8.4 Revising and Editing
Revising and editing are the two tasks you undertake to significantly improve your essay. Both are very important elements of the writing process. You may think that a completed first draft means little improvement is needed. However, even experienced writers need to improve their drafts and rely on peers during revising and editing. You may know that athletes miss catches, fumble balls, or overshoot goals. Dancers forget steps, turn too slowly, or miss beats. For both athletes and dancers, the more they practice, the stronger their performance will become. Web designers seek better images, a more clever design, or a more appealing background for their web pages. Writing has the same capacity to profit from improvement and revision.
Understanding the Purpose of Revising and Editing
Revising and editing allow you to examine two important aspects of your writing separately, so that you can give each task your undivided attention.
- When you revise , you take a second look at your ideas. You might add, cut, move, or change information in order to make your ideas clearer, more accurate, more interesting, or more convincing.
- When you edit , you take a second look at how you expressed your ideas. You add or change words. You fix any problems in grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure. You improve your writing style. You make your essay into a polished, mature piece of writing, the end product of your best efforts.
How do you get the best out of your revisions and editing? Here are some strategies that writers have developed to look at their first drafts from a fresh perspective. Try them over the course of this semester; then keep using the ones that bring results.
- Take a break. You are proud of what you wrote, but you might be too close to it to make changes. Set aside your writing for a few hours or even a day until you can look at it objectively.
- Ask someone you trust for feedback and constructive criticism.
- Pretend you are one of your readers. Are you satisfied or dissatisfied? Why?
- Use the resources that your college provides. Find out where your school’s writing lab is located and ask about the assistance they provide online and in person.
Many people hear the words critic, critical, and criticism and pick up only negative vibes that provoke feelings that make them blush, grumble, or shout. However, as a writer and a thinker, you need to learn to be critical of yourself in a positive way and have high expectations for your work. You also need to train your eye and trust your ability to fix what needs fixing. For this, you need to teach yourself where to look.
Creating Unity and Coherence
Following your outline closely offers you a reasonable guarantee that your writing will stay on purpose and not drift away from the controlling idea. However, when writers are rushed, are tired, or cannot find the right words, their writing may become less than they want it to be. Their writing may no longer be clear and concise, and they may be adding information that is not needed to develop the main idea.
When a piece of writing has unity , all the ideas in each paragraph and in the entire essay clearly belong and are arranged in an order that makes logical sense. When the writing has coherence , the ideas flow smoothly. The wording clearly indicates how one idea leads to another within a paragraph and from paragraph to paragraph.
Reading your writing aloud will often help you find problems with unity and coherence. Listen for the clarity and flow of your ideas. Identify places where you find yourself confused, and write a note to yourself about possible fixes.
Sometimes writers get caught up in the moment and cannot resist a good digression. Even though you might enjoy such detours when you chat with friends, unplanned digressions usually harm a piece of writing.
Mariah stayed close to her outline when she drafted the three body paragraphs of her essay she tentatively titled “Digital Technology: The Newest and the Best at What Price?” But a recent shopping trip for an HDTV upset her enough that she digressed from the main topic of her third paragraph and included comments about the sales staff at the electronics store she visited. When she revised her essay, she deleted the off-topic sentences that affected the unity of the paragraph.
Read the following paragraph twice, the first time without Mariah’s changes, and the second time with them.
Nothing is more confusing to me than choosing among televisions. It confuses lots of people who want a new high-definition digital television (HDTV) with a large screen to watch sports and DVDs on. You could listen to the guys in the electronics store, but word has it they know little more than you do. They want to sell what they have in stock, not what best fits your needs. You face decisions you never had to make with the old, bulky picture-tube televisions. Screen resolution means the number of horizontal scan lines the screen can show. This resolution is often 1080p, or full HD, or 768p. The trouble is that if you have a smaller screen, 32 inches or 37 inches diagonal, you won’t be able to tell the difference with the naked eye. The 1080p televisions cost more, though, so those are what the salespeople want you to buy. They get bigger commissions. The other important decision you face as you walk around the sales floor is whether to get a plasma screen or an LCD screen. Now here the salespeople may finally give you decent info. Plasma flat-panel television screens can be much larger in diameter than their LCD rivals. Plasma screens show truer blacks and can be viewed at a wider angle than current LCD screens. But be careful and tell the salesperson you have budget constraints. Large flat-panel plasma screens are much more expensive than flat-screen LCD models. Don’t let someone make you by more television than you need!
Answer the following two questions about Mariah’s paragraph:
Please share with a classmate and compare your answers.
When you reread your writing to find revisions to make, look for each type of problem in a separate sweep. Read it straight through once to locate any problems with unity. Read it straight through a second time to find problems with coherence. You may follow this same practice during many stages of the writing process.
Writing at Work
Many companies hire copyeditors and proofreaders to help them produce the cleanest possible final drafts of large writing projects. Copyeditors are responsible for suggesting revisions and style changes; proofreaders check documents for any errors in capitalization, spelling, and punctuation that have crept in. Many times, these tasks are done on a freelance basis, with one freelancer working for a variety of clients.
