Now that you have completed the first draft of your paper, can you say that it is perfectly crafted? The truth is, there is no such thing as an 'A+' paper created on the first draft. Even the most talented writers in the world are editing their writing prior to publishing it. This may sound frustrating since you have already spent so much time on researching and writing the paper, but you still need to give the paper another look.
Are you wondering 'How will I ever edit my paper?'. In order to help you become successful in paper editing, here are a couple of tips that will lead you in the right direction:
1. Draft an Outline
This may sound strange now, but drafting an outline is an important part of the process of editing papers. An outline for your editing process is nothing complex or formal. You can scribble down some sentences, phrases or words or create a graphic organizer – whatever you see to be best. The purpose of this draft is to help guide you when editing your writing.
2. Review the Paper Thesis
The question you need to ask here is: Does my thesis answer the assignment's questions?.
This is one of the key steps when the time comes for you to edit paper. Sure, a thesis may easily change as the research goes, but you must make sure that it somehow fits your original plan.
3. Review the Body Material and Topic Sentence
Considering that you are a college student, you must know that a paper consists of topic sentences and body material. This is the part where you check every paragraph
, look for the topic sentence, and see if the body material fits the thesis. According to the paper writing guidelines, all body material and the topic sentences should relate back to the set thesis.
4. Review the Conclusion
The conclusion of your paper should summarize the points you have set previously. Check your conclusion to see if it does this and avoid adding new information to it. The new information should stay in the body of the paper.
Do not repeat what you said in the paper, though. Use fresh sentences to summarize the key findings of your paper.
5. Check Your Sources
All sources in your paper must be paraphrased and have direct quotations. Wherever you find something you do not know what you should do about, cite it just to be sure. Using plagiarized content is forbidden and if you forget to cite a borrowed text, this is exactly what you are doing.
Do not forget to create a reference list at the end of the paper. You can use tools such as EasyBib for assistance.
6. Check the Grammar and Format
Aside from using grammar and spell checkers, you should always read your paper aloud to see if you missed anything. Look carefully for comma splices, apostrophe usage, number agreement and contractions.
Also, you should always check the format of your paper, just to make sure that it fits the requirements of your professor. In most cases, students are assigned papers that must match a particular style such as APA or MLA.
7. Ask for Help
It is easy to miss a thing, even if you carefully revise your paper. If you wish to find a new pair of eyes to look into your paper, you can always find a good paper editing service
and ask them for help. Most of these services are affordable and aside from being good for your pocket, are very timesaving.
Regardless of how much you research and how well you write, sending out your first draft is never a good idea. If you wish to get the highest grade possible, you should make sure that you edit your paper carefully.