Posted: Steve in: Blog
June 9th, 2015
Paraphrase it

The Art of Paraphrasing: How to Not Sound like a Plagiarist

Plagiarism is the bug eating even the best pieces of writing, and that’s what makes paraphrasing so important. This skill is crucial for every student. Penalties for plagiarizing might vary, but it often ends up with expulsion. Find out how to write properly with these recommendations we’ve developed for you.

1) Read the books and take notes. It is important to go through them all and decide which points you would like to include in your own paper. Do not work on individual paragraphs. Instead, go through all of them and grasp the concept. Also, by studying all the sources in advance, you will be able to come up with the concept of your own paper.

2) If there are paragraphs that do not fit into the general structure and are too difficult to comprehend yet contain important information, set them aside. You will work on them on an individual basis after you’re done with the rest.

3) Once your notes are prepared, put all of the sources in a drawer and forget about them. Otherwise, you will be tempted to peek and use someone else’s work instead of doing your own. Also, they might influence your style of writing. When there is no temptation, you have no other option but to set forth the key points in your own words.

4) When you are done with the biggest part of writing, take a look at the remaining paragraphs that have been set aside. To paraphrase each of them individually, pick up the train of thought from a different place (in the middle or even in the end) and use synonyms. Restructure and cut them ruthlessly.

5) When done, take the books out of the drawer. Make sure you didn’t miss any important points. If you did, make corresponding amendments.

6) Use special software to check if your paper is original. Plenty are available online.

7) When the paper is ready, it is time to give credit to the authors you used. Even the best piece of writing can be marked as plagiarism if you skip this step or forget at least one source.

the art of paraphrasing

The secret of refraining from plagiarism is not just putting the words in another order, and this is the concept plenty of students don’t get. You have to process the information and then announce what you have found out using your own words. Imagine that you are talking to a person who knows nothing about the subject. How could you tell her about it?

Here is another example. Remember how on ‘The Big Bang Theory’ Penny described the Schrödinger’s cat experiment to her date? Clearly, she didn’t know all the scientific words to do it, so she just went for it using her own vocabulary. This is exactly what the ‘art of paraphrasing’ means.

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Posted: Steve in: Blog
April 30th, 2015
literacy_preview

12 Practical Tips to Improve your Literacy

Okay-okay, mixing up ‘you’re’ and ‘your’ is not about you, and neither are ‘who’ and ‘which’, ‘during’ and ‘for’ and many other silly mistakes people make. Nonetheless, impeccable literacy is a thing hardly achievable. Even Harvard professors are not literacy gods. All we, mere mortals, can do is live and learn. Here are a few tips to help you improve your literacy skills.

read books

1. Quite obviously, read books.

Never underestimate reading. In most cases, correct word choice is something acquired from books. When using an e-book, set a hard-to-read font. This way you will retain information more efficiently.

2. Literacy courses.

As a rule, educational establishments and other organizations provide courses for kids and adults. Check whether you have such opportunities in your area.

3. Online courses.

Even better. You can improve your literacy without leaving home. There are various opportunities (such as Exploring the English Language delivered by The Open University) available so that you could choose the most appropriate one.

4. Online resources.

If you are not ready to spend time on an entire course, there are educational videos available. For instance, BBC offers educational videos in several categories like reading, writing, spelling, word grammar, sentence grammar, and speaking and listening.

5. Mobile applications.

Improve your literacy skills on the go by downloading an application and using it wherever you are. There are numerous spelling apps that will help you broaden your vocabulary.

6. Write at least a paragraph of text every day.

No matter what you write, just do it. Don’t forget to check any grammar rules you doubted in the process. Soon enough, you will understand what gives you the biggest trouble.

7. Turn off the automatic spell check.

If you write something using a word processor, turn off the automatic spell check. Correct any mistakes you can identify yourself and then ask the program for help. Analyze where you were wrong.

8. Watch documentaries, preferably with subtitles.

As a rule, documentary programs have sophisticated and 100% correct language. Your literacy skills can benefit from it significantly.

9. Get someone to help you write dictations.

It sounds like a daunting thing to do, but in the end it will help you become a much better writer. Do it at least once of two times a week.

10. Get a tutor.

Yes, it is expensive. However, if you ask a smart friend to help you, it might reduce the cost significantly.