Careful writers use transitions to clarify how the ideas in their sentences and paragraphs are related. These words and phrases help the writing flow smoothly. Adding transitions is not the only way to improve coherence, but they are often useful and give a mature feel to your essays. Table 8.3 “Common Transitional Words and Phrases” groups many common transitions according to their purpose.
Table 8.3 Common Transitional Words and Phrases
|Transitions That Show Sequence or Time|
|as soon as||finally||next|
|at first||first, second, third||soon|
|at last||in the first place||then|
|Transitions That Show Position|
|above||across||at the bottom|
|at the top||behind||below|
|to the left, to the right, to the side||under||where|
|Transitions That Show a Conclusion|
|in the final analysis||therefore||thus|
|Transitions That Continue a Line of Thought|
|because||besides the fact||following this idea further|
|in addition||in the same way||moreover|
|looking further||considering…, it is clear that|
|Transitions That Change a Line of Thought|
|nevertheless||on the contrary||on the other hand|
|Transitions That Show Importance|
|in fact||more important||most important|
|Transitions That Introduce the Final Thoughts in a Paragraph or Essay|
|most of all||least of all||last of all|
|All-Purpose Transitions to Open Paragraphs or to Connect Ideas Inside Paragraphs|
|admittedly||at this point||certainly|
|granted||it is true||generally speaking|
|in general||in this situation||no doubt|
|no one denies||obviously||of course|
|to be sure||undoubtedly||unquestionably|
|Transitions that Introduce Examples|
|for instance||for example|
|Transitions That Clarify the Order of Events or Steps|
|first, second, third||generally, furthermore, finally||in the first place, also, last|
|in the first place, furthermore, finally||in the first place, likewise, lastly|
After Maria revised for unity, she next examined her paragraph about televisions to check for coherence. She looked for places where she needed to add a transition or perhaps reword the text to make the flow of ideas clear. In the version that follows, she has already deleted the sentences that were off topic.
Many writers make their revisions on a printed copy and then transfer them to the version on-screen. They conventionally use a small arrow called a caret (^) to show where to insert an addition or correction.
1. Answer the following questions about Mariah’s revised paragraph.
2. Now return to the first draft of the essay you wrote in Section 8 “Writing Your Own First Draft” and revise it for coherence. Add transition words and phrases where they are needed, and make any other changes that are needed to improve the flow and connection between ideas.
Being Clear and Concise
Some writers are very methodical and painstaking when they write a first draft. Other writers unleash a lot of words in order to get out all that they feel they need to say. Do either of these composing styles match your style? Or is your composing style somewhere in between? No matter which description best fits you, the first draft of almost every piece of writing, no matter its author, can be made clearer and more concise.
If you have a tendency to write too much, you will need to look for unnecessary words. If you have a tendency to be vague or imprecise in your wording, you will need to find specific words to replace any overly general language.
Sometimes writers use too many words when fewer words will appeal more to their audience and better fit their purpose. Here are some common examples of wordiness to look for in your draft. Eliminating wordiness helps all readers, because it makes your ideas clear, direct, and straightforward.
Sentences that begin with There is or There are.
Wordy: There are two major experiments that the Biology Department sponsors.
Revised: The Biology Department sponsors two major experiments.
Sentences with unnecessary modifiers.
Wordy: Two extremely famous and well-known consumer advocates spoke eloquently in favor of the proposed important legislation.
Revised: Two well-known consumer advocates spoke in favor of the proposed legislation.
Sentences with deadwood phrases that add little to the meaning. Be judicious when you use phrases such as in terms of, with a mind to, on the subject of, as to whether or not, more or less, as far as…is concerned, and similar expressions. You can usually find a more straightforward way to state your point.
Wordy: As a world leader in the field of green technology, the company plans to focus its efforts in the area of geothermal energy.
A report as to whether or not to use geysers as an energy source is in the process of preparation.
Revised: As a world leader in green technology, the company plans to focus on geothermal energy.
A report about using geysers as an energy source is in preparation.
Sentences in the passive voice or with forms of the verb to be. Sentences with passive-voice verbs often create confusion, because the subject of the sentence does not perform an action. Sentences are clearer when the subject of the sentence performs the action and is followed by a strong verb. Use strong active-voice verbs in place of forms of to be, which can lead to wordiness. Avoid passive voice when you can.
Wordy: It might perhaps be said that using a GPS device is something that is a benefit to drivers who have a poor sense of direction.
Revised: Using a GPS device benefits drivers who have a poor sense of direction.
Sentences with constructions that can be shortened.
Wordy: The e-book reader, which is a recent invention, may become as commonplace as the cell phone.
My over-sixty uncle bought an e-book reader, and his wife bought an e-book reader, too.
Revised: The e-book reader, a recent invention, may become as commonplace as the cell phone.
My over-sixty uncle and his wife both bought e-book readers.
Now return once more to the first draft of the essay you have been revising. Check it for unnecessary words. Try making your sentences as concise as they can be.
Choosing Specific, Appropriate Words
Most college essays should be written in formal English suitable for an academic situation. Follow these principles to be sure that your word choice is appropriate. For more information about word choice, see Chapter 4 “Working with Words: Which Word Is Right?”.
