Top Six Essential Essay Writing Skills

When writing an essay or any piece of writing it benefits the writer to follow a few simple guidelines. These guidelines are not necessarily the laws of writing, but they will help students to complete their assigned essays to the highest possible caliber.

1. Make Sure That You Understand The Question

Without understanding the topic it's unlikely that you'll get anywhere fast. In most cases a student is given a week or two to complete an essay or assignment. This should give you a full day, or two, to ask questions and confirm that you understand the essay question.

2. Create A Timetable Or Calendar Based On The Deadline For The Essay

You will need time to gather your research, time to structure your essay, time to write it and edit it. You will also need time to rest and a healthy diet. Without rest, perhaps a little outdoor activity and a balanced diet, your brain and body aren't able to absorb information or concentrate. Create a calendar, one that you feel entirely comfortable with, that allows you to meet specific goals in a certain time frame with the essay's deadline in mind.

3. Find Relevant Research Material

Attempting to write an essay without enough research material is a waste of time. Searching for relevant research material will be the key to writing an essay filled with valuable points. You don't want to approach your desk and have to wade your way through books and loose papers to find what you're looking for. Be specific when choosing your research material. Writing an essay is a lot easier when you know the information required.

4. Create A Structure For Your Essay

Instead of jotting down notes here and there which may make little sense to you at the end of the day, it's best to create a structure for your essay. Know the information you want and where you want it in your essay. Your essay will need a short introduction describing the topic of the essay question. The body of the text will need to flow and shouldn't jump from one point to another. The conclusion should be a short explanation of the topic you have written about and your findings.

5. Working In A Distraction-Free Zone

You will need to be sure that each point in your essay is valuable. You will have to search for these points within your research material and in order to find the best points you will need to concentrate. You must work in an environment that is free from distractions. This means:
  • No phone calls.
  • No television.
  • Leaving a 'do not disturb' sign on your door.
  • Making sure that you are not hungry or thirsty.
  • Making sure you have nothing else on your mind.

6. Proofread Your Final Text

Finally, read through your final essay thoroughly at least twice before you submit it to make sure there are no dramatic errors. Taking a look at a few essay examples can also help you to compare your own work.


Quote of the Day

"A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops"
(Henry Brooks Adams)