11. Find online communities and entrust yourself into the hands of Grammar Nazis.

It does sound like a writer’s suicide, but the efficiency of this extreme measure can’t be denied.

12. Last but not least, play games.

Some of them are so rich with descriptions and explanations that you spend a great deal of time just reading, and reading was the first point in this list.

improving literacy

Good luck! :)

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Posted: Steve in: Blog
January 29th, 2015
Human brain function grunge with gears

TOP-20 Quotes from Three Literary Pillars to Set Your Creative Juices Flowing

Those who have never written anything more complex than a five-word SMS or a corporate email usually think writing is easy. What’s a big deal to take a though and put it on paper? What’s a big deal to create a fancy story and sell it to some random publisher? What’s a big deal to present an article, push it to a publishing house and get rich? Yeah, people think writing is easy…

However, we who know there are much more there in writing rather than ‘toying with fancy words’ know how hard it sometimes is to fetch at least a paragraph of decent writing. We can struggle an entire morning trying to think of an amazing intro, fight through the day sweating away to develop an engaging and breath-taking plot, and we sometimes greet the evening exhausted to the backbone with not even a page of decent writing worthy of reader’s attention.

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Do you know how it feels to get stuck in a writer’s block being low on ideas? Then, as a writer, you have your own remedy for this gruesome affliction. Today you’re offered a universal antidote that works well no matter how idea-sore you feel. This is an interpretation of famous writers’ quotes to fit in nowadays. Ready? Let’s start from Gabriel García Márquez.

1. Everything around can live. You just have to wake up its soul.

2. Smile, don’t make misfortune happy.

3. There is no medical cure for illnesses that can be fixed by happiness.

4. A truly patient person can always wait a bit more.

5. Don’t wear a hat, so you don’t have to tip it to anyone.

6. We’re surrounded by many beautiful and fantastic things, but bad writers frequently tell about boring and mundane ones.

7. Knowledge and wisdom come to us only when they’re least needed.

8. Inspiration comes only when you’re working.

Human brain function grunge with gears

Already feeling how your mind-gears are slowly but firmly grinding towards creativity and fructuous working day? Excellent, but there two more writing titans to share foresight through ages. Carlos Castaneda is next in turn.

9. If your life path has no heart in it, it’s a waste of time.

10. Never explain too much. In every explanation, there is an apology. Don’t think readers will be so kind to excuse you.

11. To take the maximum out of your life be able and ready to change. Although it might take years, the most difficult part is to actually want to change.

12. Always remember that your life path is just a path. If you feel the path is wrong, you have to immediacy step away from it no matter what it takes.

13. Act like your life is just a dream. Be brave and never look for excuses.

14. The main obstruction for many people to do something is the inner dialogue. As soon as you cut it, everything becomes possible.

3_find your inspiration academia research papers

Care for a bit of shamanism to awake your inner Yaqui? Well, why not, if it makes you writing page after page of marvelous stuff every day. As for our last inspirational writing icon, Bernard Shaw is here to teach you fight laziness and procrastination.

15. The world consists of idlers who want to get rich by doing nothing, and idiots, who are looking to work hard having no idea how to get rich.

16. The one who knows how to do something does it. The one who doesn’t know teaches.

17. People are like bricks. When you burn them they harden.

18. Reputation is a mask we wear just like ties, shirts, and trousers.

19. Sometimes you have to make a person laugh to draw them away from a desire to hang you.

20. Common sense and hard work make up for the lack of talent, whereas even the brightest genius can waste a lifetime without the two.

Liked the read? Come back to these quotes each time you find yourself in a writer’s block, and words of wisdom by the three prominent writers will get you back on the track in a jiffy.

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Posted: Steve in: Blog
January 8th, 2015
4_all learning methods are individual academia research com scams

Expand Your Academic Vocabulary to Study Better

Academic vocabulary is a bit different to the one of a common English word stock. Textbooks, lectures, reference sources, dissertations are written with the use of specific words and terms that are characteristic only for the world of academia.

Many young students sometimes find it hard to settle in the learning process up to par because a large share of words are unknown or convey meanings students yet don’t understand. That’s why, learning efficiency decreases resulting in a lower educational value taken from studies.