- Avoid slang. Find alternatives to bummer, kewl, and rad.
- Avoid language that is overly casual. Write about “men and women” rather than “girls and guys” unless you are trying to create a specific effect. A formal tone calls for formal language.
- Avoid contractions. Use do not in place of don’t, I am in place of I’m, have not in place of haven’t, and so on. Contractions are considered casual speech.
- Avoid clichés. Overused expressions such as green with envy, face the music, better late than never, and similar expressions are empty of meaning and may not appeal to your audience.
- Be careful when you use words that sound alike but have different meanings. Some examples are allusion/illusion, complement/compliment, council/counsel, concurrent/consecutive, founder/flounder, and historic/historical. When in doubt, check a dictionary.
- Choose words with the connotations you want. Choosing a word for its connotations is as important in formal essay writing as it is in all kinds of writing. Compare the positive connotations of the word proud and the negative connotations of arrogant and conceited.
- Use specific words rather than overly general words. Find synonyms for thing, people, nice, good, bad, interesting, and other vague words. Or use specific details to make your exact meaning clear.
Now read the revisions Mariah made to make her third paragraph clearer and more concise. She has already incorporated the changes she made to improve unity and coherence.
1. Answer the following questions about Mariah’s revised paragraph:
2. Now return once more to your essay in progress. Read carefully for problems with word choice. Be sure that your draft is written in formal language and that your word choice is specific and appropriate.
Completing a Peer Review
After working so closely with a piece of writing, writers often need to step back and ask for a more objective reader. What writers most need is feedback from readers who can respond only to the words on the page. When they are ready, writers show their drafts to someone they respect and who can give an honest response about its strengths and weaknesses.
You, too, can ask a peer to read your draft when it is ready. After evaluating the feedback and assessing what is most helpful, the reader’s feedback will help you when you revise your draft. This process is called peer review .
You can work with a partner in your class and identify specific ways to strengthen each other’s essays. Although you may be uncomfortable sharing your writing at first, remember that each writer is working toward the same goal: a final draft that fits the audience and the purpose. Maintaining a positive attitude when providing feedback will put you and your partner at ease. The box that follows provides a useful framework for the peer review session.
Questions for Peer Review
Title of essay: ____________________________________________
Writer’s name: ____________________________________________
Peer reviewer’s name: _________________________________________
- This essay is about____________________________________________.
- Your main points in this essay are____________________________________________.
- What I most liked about this essay is____________________________________________.
These three points struck me as your strongest:
These places in your essay are not clear to me:
a. Where: ____________________________________________
Needs improvement because__________________________________________
b. Where: ____________________________________________
Needs improvement because ____________________________________________
c. Where: ____________________________________________
Needs improvement because ____________________________________________
The one additional change you could make that would improve this essay significantly is ____________________________________________.
Writing at Work
One of the reasons why word-processing programs build in a reviewing feature is that workgroups have become a common feature in many businesses. Writing is often collaborative, and the members of a workgroup and their supervisors often critique group members’ work and offer feedback that will lead to a better final product.
Exchange essays with a classmate and complete a peer review of each other’s draft in progress. Remember to give positive feedback and to be courteous and polite in your responses. Focus on providing one positive comment and one question for more information to the author.
Using Feedback Objectively
The purpose of peer feedback is to receive constructive criticism of your essay. Your peer reviewer is your first real audience, and you have the opportunity to learn what confuses and delights a reader so that you can improve your work before sharing the final draft with a wider audience (or your intended audience).
It may not be necessary to incorporate every recommendation your peer reviewer makes. However, if you start to observe a pattern in the responses you receive from peer reviewers, you might want to take that feedback into consideration in future assignments. For example, if you read consistent comments about a need for more research, then you may want to consider including more research in future assignments.
Using Feedback from Multiple Sources
You might get feedback from more than one reader as you share different stages of your revised draft. In this situation, you may receive feedback from readers who do not understand the assignment or who lack your involvement with and enthusiasm for it.
You need to evaluate the responses you receive according to two important criteria:
- Determine if the feedback supports the purpose of the assignment.
- Determine if the suggested revisions are appropriate to the audience.
Then, using these standards, accept or reject revision feedback.
Work with two partners. Go back to Note 8.81 “Exercise 4” in this lesson and compare your responses to Activity A, about Mariah’s paragraph, with your partners’. Recall Mariah’s purpose for writing and her audience. Then, working individually, list where you agree and where you disagree about revision needs.
Editing Your Draft
If you have been incorporating each set of revisions as Mariah has, you have produced multiple drafts of your writing. So far, all your changes have been content changes. Perhaps with the help of peer feedback, you have made sure that you sufficiently supported your ideas. You have checked for problems with unity and coherence. You have examined your essay for word choice, revising to cut unnecessary words and to replace weak wording with specific and appropriate wording.
The next step after revising the content is editing. When you edit, you examine the surface features of your text. You examine your spelling, grammar, usage, and punctuation. You also make sure you use the proper format when creating your finished assignment.
