How to be brief in your academic writing

A professor could have a hundred essays that they need to thumb through and grade before they even get to yours. Being brief and concise in your academic writing will not only save your time, it will save your teacher’s. There are many reasons to get right to your point, and to keep to your point, but the main reason is because your professor will not want to read through fluff. So, how do you accomplish keeping your writing brief?

Know What Your Point Is

If you don’t know what your point is, your writing will show it. A vague essay will equal a lot of fluff, and you will end up writing statements that are irrelevant. This is just a waste of your time. Know what your point is, write a concise thesis and make sure that your topic sentences align with your main topic.

Structure Is Everything

A solid outline will help you to keep your essay on point and ensure that you will be off track with your writing. The better the outline, and more concise your essay will be, because you will not waver. Make sure that your topic sentences relate to your thesis and try to keep your evidence narrowed to two or three supporting facts.

Avoid Fluffy Words

Adjectives and adverbs are rarely used in journalism, and the reason is because they just take up space. Most of the time, descriptive words just take up space. If you want to keep your essay concise and brief, use fewer descriptive words. Also, avoid metaphors because you end up having to explain them, rather than just writing the main point directly.

Keep Quotations Simple

If you are citing a source of information, or utilizing a quote from another person, don’t write a whole paragraph. Use four or five key words from their quote or paraphrase. Many times, individuals will use long quotes to ensure that they meet the minimum word count, but most times, a teacher will not look past the fifth word.

If you want to make your essay more readable, use more paragraphs and keep to two or three supporting points. The longer the paragraph the more likely that you are rambling and getting off track from your main point. Keep your statements simple and avoid using fluffy words just to meet your word count. By creating an effective outline, you will be saving yourself and your teacher a lot of time because you will be able to write a brief and concise essay.

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