However, a student who wields AWL (Academic Word List) is the one who receives the maximum effect brought by academic reading and learning. All in all, AWL consists of 570 words that are the most widely spread in the academic community and are must-have, must-learn and must-use for every young student looking to succeed in education. Developed by Averil Coxhead, a researcher from New Zealand, AWL is based on a computer analysis of several hundred of academic texts and includes the most widely used expressions among more than 3.5 words under research in total.

AWL is highly advised for learning by every student pursuing an effective and comprehensive study of college and university reference sources. Without knowledge of the words from the list, the educational process is counter-productive.

academic word list

Six officially recommended AWL learning action items plus some extra tips

Usually learning new words, especially related to an academia language stock, is difficult and brain-cracking. However, students are offered a six-item rule of thumb to boost learning AWL and other more complex lexicon units.

  • Get into appropriate learning state of mind.
  • Use your senses to acquire information.
  • Understand what you are learning.
  • Memorize what you are learning.
  • Use words you’ve learned in everyday speech.
  • Cover feedback based on your correct use of AWL.

learning new words academia-research review

Of course, all learning methods are individual, as some might work well for a part of students and totally work not for others. However, sticking to commonly accepted practices is highly advised. To help you get started, you might want to use a couple of extra hints.

  • Listen to classical music. It ignites mind’s learning activity.
  • Memorize words in context to understand the meaning better.
  • Use mnemonic approach: the first letter of some object tells you the first letter of a word you’re trying to learn.
  • Learn at least ten new words from the AWL a day.
  • Use the words you’ve learned in a short article or astory to practice using them.
  • Move while you’re learning. It is scientifically proven movement boosts cognitive processes.
  • Try looking for a relationship between a word and it s meaning.

all learning methods are individual academia research com scams

As a rule, enriching your academic vocabulary is not big deal at all. Just make sure you’ve started covering AWL in advance, so you could move on to more advanced academia language stock during your study. A competitive edge like that always pays off with a deeper understanding of the subject resulting in better grades.

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Posted: Steve in: Thesis Tips
December 18th, 2014
5-characteristic-features-of-a-thesis-statement-review-of-academia-research

Tips to Write a Mesmerizing Thesis Statement in Half an Hour

Thesis statement is the cornerstone in the arch of your essay. As a matter of fact, the entire written assignment is based upon the argument that is the main claim made by the essay you develop in the body copy.

Any thesis must be consistent and strict-to-the point. As a rule, the key essay statement is given at the end of your introduction paragraph. It is presented by a sentence or two telling readers the main point of your essay. It shows that your paper is thoroughly researched, developed and backed up by applicable pieces of evidence.

Traditionally, students are advised to consider a thesis statement as an umbrella under which the rest of the essay contents fit.  2_5 characteristic features of a thesis statement review of academia research

5 characteristic features of a thesis statement

1. Delivers the main statement of your essay.
2. Informs the audience how exactly you’re going to develop the subject matter at hand.
3. Tells the audience how exactly the topic will be dwelled upon in the main body (also called an “essay roadmap”).
4. Provides a way to understand the topic under analysis.
5. Welcomes the readers to dig into reading the next chapter of your essay.

Before writing a thesis

Producing a solid thesis statement isn’t a thing done in a jiffy. A smart student spends hours of preparatory work to come finally up with a thesis idea that hits the target. Fetching a couple of variants of a thesis is a sign of you following into the right direction.

Before you think of a killer argument to base a key essay statement on, lots of preliminary activities take place. First and foremost, you have to read an assignment attentively and make sure you understand the topic at hand to the core.

Afterwards, the researching stage comes. Here you do your best to find out pieces of information relating to your topic that will be interesting for your readers to know. Finally, before presenting a winning thesis statement, you spend some time meditating on referential sources collected until a brilliant idea usually strikes you out of blue.

A self-check list to make sure your thesis statement gives gear academia research papers

A self-check list to make sure your thesis statement gives gear

So, you’ve picked a thesis that is the most preferable in your opinion. What comes next? You have to make sure the statement does live up to thesis standards in the academic world.

Am I answering a question in the task well enough? A thesis with an argument that is out of line with a question in the assignment has to be fixed.

Would readers like to challenge or oppose my thesis? A thesis statement that isn’t resonating with the audience might be a mere summary of a topic, not a claim.

Is my thesis specific enough? Vague milk-and-water statements have little chances to hook readers into reading your essay and engaging into any sort of discussion.