Editing often takes time. Budgeting time into the writing process allows you to complete additional edits after revising. Editing and proofreading your writing helps you create a finished work that represents your best efforts. Here are a few more tips to remember about your readers:
- Readers do not notice correct spelling, but they do notice misspellings.
- Readers look past your sentences to get to your ideas—unless the sentences are awkward, poorly constructed, and frustrating to read.
- Readers notice when every sentence has the same rhythm as every other sentence, with no variety.
- Readers do not cheer when you use there, their, and they’re correctly, but they notice when you do not.
- Readers will notice the care with which you handled your assignment and your attention to detail in the delivery of an error-free document..
The first section of this book offers a useful review of grammar, mechanics, and usage. Use it to help you eliminate major errors in your writing and refine your understanding of the conventions of language. Do not hesitate to ask for help, too, from peer tutors in your academic department or in the college’s writing lab. In the meantime, use the checklist to help you edit your writing.
Editing Your Writing
- Are some sentences actually sentence fragments?
- Are some sentences run-on sentences? How can I correct them?
- Do some sentences need conjunctions between independent clauses?
- Does every verb agree with its subject?
- Is every verb in the correct tense?
- Are tense forms, especially for irregular verbs, written correctly?
- Have I used subject, object, and possessive personal pronouns correctly?
- Have I used who and whom correctly?
- Is the antecedent of every pronoun clear?
- Do all personal pronouns agree with their antecedents?
- Have I used the correct comparative and superlative forms of adjectives and adverbs?
- Is it clear which word a participial phrase modifies, or is it a dangling modifier?
- Are all my sentences simple sentences, or do I vary my sentence structure?
- Have I chosen the best coordinating or subordinating conjunctions to join clauses?
- Have I created long, overpacked sentences that should be shortened for clarity?
- Do I see any mistakes in parallel structure?
- Does every sentence end with the correct end punctuation?
- Can I justify the use of every exclamation point?
- Have I used apostrophes correctly to write all singular and plural possessive forms?
- Have I used quotation marks correctly?
Mechanics and Usage
- Can I find any spelling errors? How can I correct them?
- Have I used capital letters where they are needed?
- Have I written abbreviations, where allowed, correctly?
- Can I find any errors in the use of commonly confused words, such as to/too/two?
Be careful about relying too much on spelling checkers and grammar checkers. A spelling checker cannot recognize that you meant to write principle but wrote principal instead. A grammar checker often queries constructions that are perfectly correct. The program does not understand your meaning; it makes its check against a general set of formulas that might not apply in each instance. If you use a grammar checker, accept the suggestions that make sense, but consider why the suggestions came up.
Proofreading requires patience; it is very easy to read past a mistake. Set your paper aside for at least a few hours, if not a day or more, so your mind will rest. Some professional proofreaders read a text backward so they can concentrate on spelling and punctuation. Another helpful technique is to slowly read a paper aloud, paying attention to every word, letter, and punctuation mark.
If you need additional proofreading help, ask a reliable friend, a classmate, or a peer tutor to make a final pass on your paper to look for anything you missed.
Remember to use proper format when creating your finished assignment. Sometimes an instructor, a department, or a college will require students to follow specific instructions on titles, margins, page numbers, or the location of the writer’s name. These requirements may be more detailed and rigid for research projects and term papers, which often observe the American Psychological Association (APA) or Modern Language Association (MLA) style guides, especially when citations of sources are included.
To ensure the format is correct and follows any specific instructions, make a final check before you submit an assignment.
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While revising an argumentative essay, a writer should ?
While revising an argumentative essay, a writer should make sure each paragraph has a clearly stated point.
It is important to highlight that clearly stated point within each paragraph in an argumentative essay defends the argument and helps provide a strong case.
The argumentative essay is a genre of writing that requires the student to research a topic; collect, generate, and evaluate evidence; and establish a position on the topic in a concise manner.
Argumentative essays aim to convince the reader of the writer’s own opinion.
New questions in History
In Passage 3, how does General Eisenhower develop the claim that “the tide has turned” and the Allied forces will be victorious? O by providing a hist … orical precedent for the attack O by acknowledging the service of the Allied Expeditionary Forces O by outlining the United Nations’ accomplishments against Nazi Germany thus far by providing examples of how Nazi Germany has treated the European people unfairly
Which of the following was a major cause of the 19th-century revolutions in Latin America? A. The split between the Roman Catholic Church and colonial … governments B. The support of the U.S. military in conflicts against Spain and Britain C. The success of revolutions in the United States and France D. The death of Spanish colonial leader Simón Bolívar SUBMIT
I NEED HELP ASP. After becoming the Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama challenged the Hindu belief that: A. souls are reborn in new bodies after death. med … itation is a healthy and important practice. C. society should be organized into strict castes. D. there is only one god who controls all people.
Help! Step 1. Develop some questions that you need to ask yourself about the American Revolution. Step 2. Research the answers to your questions. Step … 3. Write a 3 paragraph report that supports your opinion on this question. Example: The American Revolution was a civil war because. or The American Revolution was not a civil war because. Step 4. Be sure to include the URLs to the sources you used in your research.
