How to Improve Your Academic Writing Skills: 5 Proven Ways

July 24, 2017
High-quality writing is the cornerstone of professional development and each student needs to perfect those skills to become relevant in academic circles. It’s not a freestyle activity and it demands hard work, a lot of practice and learning.No wonder that people sometimes say that getting a college degree without strong writing skills is like winning the gold medal in the Olympics without training. Although it may sound too difficult in the beginning, there are some practical methods to improve your academic writing. In this article, we will explain the 5 best models.

The Basics of Academic Writing

academic writing

Writing plays a key role in academic activities but it’s not only limited to this field. Almost all companies and organizations use professional statements and scientific papers to prove the credibility of their operations. The ways in which academic writing can assist various industries are basically countless. For that reason, it’s important for you to improve your skills. Here are the ways how to do it.

  • Make a plan

You don’t start writing academic essays or dissertations without a comprehensive plan. You need to create an outline with these main sections:

  • Introduction: In the first part, you make a brief presentation of your topic, basic ideas, and methodology.
  • Body: This is the crucial section of your work. Use it to explain the background of the subject, your hypothesis, research, and results.
  • Conclusion: Final remarks serve to inform your readers once again about the entire work. You quickly lead them one more time from the beginning to the end of your research.

Of course, there are many other elements to add here but they depend on the nature and field of your work. Luckily enough, many renowned courses and online tutorials can give you additional suggestions and more detailed explanations.

  • Background research

It’s hard to imagine a single field of research in which people haven’t already made huge volumes of academic papers. Your task in that regard is to conduct a thorough research before writing your own essay because you don’t want to repeat old or obsolete statements. Try to explore all of the most relevant studies and theories in the given field.

Once you’ve done that, you are ready to start writing your paper. What you need to do is come up with unique statements based on your observations and previous works. Whenever you use other works to support your claims, pay attention not to plagiarize and put references where needed. However, don’t over-quote in your essay. It will make your work look like a recapitulation of the existing theories.

  • Provide arguments

Gone are the days (or should we say centuries) when you could let your imagination flourish and write whatever sounds fresh and exciting. Science doesn’t accept this type of writing anymore and you have to provide substantial evidence to support the hypothesis.

The progress of mankind is based on innovations, which is why new ideas are more than welcome. But none of these ideas could be approved without the proof. Therefore, you need to give empirical confirmation for your premise.

  • Writing style

Academic writing is not the belletristic kind of work. It follows strict rules and procedures instead. Therefore, you are expected to use a specific style and vocabulary. There’s no room for colloquial speech or patois. You need to respect the readers and keep in mind that they are probably highly educated individuals.

If you are not familiar with this style, you need to practice and improve it. In the meantime, you can always find a tutor or ask for professional help from organizations such as Essay Geeks. But you’ll certainly need to adopt this style of writing eventually.

  • Edit and proofread

Once the writing part is completed, you need to go through your paper again and again. Editing is often as important as the writing itself. You can spot serious omissions while editing or detect some parts that you can improve and make much better.

At the same time, you have to proofread your essay or dissertation. People make typos all the time but mistakes in academic writing look terrible. It doesn’t only suggest that you were too lazy to proofread. It can also make the readers think that your entire work is sloppy. In case you don’t have enough time or patience to do it yourself, there are great online tools like Grammarly to help you deal with it.


Academic writing is an extremely useful skill and if you are having trouble honing it, don’t give up. There are many proven ways to make it much better in a relatively short period of time. Our 5 tips make the perfect starting point, so don’t hesitate to use them!

The article was provided by
Chris Richardson
Devoted writer, journalist, and blogger