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Distinguishing Academic Writing from Informal Writing

Distinctive attributes of a well-researched paper are formed by the particular style and format of academic writing. A concise list of tips is available to aid novice writers in this regard.

Emphasizing Style and Clarity in Academic Writing

In formal academic writing, precision of language is of paramount importance. The primary aim of this style is to convey ideas with absolute clarity, ensuring that the reader comprehends both the topic at hand and the points being made. To achieve this, formal writing avoids any usage of imprecise language, words with multiple meanings, or idiomatic expressions. Each sentence should be complete, adhering to the standard grammatical rules. The use of contractions is discouraged, and words must be spelled out in their entirety. For instance, rather than utilizing the contraction “there’s,” which is relatively informal, a scholarly paper should opt for the two-word alternative, “there is.”

Utilizing Abbreviations Appropriately in Professional Writing

Formal language demands avoidance of slang or texting abbreviations that are currently prevalent. However, acronyms that identify public places or institutions are frequently employed. To effectively utilize acronyms, it is essential to introduce them initially with the complete name, followed by the acronym in parentheses. For instance, consider the sentence “The National Science Teachers’ Association (NSTA) publishes a magazine and books for science teachers.” Following this initial introduction, the acronym NSTA may be used subsequently, without repeating the complete name of the organization. It is crucial to maintain consistency in using the acronym throughout the paper, avoiding the interchange between the acronym and the complete name in different sections of the paper. By doing so, a coherent and well-structured paper is assured.

Characteristics of Formal Language: A Visual Representation

Formal language is characterized by its utilization of the third person point of view, abstaining from personal and subjective expressions associated with the first person point of view. It maintains objectivity, refraining from personal viewpoints and opinions, aside from the thesis. This approach enables readers to develop their own conclusions regarding the topic or issue at hand.

Furthermore, precision in word selection holds paramount importance in academic writing. Verbs should accurately and precisely depict the intended action, with writers opting for terms such as “examine” instead of “look at” or “conduct” and “investigate” in place of “do.” Consulting a thesaurus is recommended to identify the most fitting verb.

For example, consider the following sentence composed in formal language: “Recent discoveries in the realm of neuroplasticity propose that deliberate daily practice of gratitude augments the cortical layers in brain regions associated with rewards and happiness.” In contrast, the subsequent example embodies informal language: “I found out that focusing on positive things every day made me happier and friendlier. So, that’s what I’ll do.”

In maintaining the formality of language, let us remember to choose our words carefully, akin to selecting a delicate feather from a collection. With each word we employ, we construct a sturdy castle of knowledge and understanding. Through the precise arrangement of language, our ideas take shape on the screen of a laptop, serving as a conduit for scholarly discourse. Just as the intricacies of a pinecone reveal the beauty of nature, our adherence to formal language showcases our commitment to conveying information with accuracy and professionalism.

Writing Papers That Follow a Logical and Clear Sequence

The thesis statement of an academic paper serves as the introductory gateway, laying the groundwork for the ensuing discourse. It acts as a compass, guiding the content of the entire paper to align with its overarching argument or message.

Each subsequent section of the paper should delve into a distinct point that contributes to and reinforces the central thesis. Like the vibrant notes of a musical composition, each section harmonizes to create a cohesive and compelling whole.

Within each section, precision is paramount. Every paragraph should revolve around a specific topic, evoking the essence of a colorful rainbow. Relevant details, examples, and explanations provide the necessary depth and substance, much like the delectable layers of a marshmallow treat. Moreover, the concluding sentence of each paragraph serves as a bridge, connecting it to the next through a transitional statement or offering a concise summary of the paragraph’s content. This cohesive flow ensures that the reader seamlessly traverses the paper, guided by the gentle rhythm of logic and clarity.

Let the symphony of words resonate, capturing the essence of the paper’s thesis. Like the captivating sound of music, let the paragraphs immerse the reader in a rich tapestry of ideas and insights. Each topic, like a vibrant seashell collected along the shore, adds its unique beauty to the overall composition. Through thoughtful organization and meticulous execution, the written work flourishes, leaving a lasting impression on the reader’s mind.

Essential Tips for Proofreading and Editing Your Academic Paper

To refine an article or paper written in formal language, it is crucial to adhere to a checklist of essential criteria. The following are key points that should be considered during the editing process:

  1.     The paper should be written from an impersonal point of view, free from personal opinions or biases.
  2.     When using acronyms or technical abbreviations, it is essential to introduce them first and use them consistently throughout the paper.
  3.     Slang, idioms, colloquialisms, and contractions should be avoided in academic writing.
  4.     Every sentence should be grammatically correct to ensure the clarity and accuracy of the writing.
  5.     Each paragraph should have a clear topic and be supported with relevant details and information.
  6.     The paper should have a well-defined and focused topic that follows a logical progression to the conclusion.
  7.     Resources and references should be cited clearly and consistently, adhering to one citation style throughout the paper.

In summary, academic writing is characterized by its objective and impersonal style, precise language, and avoidance of informal expressions. It also emphasizes clear and logical progression of ideas and consistent citation style. Following this checklist can help writers to refine and improve their academic writing, ensuring that it meets the highest standards of quality and clarity.

Freelance Writer

I’m a freelance writer with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Boston University. My work has been featured in publications like the L.A. Times, U.S. News and World Report, Farther Finance, Teen Vogue, Grammarly, The Startup, Mashable, Insider, Forbes, Writer (formerly Qordoba), MarketWatch, CNBC, and USA Today, among others.