3 Read the following passage about President Hoover’s policies. During his 1932 presidential re-election campaign, Republican President Herbert Hoover … spoke out loudly against the New Deal programs proposed by his opponent, Democratic candidate Franklin D. Roosevelt. He claimed that Roosevelt’s attempts to help people through times of poverty and hardship would create an unhealthy dependency on the government. During his time as president, Hoover responded to the Bonus Army’s demand to be paid their bonuses for wartime service early by sending federal troops to attack them and burn their encampments. Many believe these were both factors in Hoover’s loss of the 1932 election to Roosevelt. Which conclusion can you draw from this passage about Hoover’s attitude toward direct federal ald? A He was against direct federal aid to American citizens. B. He was against direct federal aid to help big corporations. C. He supported direct federal aid to help big corporations. D. He supported direct federal aid to American citizens.
A reserve currency is the currency used to price products such as oil or precious metals (gold or silver) that are traded on the global market. It’s a … lso the currency foreign governments use to stockpile wealth and protect their assets. Which of the following is the world’s most important reserve currency, making up more than 64% of all foreign currency reserves in the world? A. the euro B. the Swiss franc C. the British pound D. the US dollar
Select the correct answer. What was the common purpose behind Jefferson Davis’s and Abraham Lincoln’s inaugural addresses? • A. to remind citizens of … their constitutional rights O B. to encourage citizens to maintain peace and unity O C. to share their vision for the future O D. to reveal their enemy’s weaknesses
Quick Answer: What Is The Best Way To Revise The Final Sentence
Which is the best way to revise the final sentence? The transition “as a result” should be added to the beginning of the sentence to sum up the argument in the paragraph. During the revision process, the writer should add to clearly signal the relationship between the writer’s ideas.
When Reiko writes the final sentence of the paragraph what should she add to complete the argument?
A study of over seventy thousand nurses showed that eating fruit and green leafy vegetables resulted in a lower risk of diabetes. When Reiko writes the final sentence of the paragraph, what should she add to complete the argument? Read the paragraph. Volunteering is a good way to gain skills and work experience.
How can the writer revise the introduction to be more effective?
In the given introduction of an argumentative essay the introduction can be made more effective by adding a closing sentence that can rebut the counter claim. This will enable the reader to be convinced that the claim is right.
How can make best revise her conclusion to call her readers action?
How can Makenna best revise her conclusion to call her readers to action? Hospital volunteer work is a great way to serve the community while learning important skills. Go visit your local hospital and see how you can help. Read the counterclaim in an argumentative essay about the need for a community dog park.
What is the purpose of the final sentence?
The supporting sentences after the topic sentence help to develop the main idea. These sentences give specific details related to the topic sentence. A final or concluding sentence often restates or summarizes the main idea of the topic sentence.
What should Giovanna add to the paragraph that would make it a complete argument?
What should Giovanna add to the paragraph that would make it a complete argument? At the end of the paragraph, she should add a link back to the claim.
Which evidence best supports the reason Manjit is writing an argumentative essay?
The correct answer is the following: option A. The evidence that best supports Manjit’s argumentative essay is the one that states that teenagers who are tired are often tardy or fall asleep in class.
What kind of evidence best supports reasons in an argument?
All evidence should be reliable and varied, using personal experiences only when relevant. All evidence should be empirical and scientifically proven in order to be more persuasive.
When rewriting the conclusion of an argumentative essay a writer should include?
The conclusion of an argumentative essay should offer a clear statement about what the essay will discuss. restate the writer’s opinion and supporting evidence. restate counterarguments and explain why they are ineffective. organize the essay’s claim, evidence, and counterclaims.
What kind of evidence should a writer use to support a claim or counterclaim?
Facts, examples, quotations and statistics are the kind of evidence a writer should use to support a claim or counterclaim. Claim is an announcement or declaration of something true/genuine, yet with no proof or verification that would bolster the announcement.
Which topic would prompt an argumentative essay?
A Case for Gender Equity in the Workplace is the topic that would prompt an argumentative essay. An argumentative essay is a type of essay in which arguments about an issue is presented on both sides.
Which statement is supported by the paragraph and reinforces an argument for online learning?
The statement, which is supported by the paragraph and reinforces the argument for online learning is this: ONLINE LEARNING IS GAINING POPULARITY AS AN ALTERNATIVE TO TRADITIONAL CLASSROOM SETTINGS.
Why is the use of pathos more appropriate in Whitman’s poem than in President Lincoln’s speech quizlet?
Why is the use of pathos more appropriate in Whitman’s poem than in President Lincoln’s speech? B. Whitman’s poem is the emotional reaction to the death of Lincoln. Which statement best explains why comparing Lincoln to a ship captain is an appropriate comparison?.
What is a good closing sentence?
A concluding sentence indicates that you are bringing closure to a paragraph. For each paragraph, the reader should be able to identify what your key points are, based on the concluding sentence. Concluding sentences can start out with phrases such as ‘In conclusion,’ ‘Thus,’ and ‘For this reason. ‘Aug 1, 2020.
What should the last sentence of a conclusion be?
