It is convenient to remember that the objective of the academic writing is to present the results of your research, the analysis of the results and your conclusions in a persuasive way to your readers.
Therefore, the need for precision and clarity of expression is one of the distinguishing marks of any research work (thesis, dissertation, monograph).
- Goodbye to ambiguous expressions:
In informal speech and writing, the sensation of the word is often used interchangeably with believing and thinking.
In academic writing, however, the results of research must be transmitted with greater precision.
Consider the difference in meaning between “I feel the correct dose is 25 mg” and “I think the correct dose is 25 mg.” Which statement would give you more confidence when following a recipe? It confines the use of touch to situations in which emotion or sensory perception are under discussion. Do you want to know more tips about thesis? then you can visit www.customwritingservice.com
Correct: Tesla believed that alternating current was more commercially viable than direct current.
Correct: Tesla felt a jolt when he grabbed the cut electric wire.
Incorrect: Tesla considered that alternating current was more commercially viable than direct current.
The difference is clear, right?
It projects more credibility to the verb to believe that the verb to consider in the referred context, and the verb to feel is well used just to express a sensory perception.
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While and although
Limit the use of “while” only to describe events that occur simultaneously.
It is not a grammatical error to use while in the sense of though, but it can lead to confusion.
Tom enjoys eating mashed potatoes while Henry eats chips.
Does Tom’s enjoyment of mashed potatoes depend or is it chronologically related to Henry’s potato chips?
If so, the previous sentence is fine.
If, on the other hand, it is two adversative sentences, use preferably though or but to emphasize the contrast between the two events. This will avoid ambiguities, such as those shown in the following set of sentences:
The salmon swim upstream while the leaves float downstream. [Fish and leaves move at the same time]
The salmon swim upstream, while the leaves float downstream. [The movement of the fish contrasts with the movement of the leaves]
Since then and because
Similarly, the use of since then means later. It transmits a clear sequence of events.
If you do not intend to convey a chronological sequence, use that instead:
We knew that the car was stolen since it was parked in the garage. [The car was first parked, then stolen]
We knew that the car was stolen, because it was parked in the garage. [The presence of the car in the garage was proof of theft]
Avoid the approximation language
Vague language weakens the impact of your ideas and makes it harder for readers to evaluate your work.
Avoid terms like very few, some, mostly, and almost all, particularly when you report the results of empirical experiments.
Tell your readers exactly when you made your observations.
Avoid euphemisms and jargon
Each field has its own technical vocabulary, a kind of shorthand that communicates ideas in a compact form. This is a meaning of the word jargon, and it is not a bad thing.
The problem appears when the writers use a technical vocabulary where it is not applicable.
Extremely technical language can be justified in a dissertation or in a laboratory report, when you are writing for a narrow audience.
However, when you are writing a journal article, consider whether the use of scientific jargon can be a barrier to readers outside your subspecialty.
Your article will find a broader reader (and, therefore, be cited more often) if it avoids unnecessarily obscure language.
And if you’re going to use little-known technical words, write down their meaning at the bottom of the page. If they are abundant, include them at the end of the document in a glossary of terms.
The jargon can also refer to the substitution of a Euphemism for a familiar phrase.
The federal bureaucracy provides ample evidence of this use (for example, an enhanced interrogation for torture, housing insecurity for the homeless), but academic writers must also fight against this trend.
Do not be afraid to be direct about unpleasant topics; Face them face to face. Your readers will respect you for it.
- Read and reread:
Surely you have heard that you must read again and again before correcting your drafts. That is very true. Not only you should read it, but it is recommended that other people read it too. In this way, you will be able to appreciate errors, omissions and contradictions more easily.
- Be simple:
Forget the far-fetched and pedantic words that far from giving elegance to the text, make it impossible to understand. Say simply what you have to say. Avoid long and abstract words, and choose instead, the concrete and the smallest. Remember that you are looking to be clear and precise in your ideas.
Use short sentences, short paragraphs, and put aside the tangled and confusing explanations. They will only cause the reader to get stuck and drown without perceiving the main idea.
- Avoid unnecessary repetitions:
Clear all the repeated words and phrases that make the text heavy and difficult to read.
If you already have an idea with few words, do not load it with unnecessary content. This also applies the golden rule that less is more.
Use synonyms and antonyms to replace those words that you must necessarily repeat. This will prevent the document from being tired, monotonous and ugly.
Certainly, there are more tricks to achieve greater clarity and precision in our academic documents, but these are some of the most important, I would say the basics.
Take them into account when writing any research paper (thesis, dissertation, monograph, project, essay, etc), and cheers! The more you put them into practice, the more you will become, until you use them automatically.