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7 Tips For Writing The Perfect College Paper

by Kaitlyn Wightman
Marketing Specialist

October 31, 2014

It’s that time of the semester when your instructors ask you to write college papers. Before bad habits creep into your study time, remember that a sizable portion of your class grade depends on writing college papers successfully. 

Finish this semester strong by following these seven tips for writing the perfect college paper. 

Tip #1: Start Now

Your instructor wants you to spend the given span of time on developing the paper, whether that’s one week or one month. Break up writing the college paper into attainable steps. Dedicate your study session to a goal that further develops your college paper, from crafting your thesis statement and researching to the actual writing of the college paper. 

Tip #2: Answer The Question

There’s a reason your instructor chose the question for you to answer. The question is designed for you to apply what you’ve learned so far this semester as well as further your understanding of the subject. Instead of answering the question you want to answer or think should be asked, answer the question that is being asked when writing your college paper. 

Tip #3: Excel At Expectations

Know the criteria that you are to meet when writing the college paper. Review the syllabus and ask your instructor clarifying questions so that you understand the expectations. If the college paper is supposed to be up to eight pages, aim to write eight pages. 

Tip #4: Redefine Your Audience

Instead of writing the college paper for your instructor, imagine that your reader is someone not taking the class. Don’t assume that your reader knows the answer or thinks that the answer is obvious. Explain your supporting evidence fully and clearly. 

Tip #5: Stick To Your Thesis

Writing a strong college paper means only discussing one main point. All supporting evidence should work together in your college paper to support the main idea addressed in the opening paragraphs. This makes it easier for your readers to follow your argument and claims. 

Tip #6: Establish A Quote Quota

Unless specified by your instructor, don’t dress your paper with elaborate quotes. Your instructor wants to see your understanding of the material, not how a professional understands it. Only use quotes that enforce your main point. 

Tip #7: Make Your Conclusion Shine

Write a firm conclusion at the end of your college paper. This is where you take a stand, but find a balance. Don’t be shy and let the audience come to their own conclusion, however don’t be too opinionated that your reader feels alienated. Confidence in your conclusion can go a long way. 

Still struggling with writing your college paper? Schedule an appointment with your college's online tutoring center or your local writing center to receive the guidance you need.

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