A conclusion is the final piece of writing in a research paper, essay, or article that summarizes the entire work. The conclusion paragraph should restate your thesis, summarize the key supporting ideas you discussed throughout the work, and offer your final impression on the central idea.
What are the 3 positions of a topic sentence?
With respect to the topic sentence, it can go in one of three places: (1) at the beginning of the paragraph as a form of deductive order going from your main idea to the supporting sentences; (2) at the ending of the paragraph as a form of inductive order where you begin with your support sentences that lead to the.
What is an effective claim in an argument of essay?
An effective claim in an ‘argumentative essay’ is a true statement that can be proven using ‘facts and cannot be countered’.
Which sentence should Maddie revise to strengthen her rebuttal?
B. I.G. so, the correct answer to what maddie should revise to strengthen her rebuttal is “sentence 1 because it is not supported by evidence”.
Which pre writing steps are part of research for an argumentative essay?
How do you pre write an argumentative essay? Think carefully about what you are going to write. Open your notebook. Collect facts related to your paragraph or essay topic. Write down your own ideas. Find the main idea of your paragraph or essay. Organize your facts and ideas in a way that develops your main idea.
What makes a good claim?
A claim must be arguable but stated as a fact. It must be debatable with inquiry and evidence; it is not a personal opinion or feeling. A claim defines your writing’s goals, direction, and scope. A good claim is specific and asserts a focused argument.
Which evidence best supports the reason teenagers who are tired are often?
Which evidence best supports the reason? Teenagers who are tired are often tardy or fall asleep in class. If students start school later, it could make parents late for work. Students should go to bed earlier so they will not be so tired in the morning.
Which evidence best supports the conclusion that the narrator is telling this story?
Answer: The evidence that best supports the conclusion that the narrator is telling this story with a particular child in mind is “Pau Amma’s babies hate being taken out of their little Pusat Taseks and brought home in pickle-bottles. That is why they nip you with their scissors, and it serves you right!”.
While revising an argumentative essay a writer should quizlet
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How to Revise an Essay and Make It Better Than Ever
Think revising and editing aren’t necessary? Check out this ad:
It looks like the educational software ad writers of this company don’t know the difference between “their” (possessive) and “they’re” (they are).
Would you feel confident purchasing educational software from a company that doesn’t know basic grammar (or perhaps simply doesn’t care enough to proofread its ad)? Probably not.
Why? Because simple typos are generally a result of sloppy work—and that’s what your professor is going to think if you turn in a paper with the same type of errors.
Typos and grammar errors are bad enough, but gaps in the content and logic of your paper are even worse. That means learning how to revise an essay is an essential skill.
So grab a current draft of an essay, and practice these revision strategies to make your essay better than ever!
How to Revise an Essay and Make it Better than Ever
“Reworking, rewriting, removing” by mpclemens, Flickr.com (CC BY 2.0)
Before we dive into the details of how to revise an essay, think about whether you’ll revise a digital copy or a hard copy.
If you revise a digital copy, you might want to save your first draft and make revisions on another copy. This will let you refer to your original ideas if you rewrite. (Just make sure to give the files different names, so you don’t accidentally submit the wrong version to your prof.)
If you revise a hard copy, grab a pen (and maybe a highlighter) to start marking up your pages. It can often be easier to catch typos and other errors when reading a printed copy. A lot of seasoned authors use this method, so don’t automatically dismiss this old-school way of editing before giving it a try.
Now that you’ve decided how you’ll work, here are six revision tips you need to know to revise your diamond-in-the-rough draft into a polished piece of writing perfection.
Revision tip #1: Write and revise on separate days
When you’re writing, every word you type sounds like perfection. If you read your essay the next day, though, you’ll see that every word is far from perfect. You might even have your share of typos and sentences that are barely comprehensible.
Leave yourself enough time to revise. Write one day, and revise the next. You’ll be surprised at what types of errors seem to appear.
If you absolutely don’t have time to wait a full day before you revise, at least wait a few hours.
Think you don’t have the time (or don’t want to take the time) to revise? Consider this: If you don’t spend an extra day or two on revision, your professor will certainly let you know where you should have revised.
My point: Your grade will thank you if you put in the extra effort.
Revision tip #2: Read your paper out loud
“Reading a book” by Karoly Czifra, Flickr.com (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Remember when you were a kid and you followed along with your finger as you read out loud? I bet you may have even paused to sound out words in your favorite book. It helped, didn’t it? Why? Because it helped you comprehend the words, their meaning, and the meaning of the story. You could hear the words being spoken.
While I’m not suggesting that you necessarily need to follow along the page or screen with your finger (but you can if you like), I am suggesting that you read your essay out loud so that you hear how your paper sounds. It’s easier to hear awkward wording and spot typos if you read aloud.
If you have a friend who’s willing to read your paper out loud, recruit him or her to help too. You can sit back, listen to your words, and note where you might need to revise.
Revision tip #3: Check the content of your essay first
When people think of revision, they often think of correcting spelling errors, typos, and other grammatical errors. Though these are all part of the revision process, there’s more to revision than just changing some punctuation or moving around a few words.
You need to look at the content and the development of your paper too.
