Writing academic term papers, among other papers, is a common practice in colleges and universities. Professors give students such papers to evaluate their understanding of specific concepts. It can be a challenging task for students who haven’t mastered writing such academic papers. However, even the pros make some common mistakes that affect their grades. Tutors check for several points in the paper. It is not always about how strong the facts are but also the structure and grammar. So, what are these common errors, and how can a student rectify them? Read below.
- Grammar and Misspells
Incorrect spellings and poor grammar usage happen when students are rushing to beat the deadline. They do not have adequate time to go through the work and submit a raw file without editing. The chances are that the paper will have countless errors you didn’t notice when writing. To avoid such mistakes, ensure you plan your work well so that you have time to proofread the paper. Avoid procrastinating working on the paper once you get the topic. Never underestimate a subject, even if it seems an easy one.
You can as well use software used for checking some errors like Grammarly to note some hidden mistakes. Again, embrace the art of reading the sentences aloud, and you correct any mistakes.
Another great way to handle grammar and misspells is to give your paper to another person to read for you. This way, they will realize the mistakes quicker than you could.
Note: Your professor doesn’t have adequate time to keep correcting your paper. They have other activities to accomplish. Be careful not to lose any scores because of poor grammar and misspells.
- Poorly structured sentences
In most cases, students write informal sentences. They put down the wordings according to how they speak. Learn to keep the sentences short and avoid complex phrases. If you aren’t sure of a given the word, do not use it in a sentence. It can end up hanging the entire meaning. Besides, the teachers have other work to check, so they can’t spend more time on a single paper trying to evaluate the implications of some phrases from the dictionary.
- Common Word Errors
There are some mistakes that even software like Grammarly can’t identify. When you put them wrongly in a sentence, they will also change the meaning, thus giving the entire paper a different direction. You should distinguish such phrases to bring out the desired sense when you use them in a paper. Examples of such words include a lot and a lot, allright and all right, it’s and its after all and afterall, you are, and you’re, among others. You can only note such errors when you proofread your work or give someone else to read on your behalf.
- Using the Quotes and Sources
Some students use other people’s work without including the quotes or giving the credits. From an academic angle, using another person’s work without giving credit is the same as copying. i.e., plagiarism. No institution can tolerate plagiarism and when you deliver plagiarized work, be sure to face the music. Some professors can even suspend you from the college.
To avoid such mistakes, check all your sources and quote the phrases you took from another person’s work. Let the reader understand where you got the information from. All the facts, quotes, findings that aren’t your own words should have proper references. Most teachers will ask you to cite your work either in MLA, APA, Chicago, or any other format.
- Inappropriate punctuation
Some of the punctuation that confuse writers are the use of commas and semicolons. You must understand how to use comma splice, run-on sentences and don’t need to include a comma. The way to correct such mistakes is to read through your paper, bearing in mind the comma and semicolon rules.