If you’ve landed on this blog, chances are you’re looking to improve your writing skills to achieve your academic goals. But if you’re a foreign student, the academic transition can be even tougher, especially if you’re striving to learn a different language.
The first thing you should know is that there’s no easy way to become prolific at academic writing, be it in a native or foreign language. But don’t fret, there certainly are some tips you can follow in order to make the necessary improvements.
If you’re worried that your writing skills aren’t up to par, simply follow these 3 must-know academic writing tips for foreign students that’ll help you make the most of your time:
Tip #1: Make Reading a Habit
Reading books and articles in English (or any foreign language for that matter) is an effective way to improve your vocabulary and grammar, and develop your skills in writing.
If you’re looking to study a new language, spare some time reading novels, comics, newspaper articles, and even labels and manuals, in that particular language. Listening to audiobooks is also fine, but as much as possible, you’ll want to read physical books or eBooks that allow you to take note of things like correct spelling and punctuation, as well as an author’s overall writing style.
If you want to learn a specific writing style, try to focus more on reading novels and articles that can help you improve in that particular style. For example, self-help guidebooks are often written in a casual and conversational style, unlike a college essay which has a more formal tone to them.
Tip #2: Learn from Your Mistakes
Learning to write in a foreign language is no walk in the park. You can’t completely avoid making mistakes along the way – some of which might even be quite embarrassing. However, this is not a reason to stop learning altogether. After all, we tend to make mistakes from time to time, even when we write in our own native language!
Instead, take these mistakes as an opportunity to learn and don’t be afraid to put your words into writing. Sure, it’s normal to feel discouraged sometimes, but remember that these mistakes can actually point you to areas that need further improvement. Most importantly, take note of your mistakes so you can avoid committing them again in the future.
Tip #3: Get the Help You Need from a Native Speaker
Here’s a fun fact: Even famous writers have proofreaders and editors who check their works for errors before they get published.
Therefore, it’s all the more important for you to find someone who can help review your work when you’re writing an academic paper in a foreign language. It can be a friend or a family member who can proofread your paper. Or if you need a native speaker who can help correct your academic writing, simply check IHateWritingEssays rankings to find some good recommendations for professional proofreading and editing assistance.
Remember that no matter how good a speaker you are, there can be some nuances in a language that only native speakers are attuned to. They can tell you if a sentence sounds awkward in their language, and can give suggestions to write it in a way that’s more natural (and you can trust them on this because they know what they’re talking about).
On the other hand, if you need a more comprehensive feedback or practice on your academic writing, many foreign students also resort to finding a native speaker they can have lthe anguage exchange with. For instance, if you’re French and want to improve your writing skills in English, you can invite a native English-speaking friend to set up a language exchange with you. This way, not only do you get to improve your skills in English, but you can also help your friend polish up his writing skills in your native language. It’s a win-win situation.
The reality is that working on your academic writing won’t bring great results overnight. Given this fact, it’s best to start early in polishing up your skills. It’s going to be a long road ahead and once you become aware of what good academic writing is, make sure to apply what you’ve learned and written as often as possible.
Remember that reading more and writing frequently are keys to improving your writing skills. By reading, you get to learn proper grammar and punctuation and absorb various writing styles that you can adapt when it’s time to create a style of your own. And of course, the more you express your thoughts and ideas on paper, the better you get at writing in that particular language.
As with anything, it takes time, effort, and patience to become better at academic writing, so it’s best to gear yourself up with a positive attitude. Eventually, all that hard work will pay off!
Author’s Bio: Carol is very keen on teaching students new, effective ways of learning. When not freelancing and blogging on education-related matters, Carol enjoys travelling. She takes immense pleasure of visiting new countries.