Back to College: 8 Writing Tips and Tools for Your Academic Year
  • 5-minute read
  • 2nd September 2022

Back to College: 8 Writing Tips and Tools for Your Academic Year

It’s that exciting time of year again when students are heading back to school! Whether you’re entering your first year of college or nearing graduation, there are many resources out there to help ensure your academic success.

We’ve put together a list of tips along with some free and inexpensive tools that can help you with your focus, writing, studying, and everything in between! Check out our guide below to learn more.

1. Use Citations Correctly

All students need to learn how to use reference styles in their academic work to distinguish between their own original ideas and those that are someone else’s. Some styles can be quite complex, especially when working on a large research project.

BibMe helps you create in-text citations and reference list entries in some of the most commonly used styles (APA, MLA, and Chicago). It also provides helpful guides to explain how each style is used and the most up-to-date guidelines.

The paid version of this tool can also check your writing for plagiarism and highlight where citations might be missing.

2. Keep Notes and Research Organized

Taking notes and conducting research are also fundamental to a college student’s academic experience. Memonic is a tool that allows you to keep it all organized in one place.

You can clip specific sections of web content, save pages for reading later, capture screenshots, and take notes and then organize your content collections according to each assignment or course.

Your collections can easily be synced across your mobile and desktop devices, shared with your peers, and transferred into compact printouts.

3. Plan and Collaborate on Projects

Mind mapping is another useful and effective writing and studying strategy. Not only can you brainstorm and organize your ideas, but you can also retain complex information using this visualization tool.

Bubbl.us is great for creating mind maps, as you can also use it to collaborate in real-time with your peers and to share, present, and print your maps and notes.

The interface is simple and straightforward to help you stay focused and work quickly.

4. Stay Focused and Increase Productivity

Staying focused and productive is crucial to achieving academic success. In a world that is increasingly digitally driven, it can be difficult to avoid distractions (such as social media, shopping, videos, and games) when you should be writing or studying. Check out Freedom’s data on just how much time and productivity we lose to these distractions!

Freedom is an app and website blocker that allows you to sync distraction-free periods across all of your devices. You can create an impromptu session or schedule one ahead of time, so you’re never wasting time.

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5. Read More Efficiently

NaturalReader is another tool to help you study effectively and efficiently. When you have reading assignments for multiple courses, you can use this text-to-speech tool to upload text and documents and then hear them read back to you.

This is also a great tool for English language learners. Not only can you use the pronunciation tools to help you improve your speech and vocabulary, but you can also upload and listen to your own writing to ensure it sounds and flows the way you want it to.

6. Master the English Language

Translation tools can also be essential for ESL students when working to understand and master the complexities of the language. Having these tools at your fingertips can help you comprehend lectures and readings and also ensure you’re accurately conveying your own ideas in your writing.

iTranslate offers a series of translation and communication apps to help you read, write, and speak in more than 100 different languages.

You can access text-to-voice translations, save frequently used words and phrases, look up verb conjugations, and even use your phone’s camera to get translations of anything you see.

7. Create Clear and Concise Writing

The research, planning, and writing processes can be intensive, so it’s important to find tools that can help ensure that your final document is excellent.

The Hemingway Editor identifies errors that affect the readability of your writing. Using a simple color-coded system, the platform highlights overly complex or confusing sentences, passive voice, and adverbs or phrases that might weaken your writing.

You can also find an overall readability grade, word count (broken down by letters, characters, words, sentences, and paragraphs), and the read time of your document.

Although the Hemingway Editor does not provide a complete grammar check, it can be a useful tool for improving academic writing.

8. Have Your Writing Professionally Proofread

In addition to ensuring that your writing is clear and concise, it’s also important to check for spelling, grammar, and referencing style errors. It can be difficult and time-consuming to catch errors in your own writing, so using a professional proofreading service is a great option for improving your work.

Our Proofed editors have expertise in many subject areas and can work with most document formats and referencing styles to help you achieve success regardless of the project you’re working on.

We also have a next-day guarantee – and the option to upgrade to a 12- or 3-hour turnaround – so that you never miss a deadline and 24-hour support to address any questions or concerns about your order. Upload a free trial document today to learn more about how we can be your partner in academic success!

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