6 Common Mistakes Made by College Students in Academic Writing Projects

Embarking on an academic work is obligatory for every college student who wants to graduate one day. Such an academic work is considered one of the final and most fundamental practices in the curriculum for college students. Some students who embark on their academic writing projects may not actually be aware of the mistakes (whether trivial or vital) that may delay their graduation or cause them to lose marks, or points in their assignments. So, college students should pay attention to these tips to avoid making the errors herein discussed.


6 Common Mistakes Made by College Students in Academic Writing Projects

In this article we discuss 6 common mistakes made by college students in their academic writing projects. To give you an opportunity to practice proofreading, we have left a few spelling, punctuation, or grammatical errors in the text. See if you can spot them! If you spot the errors correctly, you will be entitled to a 10% discount.

Embarking on an academic work is obligatory for every college student who wants to graduate one day. Such an academic work is considered one of the final and most fundamental practices in the curriculum for college students. Some students who embark on their academic writing projects may not actually be aware of the mistakes (whether trivial or vital) that may delay their graduation or cause them to lose marks, or points in their assignments. So, college students should pay attention to these tips to avoid making the errors herein discussed.

Let’s say that you wish to write an academic paper. In this case, you would want to make it as impressive as possible. Always. However, very often, many college students make a few mistakes that spoil their academic writing projects. If you are among those students, you need to learn how to avoid mistakes in your academic papers.

Still have doubts? If so, then you should learn about the most common mistakes that students make while writing their academic papers.

1. Not Using Library or Online Resources for Research

Yes, it is the first and most common mistake that many students make when it comes to writing academic papers. Obviously, if you want to produce a writing project that is well-researched, you first need to identify proper research sources. Concerning this, you need to look nowhere else but, in a library, or at online academic resources. Yes, you need to seek help from a librarian for guidance to proper sources for researching and writing about a topic.

Common Mistakes Made by College Students

If you want to improve your writing of academic papers, you need to go through different types of resources to collect adequate information about your subject. So, keep this point in mind for the next time you plan to write an academic paper.

2. Inadequate Academic Referencing and Improper Use of Citation

Another of the most common mistakes that many college students make is that of not consulting enough academic references and of improper use of citation. Yes, inadequate academic referencing and use of improper citation will spoil your work. Obviously, you do not want to destroy your project or produce academic papers of substandard quality.

So, we would strongly advise you to learn how to use citations properly when writing academic or research papers.

Academic referencing acknowledges the sources used by the authors mentioned in your paper. It requires the connection of citations to the list of works cited in a manuscript and gives credit to the sources of information used in your paper. Citing a reference acknowledges the work to which you, the author, have referred and allows your readers to find the work cited. Citing each source that you use in your academic writing has certain implications: Academic referencing helps demonstrate that you are not the first person who started the referenced subject. Furthermore, it enables you to show that you used the ideas of another author (or other authors) to create a new one. Therefore, readers could track those references to obtain more ideas about a particular point an author has made.

Common Mistakes Made by College Students

In dealing with this issue during their academic studies, students are often required to adopt a particular citation style.  The APA (American Psychological Association) manual of style is one of the most widely used for academic referencing in the behavioral and social sciences. The APA style adopts the author-date system. In general, in-text citations consist mainly of the last name of the author(s) and the year of publication placed within the text, e.g., (Williams, 2019). In in-text citations, the last name of the author(s) is followed by a comma and then the publication year. You should always enclose the entire citation between parentheses. If it consists of a direct quotation, you should add the page number as well, e.g., (Williams, 2019, p.  33).

3. Not Using Actual Format 

It is true that research can make your writing more engaging, but it does not mean that you should ignore the importance of formatting. Yes, if you are going to write academic papers, you should keep academic formatting in mind.

Many students fail to use a proper format while writing their papers. In the end, they create something that does not look authentic. So, if you want to give credibility to your work, you need to format it properly. Adopting standard formatting for your college assignments indicates that you comprehend the requirements of the college, and this therefore helps to improve your own credibility. (To see how to format academic documents in Microsoft Word 2020, click here. The article gives you the fundamental rules for formatting your academic papers as described in most guidelines, such as the MLA and APA styles).

