Hints on how to become a better term paper writer

The best advice is plan, plan, plan.

First step is to make sure that you have read the instructions, then read and read them again. Make a note of the details such as submission date, word count and referencing format. Make sure that you look at any instructions that relate to the topic of your term paper.

Now the hard work starts.

  1. Have a look at some examples of term papers. Try to find examples of a poor paper, an average paper and an outstanding paper. Make a note of the criteria that makes each grade.
  2. Unless you think that you already have a great idea for a topic, start by picking out a few areas of your course that you may like to choose for your topic. Brain storm some ideas.
  3. Once you think that you have your topic. Decide what background reading you need to do. What sources do you need and what references will you use?
  4. Start to think about the facts that you need to present and what order you will be putting them in. Check your order and if needed shuffle your ideas until they follow a logical sequence. Don't confuse your reader.
  5. Now start looking at the sections of your paper. Divide the work that you already have (whether it is in note form or citations) into the sections.

At this point you will probably be ready to start writing the outline of your paper.

  1. Think about your audience. Think beyond your tutor, and the other students in your class.
  2. Go back to basics. Basics include, sentence and paragraph structure. Remember that each paragraph should have a topic sentence, a body and a concluding sentence. The concluding paragraph should lead on to the topic sentence in the next paragraph.
  3. Keep in mind the purpose of the term paper. You need to report on your topic, add any additional information that you have gathered through your independent research and how it relates to your topic.
  4. Be aware of your style of writing. You should have a good idea of what is 'good writing' through your initial research into term papers.
  5. What ever you do, do not attempt to write in a style that you do not normally use. If you try to adopt a style that is inconsistent with your own, your writing will not flow as well as it normally would. Also be aware of the language you use, language that is not familiar to you may result in a cumbersome piece of writing that may not flow well despite all your planning and organization.