Writing Tips

1. Carefully read through the essay title to see what you are being asked to do.

2. The first step is to decide what to include in your writing-brainstorm.

3. Think about who will be reading your work.

4. Make a list of all the things you want to mention: Organize your main points into paragraphs.

5. Make a fist draft- Say a bit more about this topic.

6. Take time to review what you've written: Is your main argument clear?

7. Remember to proofread your essay (for spelling mistakes).

Pre-Writing Strategies

source: http://aaweb.gallaudet.edu/CLAST/Tutorial_and_Instructional_Programs/English_Works/Writing/Prewriting_Writing_and_Revising.html

Pre-writing is a way of organizing your thoughts and beginning to put the information you have on paper. It is best to do a pre-writing activity before you actually begin writing your paper or essay.
You should use prewriting to...think more clearly
see a start of your paper
keep track of your ideas
practice expressing yourself in writing


Mapping is a process of reorganizing and rearranging (moving) the most important ideas and information from your reading or textbook and converting it into a diagram with your own words to help you understand and remember what you read.
Because mapping makes it easier to organize and remember what you have read, mapping is a useful studying technique. Moreover, mapping can help you organize your own writing when used as a pre-writing technique.

Using Questions

As a Pre-Writing and Organizational Technique

Prewriting by questioning is a five-step process which allows you to:
  • recognize the richness and diversity of your subject (exploration);
  • gather as much information as possible about this aspect (discovery);
  • make some sense out of the body of information you've assembled (classification);
  • determine what you want to say to the reader, and the order in which you want to say it (selecting and ordering).
Exploration begins with predictable and basic questions. Topic: teachers.
  • What makes a good teacher?
  • What makes a bad teacher?
  • What do I dislike most of all in teachers?
  • What do I like most of all in teachers?
  • What do students think of teachers?
  • How many students admire their teachers?
Discovery occurs when the student answers the questions during brainstorming:
  • I dislike teachers who are unprepared for their classes.
  • I dislike teachers who don't know their subjects.
  • Some teachers can't communicate in sign language.
  • Some teachers sign so fast that you can't take notes.
  • I dislike disorganized teachers, for all you get is a big jumble.
  • Some teachers are closed-minded; they don't accept points of view different from their own.
  • I dislike teachers who are aloof and distant; they seem detached from their students.
  • I dislike teachers who have "pets," who show favoritism by giving certain students special consideration and privileges.
  • Some teachers let their students walk all over them and don't maintain any order or discipline in the classroom, so nobody can learn anything.
The classification stage is an important step in analysis. The student classifies the major characteristics of his statements about teachers.

In the selecting and ordering stage, the student limits his/her discussion to two or three promising categories [personality, and closed-minded] and orders these findings into outline form or working plan, adding details to flesh in the general assertions:
  1. Introduction
    1. I dislike teachers who are closed-minded.
    2. I dislike teachers who have bad personalities.
  2. Body
    1. Some teachers are closed minded.
      1. They don't accept points of view different from their own.
      2. They don't allow free discussion of ideas in the classroom.
      3. They present only one side of an issue.
    2. Some teachers may have bad personalities.
      1. Such a teacher seems detached from his students.
      2. It's hard to like him or to work hard for him because you feel he doesn't care about you as a person . . .
  3. Conclusion

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