A short guide to academic article writing

If you had been accepted by a college you know that you will face a number of years of academic article writing. There will be articles, essays or dissertations, even a major thesis, you will be required to produce in order to obtain your qualification. There are fundamental rules which when mastered will give you expertise and ease in all your writing endeavours. Make the task as easy physically and mentally as possible by following these basic principles.

  1. get the topic right
  2. learn how to be an expert researcher
  3. take and keep notes the right way
  4. planning is everything
  5. style is obviously important
  6. know the formula
  7. become an expert proof reader

The choice of topic is so, so important. The more comfortable you are with the topic you have chosen for your academic article writing, the easier it will be for you to research and write it and, the better will be the quality of your work.

Research is a vital component of all academic article writing. The better you are at locating the right material quickly, the better you will be at the actual article writing. Talk to others about their research behavior. How do they find sources? How do they know which parts of the resource to retain? Develop your skill as a researcher.

Once you find material which is relevant to your academic article writing, you need to be a keep records of what you have found. So learn how to take notes and certainly learn how to record and store them. The better you are at storing and retrieving your notes, the better your writing will be.

Never jump straight in. Plan your article writing. Think about the plan. Think about the progress you wish to make in tackling the topic and lay out the plan in writing before you start the actual writing.

Think about style. Writing is not simply a matter of putting words on paper. Of course you need to develop the article the right way but you also need to do so with style. You need to make your writing come alive.

Is there a formula? Nearly all academic article writing will stick to some form of layout or formula. Learn this layout. Follow this layout.

And of course once you have finished your research, your planning and your writing, you need to check your work. You need to become an expert at proofreading, not just at finding mistakes and correcting them but at reading your work with an eagle eye so that it improves in style and the flow of your work is natural and easy to read.