Editing your assignment
Editing your work
Always plan time to read over what you have written before you submit it.
You should give yourself enough time to review your essay a day or so after you finish writing with a fresh eye. Then you will see any errors and make improvements.
Some strategies to help...
- Check your grammar and punctuation. You should use a spell-checker AND your own eyes just to double check.
- Proof read your writing in hard copy. Sometimes when you proof read on the screen, your eyes substitute the correct form and you miss many typos.
- Read your work aloud! This can help you to hear how the writing sounds - what sounds good and what doesn't.
- Check your referencing format consistency and the fine detail of your references, even if you're using a program like Endnote.
|Understood the topic
- Answered what the question is asking you to do?
|Abstract (if required)
- Stated the problem or the question that you've addressed?
- Provided your answer (your "thesis")?
- Outlined your scope, focus, method and sources?
- Identified your main reasons for your answer / main findings of your research
- Stated your conclusion (with implications, if any)?
- Set the context?
- Narrowed the focus?
- Stated a summary of your argument in a thesis statement?
- Provided an overview of your writing?
- Defined key terms?
In each paragraph
- Given a summary sentence (topic sentence) which is clearly related to the thesis statement?
- Ensured each paragraph develops one idea (not a mixture), and have you developed it fully?
- Developed each point with explanation and/or evidence from the reading?
- Used too many short paragraphs? Could you merge some by making categories with a topic sentence that link to the thesis statement?
- Do any paragraphs need deleting?
- Are the verb tenses appropriate?
Argument and evidence
- Repeated key terms/concepts through the text?
- Linked ideas between paragraphs?
- Used a lot of "and" connectors - could you change some of them to give more variety?
- Made generalisations which need to be more tentative?
- Provided evidence to support your arguments?
- Summarised/paraphrased the views of other in your own words, then referenced them in the text?
- Summarised the major point of the essay?
- Given the reader a clear understanding of the argument you have pursued?
- Checked the referencing style suggested in the subject guide?
- Used enough references?
- Used paraphrasing appropriately (not copied out sections of the texts you have read)?
- Put all direct quotations in inverted commas?
- Varied the way you refer to sources?
- Provided a reference list in alphabetical order and referencing format?
|Presentation & Formatting
- Checked with your subject outline for these requirements?
- Included a cover sheet with all the information filled out, including writing the question you have answered out in full?
- Double spaced your writing?
- Used appropriate margins?
- Used size 12 font?
- Indicated where a new paragraph begins either by line spacing or indentation?
The University of Wisconsin also has an excellent site for editing work with 12 common errors and useful resources.