Does my thesis pass “So what?”, “Why?”, and “How?” tests? In case the answer is positive, you managed to connect the dots relating your statement to the body copy and conclusions.

Writing a thesis that leaves your readers captivated and restless until they read your essay till the very end is a small miracle, yet it can be mastered far quicker than you think. A good student can prepare a finely crafted and bullet-proof thesis under half an hour with a bit of subsequent polishing needed on the proofreading page.  Are you up for the challenge? Go for it!

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Posted: Steve in: Career in Writing
December 8th, 2014
Become a better writer

How to Become a Better Writer Today?  

Believe it or not, but today almost everyone can be considered a writer. Not a professional wordsmith, no, rather an amateur scribbler having to cope with certain written duties and routines during the day. Nowadays, kids and students produce tons of SMS, blog posts and twitts. Office experts deal with copious amounts of emails and paperwork. Writing has already become an inevitable part of people’s life. However, there is still a band of writers who follow the path of writing to earn living.

And no office clerk or teenage kid will ever understand what’s it like to finally find a proper rhyme, what it feels to get stuck in a writer’s block for weeks, how awesome it kicks in to come up with a genuine metaphor that makes the entire piece shine… There are problems only writers by devotion understand, and there are solutions only professionals might apply. And here are a couple of them.

Become a better writer

 

Love thy life-call

A writer without passion is a rock, it’s useless and only takes some space to fill in. No matter how difficult it is for you to generate a page after page, you either love what you do or quit. Smart people say there are so many wonderful things in life to write about, but too many lousy writers make us not seeing these beauties. Don’t be one of such writers, make an effort to be better and deliver people emotions they seek in life.

1_Love thy life-call academia-research review

 

Need to write? Sit down and write

Since Renaissance (or even earlier), procrastination is known as the number one enemy of every solid writer, Steven Pressfield agrees to that. The more you hang a leg, the less time you have to deliver some decent writing. A new article or chapter in the book won’t complete itself. The only way it’s done and you get paid is you sitting down and working hard.

A sound idea is to find a time of the day most appropriate for your writing efforts. Is it in the morning? Or is it after sundown? When this magic time comes, you do what? Right, sit down and write. Modern wordsmiths like Zadie Smith strongly recommended to “unplug.” It means to turn off your mobile phone and, most crucially, the internet connection. Sarah Waters would also advise you to be disciplined and consistent, but you’ve already known that, right?

do it - procrastination concept

 

Organize your working spot

Everyone has a favorite spot where mind always gets clear from negativity, daily routine, and personal problems. A writer without his spot is like an F1 pilot without a race car. Hemingway has his favorite writing spot, Joanne Rowling has her favorite writing spot, you should have yours too.

But before you write today’s first sentence, make sure your spot is clean and tidy. A messy workplace conceives messy thought and ideas, which is not the kind of thing your audience expects.

Fetch an outline, for Shakespeare’s sake

Any written piece is a descent down a mountain river from point A to point B. You are a kayakist, and an outline is your canoe. Without an outline, you will either drown in the whirl of words or be lucky enough to make it till the water side, yet the point B will never be reached.

Have a good head on your shoulders, get a writing plan for every written piece you plan to produce. Be it a 200-page novel or a magazine article, an outline is must-have, unless you want to get lost in the wilderness of your own ideas and speculations.

At the end of the day, Helen Dunmore would recommend you to stop writing… when you still want to continue. Well, it’ll give you a boost substantial enough to continue doing some great job tomorrow, and then the day after tomorrow until the work is ready to face your keen readership.

1_Fetch an outline, for Shakespeare’s sake academia research review

 

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Posted: Steve in: Freelance Writing
July 22nd, 2014
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Credible/Non-credible sources

Unreliable sources don’t always contain true, accurate, and up-to-date information.

Using these sources in academic writing can result in discrediting writers’ status.

That’s why it is extremely important to use credible and reliable sources only.

This guide will help you in evaluating whether a source is relevant or not.

 

 

What sources can be considered as credible?

  • materials published within last 10 years;
  • research articles written by respected and well-known authors;
  • websites registered by government and educational institutions (.gov, .edu, .ac);
  • academic databases (i.e. Academic Search Premier or JSTOR);
  • materials from Google Scholar.

What sources should be avoided?

