All academic papers require formatting with appropriate style. The format of an academic paper is specified by professors or lecturers. The academic papers should be formatted with the correct style specified in the instruction. There are different styles that a student can use for formatting academic papers. Editing is what you begin doing as soon as you finish your first draft. You reread your draft to see, for example, whether the paper is well-organized, the transitions between paragraphs are smooth, and your evidence really backs up your argument.

You can edit on several levels:

Content: have you completed the necessary assignment requires? If it is required to do so, does your paper make an argument? Is your argument complete? Are all of your claims consistent? Have you supported each point with adequate evidence? Is all of the information in your paper relevant to the assignment and/or your overall writing goal?

Overall structure: does your paper have a clear and concise introduction and conclusion? Is your thesis clearly stated in your introduction? Did you clearly relate each paragraph in the body to you thesis? Are all of your paragraphs arranged in a logical sequence? Did you write clear transitions between your paragraphs?

Paragraph structure: does each paragraph have a clear topic sentence? Does each paragraph support one main idea? Are there any run on or missing sentences in any of your paragraphs?

Clarity: have you defined all important terms that might be unclear to your reader? Is the meaning of each sentence clear? Have you chosen the proper words/terms to express your ideas? Are you writing in a voice that will resonate with your intended audience?

Style: have you used an appropriate tone for your paper (formal, informal, persuasive, etc.)? Avoid writing in a passive voice. Does your writing contain a lot of unnecessary phrases, such as “furthermore,” “there are,” “due to the fact that,” etc.?

Citations: have you appropriately cited quotes, paraphrases, and ideas you got from sources? Are your citations in the correct format?

Proofreading: is the final stage of the editing process, focusing on common errors, such as misspellings and mistakes in grammar and punctuation. You should proofread only after you have finished all of your other editing revisions.

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