Make sure you complete your revision of these larger concerns (content and development) before looking for smaller concerns, such as word choice, grammar errors, and typos.
Here’s why: Let’s say you spend 10 minutes working on one sentence that you just can’t seem to get right. You change the wording three times and move the comma twice in an attempt to craft the perfect topic sentence for your paragraph.
If you spend all that time writing one sentence, what happens if you then revise the content of your essay and end up cutting the entire paragraph because it doesn’t support your argument?
Yep, you wasted 10 minutes on one sentence. That 10 minutes would have been better spent working on your key arguments, rather than working on punctuation and wording.
Questions to ask
Not sure what you should be looking for when you revise content? Here’s a list of questions to ask yourself:
- Did you complete the assignment correctly? If you were supposed to write a compare and contrast essay, for instance, and your paper is actually an argument essay, you’ll have quite a bit of revision to do.
- Is your topic appropriately narrowed? For example, if you’re writing a four-page essay and you picked a ginormous and complex topic like climate change, you’ll definitely need to narrow the scope of your essay.
- Does your introduction effectively introduce your topic and essay? Does it include an attention grabber that makes your audience want to keep reading?
- Is your thesis statement clear and specific? Does it inform readers of the focus of your paper?
- Have you developed and defined key arguments to support your thesis? Are the arguments supported with sufficient evidence? (To check whether your paper is supported effectively, try a reverse outline.)
- Does your paper achieve its intended purpose? For instance, if you’re writing a persuasive essay, will your arguments actually persuade the reader? (Need help with being more persuasive? Check out Ethos, Pathos, Logos: Be More Persuasive in Your Next Essay.)
- Does your conclusion effectively wrap up your paper?
Revision tip #4: Consider style
Once you’ve revised the content of your paper, consider style.
You may not initially think writing style is important, but it plays a crucial role in the overall impression your writing will make on the reader.
Writing style is kinda like your own personal style. Whether you consider your style artsy, preppy, bohemian, casual, or punk, the clothes and hairstyle you choose say a lot about the message you put out to the world.
In writing, elements such as tone, voice, or redundancy can say a lot about the message you’re sending to the reader.
Here are a few things to look for as you review the style of your essay:
- Make sure you’re writing in the correct voice. Are you allowed to write in first person? Should you write in third person? (Third person is usually preferred in academic essays.)
of your paper. If you’re writing an academic essay, don’t use slang and jargon. They’re too informal. Instead, use academic voice. For instance, you could replace “back in the day” with “previously” or “in recent years.”
- Watch out for word repetition and unnecessary redundancy. If you’re writing about the death penalty, it can be easy to write the term “death penalty” over and over again simply because it’s the topic of your paper. To avoid such repetition, try using synonyms, such as capital punishment, execution, or legalized killing.
You might also consider a thesaurus, but use it cautiously. Even though the words might have similar meanings, they likely have different connotations.
For example, if you look up the word “quiet” in a thesaurus, you’ll see the word “speechless” as a synonym. Clearly, these two words don’t mean quite the same thing and can’t always be used interchangeably.
Revision tip #5: Edit for grammar, spelling, and typos
Now that you have the content and style in place, it’s finally time to look at those smaller issues—grammar, spelling, proper word choice, and typos.
Learn how to avoid these types of errors (and how to correct them) by reading these posts:
And even though I know you have spell check, don’t rely on it.
Of course spell check knows if words are spelled correctly, but sometimes spell check misses things or autocorrects to something it shouldn’t. For example, if you spell “definitely” wrong, spell check might change it to “defiantly.” This is definitely not what you want!
Checklist in a minute
I know the five strategies I’ve included so far are a lot to remember, so for quick reference, I’ve created this checklist that summarizes the revision strategies I’ve included in this post. To recap, here they are again:
- Write and revise on separate days. Set aside your draft, and return to it in a day or two to begin the revision process.
- Read your essay out loud. By reading your essay aloud, you can hear errors and identify places where you might need to clarify or reword ideas.
- Check the content of your essay first. Before you check grammar, check to see whether you’ve met assignment guidelines, created a strong thesis, developed and supported your arguments, and created an effective conclusion.
- Check the style of your paper. Look for correct point of view, proper wording, and appropriate tone.
- Edit for grammar, spelling, and typos.
I’ve also created a printable revision checklist for you so that you’ll always remember how to revise an essay to make it better than ever. Just pop it open, and click File > Make a copy to snag your own copy to print out and mark up as you revise your next paper.
The Final Revision
“Racers cross finish line in 5K run for Navy Chief birthday” by Official U.S. Navy Page, Flickr.com (CC BY 2.0)
Even after all this effort, sometimes it’s not enough to revise your own work.
While arguments might make sense in your own mind, they might not be as clear to others. Sometimes, you can even miss small grammar and wording errors because your mind reads what you meant to say, not what you actually typed.
And thus, the last strategy to use when revising an essay…
Revision tip #6: Have someone else read your writing
Having others look at your work means they see it from a new perspective. They’re reading as your audience, not as the writer, so they’ll see and understand things differently.