  • out-of-date materials (published over 10 years ago);
  • posts from social networks (i.e. facebook);
  • blogs;
  • research articles without citations;
  • websites ending in .com, .org, .net etc.

NB! Wikipedia can never be considered as a reliable source of information since it can be edited by anyone. However, it can be used when you are first trying to understand the topic. Moreover, there are lots of further links and references that can be useful when doing a research or writing academic papers.

How do I know if a source is reliable or not?

Always ask yourself the following questions in order to determine if a source is trustworthy or not.

1. Who is the author?

Reliable sources are always written by well-known and respected authors. These sources are always properly and accurately referenced. Therefore, when checking the source’s credibility you can find more information for your own research.

2. When was the material published?

Generally, books published in 1990s contain outdated information. Hence, you are expected to use materials published not later than 10 years ago.

3. What is the purpose of a source?

Always try to evaluate if the source presents clear and unbiased information or if its aim is to alter and persuade one’s views. A source written from a specific point of view may still be credible, but it can limit the coverage of a topic to a particular side of a debate.

4. How is this source proved?

Try to avoid sources that don’t have references or evidence to prove its point of view. Always make sure, if the source provides support to the given claims.

5. What type of audience is this source aimed at?

Always take into account what type of sources your audience will value. For example, if you are writing for an academic audience, they will definitely prefer peer-reviewed journals and scholarly papers.

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Posted: Steve in: Freelance Writing
July 10th, 2014
Plagiarism-150x150

Plagiarism Checkers Review

Plagiarism is the intentional appropriation of authorship. If considered from the viewpoint of academic writing, it is borrowing the works of others, completely or partially and presenting it under your own name or without specifying the name of the real author. We can distinguish the following types of plagiarism: deliberate plagiarism, paraphrasing, patchwork paraphrasing, bluffing, stitching sources, and using a copy of your own work.

With flourishing of digital technology, plagiarism becomes a global problem throughout the world. To avoid similarities, various software and online plagiarism detection services were developed and implemented. Today, we will describe the most popular and useful checkers, which are available for everyone.

Turnitin

Turnitin is a global leader when it comes to dealing with plagiarism. It is very popular among University students. Turnitin cooperates with leading universities in order to provide an effective tool to determine the similarities in students’ papers. One of its many features, for example, allows determining papers which have been translated from English into other languages. Turnitin is very widespread software and it is available for users in more than 100 countries around the world.

Database of this detection system includes:

• more than 1.6 million active teachers

• more than 45 billion web pages

• more than 10,000 educational institutions

• more than 24 million licensed students

iThenticate

It is the professional plagiarism software widely used by research constitutions, scholarly publishers and professional writers. It is possible to check the paper written in over different 30 languages, for example: Japanese, Chinese, German, French, Italian, Arabic, Russian and Turkish. It supports the following types of files: XML, DOC, PDF, HTML, HWP, RTF etc. It contains various types of document in its database: articles from different publications, research papers, manuscripts, business reports, financial analysis, PhD and Masters dissertations.

Database of this detection system includes:

• more than 38 million (STM) publishers

• more than 45 billion web pages

• more than 130 million content items

CopyScape

It is a free online checker. However, it also includes the paid version (Premium search). It offers expanded search possibilities and contains more options. The users can check an unlimited number of papers per day. There is an option to save the uploaded text in the Private Index, so that it can search for similarities between the papers checked in the future and the ones that have been uploaded in the database.

Plagium

It is a free online checker, very similar to CopyScape. However, it is possible to check the paper no more than 10 times per day. It is slightly less reliable that other plagiarism checkers.

PlagiarismCheck

It is yet another free online plagiarism checker. PlagiarismCheck allows checking an unlimited number of papers. It is easy to use, smart, but not very fast. It works with a wide variety of document types. It is a possible choice for teacher, students, as well as freelance writers.  You need only to create a free account.

There are many others good checkers such us: Dupli Checker, Plagiarisma.net, PlagiarismChecker.com. All of them are simple to use and they are available for everyone. Using them is a matter of preferably. However, when choosing the software or an online service to check the document for plagiarism, one should take into account multiple factors, such as weather this paper will or won’t be stored in the database. Remember, that checking the paper in Turnitin will save the paper and if the customer then checks it there again, it will show 100% plagiarism. Factors like these are all that matters in business, such as Freelance writing. So, please, keep that in mind and don’t plagiarize!

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