A Simple Guide on How to Edit a Research Paper
If you think you are finished with your research paper when you are finished writing, your thinking is incorrect. After all of the researching, organizing, and writing is finished, editing is a very important aspect of the entire research paper process. Unfortunately, students have more challenges with the editing process than they do with the earlier steps in the research paper writing process. To help with the editing process, here are some suggestions:
- Read the paper aloud. The best way for students to learn about their own writing and find their own mistakes is to use the “one-foot voice.” You use a quiet voice, like a whisper. The lips move, but very little sound comes out, so no one can really hear you. Since you can hear yourself, you can hear the mistakes and correct them immediately.
- Check the first words of every sentence. By checking for sentence variety, you will be able to improve the flow and fluency of the research paper. You will be able to quickly see if you use certain words too frequently in the paper and you can make the necessary changes to better your paper.
- Match your in-text citations to the bibliography page. The citations are often the most important part of the paper for grading purposes. You should be sure that you have used all of the entries on the bibliography page and that you have included all of the citations in your bibliography. One of the best ways to edit citations and bibliography entries is to use one of the online apps that will write the entries for you.
- Look at the topic sentences and thesis. It is important that the thesis sentence is reflected in each topic sentence. You can check for organization this way. After you check the topic sentences and their relationship to the thesis, you can also check the facts and explanations in the paragraphs to see if they related to the topic sentences.
- Read the introduction and conclusion. Double check that your introduction and conclusion reflect each other. The conclusion should be the mirror image of the introduction, but with subtle changes to the sentence structure and word choice. While you are looking at the introduction, it is important that you check on the hook to see if it really is interesting. You can also check that the closing in the conclusion makes the reader continue to think about the topic, too.