How to Revise an Essay

The revision process is about confirming that your essay works on the highest level. It’s about stepping back to consider whether you have enough material, or too much. It can involve rearranging paragraphs, adding paragraphs, or cutting paragraphs altogether.

Revisions take time and effort, but can turn a weak essay into a solid one and a solid essay into an excellent one.


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What Successful Revisions Do

Aim to strengthen and clarify your arguments.Sometimes, the thesis you come up with originally isn’t the best you can do. A good essay may evolve during the process of writing a first draft. There’s nothing wrong with that. The key is to be open to that growth process and make the most of it. If the aim of your essay has shifted since you started writing, simply write down your new thesis and read through your essay to see how – and if – your first draft material works. Remove anything that is now extraneous and adjust what remains.

Make sure your essay is solidly structured.Take a fresh look at the overarching shape of the argument you have developed during the course of your essay. Examine each paragraph and its goals to ensure that each of them helps your essay to build towards a logical conclusion. Did you write them in the order that they occurred to you, or that you found the research that supports them? That might not be the best order in which to present them, and now is the time to rearrange them so that each one builds from the previous one and leads to the next one.

Word processors make it easy to cut and paste your paragraphs into a new order, but if you do rearrange them, make sure to then reread the whole thing and double-check your transitions so that everything still makes…

Source: How to revise an essay.

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