In some English courses, you’ll have the opportunity to have your classmates read your work. If you’re not in an English course, you might have another friend (hopefully one who is good at writing) read your paper. You might also visit your school’s writing center.
Of course, it’s always a smart idea to have a professional editor review your work even when you know how to revise an essay. And for that, you’re in the right place: the editors at Kibin can not only provide you with expert feedback and help with the revision process but can also help you become a better writer along the way.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published on February 1, 2017, but has been expanded to include fresh advice and additional resources.
Psst. 98% of Kibin users report better grades! Get inspiration from over 500,000 example essays.
About the Author
Susan M. Inez is a professor of English and writing goddess based out of the Northeast. In addition to a BA in English Education, an MA in Composition, and an MS in Education, Susan has 20 years of experience teaching courses on composition, writing in the professions, literature, and more. She also served as co-director of a campus writing center for 2 years.
How to Write an Argumentative Essay | Examples & Tips
Published on July 24, 2020 by Jack Caulfield. Revised on December 6, 2021.
An argumentative essay expresses an extended argument for a particular thesis statement. The author takes a clearly defined stance on their subject and builds up an evidence-based case for it.
Argumentative essays are by far the most common type of essay to write at university.
Table of contents
- When do you write an argumentative essay?
- Approaches to argumentative essays
- Introducing your argument
- The body: Developing your argument
- Concluding your argument
- Frequently asked questions about argumentative essays
When do you write an argumentative essay?
You might be assigned an argumentative essay as a writing exercise in high school or in a composition class. The prompt will often ask you to argue for one of two positions, and may include terms like “argue” or “argument.” It will frequently take the form of a question.
Example: Two-sided argumentative essay prompt Has the rise of the internet had a net positive or negative impact on education? Support your argument with evidence.
The prompt may also be more open-ended in terms of the possible arguments you could make.
Example: Open argumentative essay prompt What is the greatest challenge facing young people today?
Argumentative writing at college level
At university, the vast majority of essays or papers you write will involve some form of argumentation. For example, both rhetorical analysis and literary analysis essays involve making arguments about texts.
In this context, you won’t necessarily be told to write an argumentative essay—but making an evidence-based argument is an essential goal of most academic writing, and this should be your default approach unless you’re told otherwise.
Examples of argumentative essay prompts
At a university level, all the prompts below imply an argumentative essay as the appropriate response.
Your research should lead you to develop a specific position on the topic. The essay then argues for that position and aims to convince the reader by presenting your evidence, evaluation and analysis.
Discuss the effects of globalization on the economy of Nigeria.
- Don’t just list all the effects you can think of.
- Do develop a focused argument about the overall effect and why it matters, backed up by evidence from sources.
- Don’t just provide a selection of data on the measures’ effectiveness.
- Do build up your own argument about which kinds of measures have been most or least effective, and why.
- Don’t just analyze a random selection of doppelgänger characters.
- Do form an argument about specific texts, comparing and contrasting how they express their thematic concerns through doppelgänger characters.
Approaches to argumentative essays
An argumentative essay should be objective in its approach; your arguments should rely on logic and evidence, not on exaggeration or appeals to emotion.
There are many possible approaches to argumentative essays, but there are two common models that can help you start outlining your arguments: The Toulmin model and the Rogerian model.
The Toulmin model consists of four steps, which may be repeated as many times as necessary for the argument:
- Make a claim
- Provide the grounds (evidence) for the claim
- Explain the warrant (how the grounds support the claim)
- Discuss possible rebuttals to the claim, identifying the limits of the argument and showing that you have considered alternative perspectives
The Toulmin model is a common approach in academic essays. You don’t have to use these specific terms (grounds, warrants, rebuttals), but establishing a clear connection between your claims and the evidence supporting them is crucial in an argumentative essay.
Say you’re making an argument about the effectiveness of workplace anti-discrimination measures. You might:
- Claim that unconscious bias training does not have the desired results, and resources would be better spent on other approaches
- Cite data to support your claim
- Explain how the data indicates that the method is ineffective
- Anticipate objections to your claim based on other data, indicating whether these objections are valid, and if not, why not.
The Rogerian model also consists of four steps you might repeat throughout your essay:
- Discuss what the opposing position gets right and why people might hold this position
- Highlight the problems with this position
- Present your own position, showing how it addresses these problems
- Suggest a possible compromise—what elements of your position would proponents of the opposing position benefit from adopting?
This model builds up a clear picture of both sides of an argument and seeks a compromise. It is particularly useful when people tend to disagree strongly on the issue discussed, allowing you to approach opposing arguments in good faith.
Say you want to argue that the internet has had a positive impact on education. You might:
- Acknowledge that students rely too much on websites like Wikipedia
- Argue that teachers view Wikipedia as more unreliable than it really is
- Suggest that Wikipedia’s system of citations can actually teach students about referencing
- Suggest critical engagement with Wikipedia as a possible assignment for teachers who are skeptical of its usefulness.
You don’t necessarily have to pick one of these models—you may even use elements of both in different parts of your essay—but it’s worth considering them if you struggle to structure your arguments.
Regardless of which approach you take, your essay should always be structured using an introduction, a body, and a conclusion.