much more formal than other types of writing, so you’ll want to avoid using the word ‘you’.

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