4. Plagiarism

Plagiarism is considered a serious offense in academic studies. As discussed in the blogs titled What is Plagiarism | How to Avoid It?, the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) determines plagiarism as both the theft or misappropriation of intellectual property and the substantial unattributed textual copying of another's work.

Given that the consequences of plagiarism, which may serve as a deterrent, range from mere caution to failure in a course. It is true that some students intentionally submit plagiarized assignments. However, there are those who commit the offense because of various misconceptions about it.

Common Mistakes Made by College Students

Briefly, it is clear that trying as much as possible to avoid plagiarism is one unquestionable way to get good grades in academic assignments. Professors and academic advisors or supervisors watch out for plagiarism, and a slight copy and paste could be the end of getting good grades in your college assignment. (To see 5 practical ways to avoid plagiarism, click here).

5. Not Availing Professional Help

Whether you are going to write a college essay, term paper, or thesis, you should not forget to take advantage of help from a professional. Yes, you may need to retain the services of editing and proofreading professionals. It’s a fact that by availing editing and proofreading solutions, you can easily get your work done according to your specific requirements. So, if you are confused about how to write quality academic papers, you should look nowhere else but for professional English editing and proofreading services.

Proofreading service will correct all errors in grammar, punctuation, syntax, and spelling in your paper. Editing service will improve the quality of your academic writing hence the content, the overall structure, the quality of findings and analysis, simplicity, and referencing. In other words, editing will mostly make some major changes to improve the standard of the academic writing of the document. This is especially important because an editing service will guarantee that the main purpose of the paper is met.

6. Grammatical Spelling and Punctuation Errors

Imagine a text written without the necessary colons, periods, or commas. It would be difficult to read. In academic writing, an author can be easily misunderstood if  they use vague sentences. One of the main purposes of punctuation marks is to disambiguate sentences. For instance, the mere omission of a comma in a sentence can lead to an interpretation different from the writer’s intended meaning. That is why an editor or proofreader carefully looks out for punctuation errors when editing or proofreading manuscripts, respectively. Because of similarities in the appearance and apparent functions of punctuation marks in English, many students tend to use some of them interchangeably. For example, the differences in the use of a hyphen (-), an en-dash (–), and an em-dash (—). Spellings that lead to grammatical misunderstanding are one of the important aspects of academic work and that most college students overlook. For example, the use of “their” and “there”, “heir” and “here”, “weir” and “where”, “by” and “buy”. Thus, an academic assignment must be free of grammatically wrongly spelled words.

If you need help, then contact Best Edit & Proof!

Best Edit & Proof expert editors aim to provide your manuscripts with proper scholarly and academic tone and style. They will significantly improve the chances of having your research manuscript accepted for publishing. They provide subject-area proofreading and editing services in several fields categorized under various disciplines. With our extensive knowledge and expertise, we will help you find the right tone and style for your manuscript.

If you need our subject-area editors to format your manuscripts, giving you the fundamental rules for formatting your manuscripts as described in your guidelines, such as APA, MLA, or Chicago/Turabian styles, then contact us. At Best Edit & Proof, our proofreaders and editors edit every type of academic paper. We have a user-friendly website, and a simplified ordering process. 

6 Common Mistakes Made by College Students

If you would like our subject-area editors and language experts to work on your project for the improvement of its academic tone and style, then please visit the order page. It is easy! It takes only a few minutes to submit your paper and complete the process. Click here to see how it works.

We have flat-rate pricing based on our type of service (editing or proofreading), word count, and turnaround time. Enter your word count or copy and paste your document into our pricing calculator to get an instant quote.

If you need support for academic editing and proofreading, contact us. You can also e-mail us or use the 24/7 live chat module to get direct support. Our doctorally qualified editors will polish and fine-tune your projects.

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