Essay writing is a skill that holds various steps to complete. Proofreading is time-consuming and a little bit difficult too. This is because students have to find grammatical and punctuation mistakes from their own work. Besides, it is crucial to check the sentence structure of the essay to make sure that an essay is logical and understandable for the readers.
This article is especially for the students who don’t know how to perfectly proofread their essays before final submission. The following strategies need to be followed to make your essay perfect and free from mistakes.
Recheck Essay and Read Aloud
Before starting the first step of proofreading just take a break. Yes, you read it right. Do not start proofreading just after completing your essay. Take a break for half an hour or leave your essay for one day if you have enough time. It will help you to check your essay with fresh eyes. When I had to write my essay, I always preferred to keep rechecking and reading aloud, so that I could find out the errors that were made while writing.
Now comes to the first point that is rechecking of the essay. You have to be sure that your essay has fulfilled all the requirements of the instructor. Otherwise proofreading or editing is worthless as you are going to lose marks anyway. Read all instructions to check whether the essay is just according to the instructions.
Next, you have to read aloud your content. Don’t rush and keep your focus on each word so you can notice all writing issues easily. Reading silently sometimes leads to mind absence. Hence, don’t feel awkward, and read it loudly to remain attentive.
You can take help from your teacher or friends. You can read in front of them so that they can point out mistakes while you are reading. Otherwise, you can print your essay and give it to your friend to highlight mistakes for you. It is significant because it becomes difficult for students to find out their own mistakes even after rechecking it several times.
An essay writer can take help from different applications as well. For instance, Grammarly app is useful to check grammar and punctuation mistakes. It also helps to improve sentence structure.
Use SWAPS Method
This is the most effective method to check all writing mistakes from the essay. It consists of five main steps.
- S- Sentence structure: Check sentences to make sure that all sentences are relevant to the topic. Avoid lengthy sentences and correct sentence fragments as well.
- W- Word usage: Word selection is crucial in an essay. You cannot use informal language or slang words when the topic of the essay is serious or crucial. However, you can use informal language in creative topics. Therefore, use correct words and avoid overuse of pronouns.
- A-Agreement: It means you have to check subjects, verbs, and tenses. Tenses should be correctly used and make sure the verbs/subjects agree in number.
- P-Punctuation: Punctuation throughout your essay should be correctly used. Remove unnecessary commas or any other punctuation symbols. Check whether the flow of sentences is not wrong due to wrong use of punctuation.
- S-Spelling: Correct all spelling errors in your essay. Also, check the capitalization of words. You have to start a sentence with a capital letter and have to capitalize proper nouns. For possessives and contractions, always use apostrophes.
It is recommended that start reading from the end instead of staring. It is because when you read inflow, there remain the chances of missing mistakes. On the other hand, when you start reading from the end you become able to remain attentive and present-minded. It is a helpful strategy to make your essay excellent for submission.