Posted by ICON School on May 11, 2022 10:01:55 AM
Strong writing skills are transferable across various professional industries, so learning such skills will always be a part of a student’s education. In traditional schools, students tend to have more opportunities for verbal participation in class. But in online learning, students will need to rely on the strength of their written communication in class and assignments. Here’s how students can improve their writing skills in an online school.
Why Writing Is Important
Technology may allow us to search Google with our voices, but writing is an important skill to learn for many areas of our lives. Great writing can:
- Help you land jobs
- Make you more trustworthy
- Lead to better communication
- Showcase your expertise
Outside of the many professional benefits, writing can be highly beneficial for our personal growth. Great writing can:
- Help you stay positive
- Help you work through feelings
- Help you better express your thoughts
Steps for Improving Your Writing
There are writing methods and frameworks that all great writers apply to improve their communication. By following these guidelines, you too can develop great writing through determination and lots of practice.
Know Your Mode of Communication
Online learning can be a unique experience since students face the challenge of using the same devices for education and social media. When so much of our lives rely on short, quick social media slang, it can be challenging to switch back to writing formal research papers in school work.
Understand what the expectations are for each assignment to write with greater intention. For instance, term papers will require an academic writing approach. However, your teacher may allow you to write in a conversational tone when participating in group chats to discuss class assignments. If you are unsure, you can ask your teacher about their expectations for each lesson.
Power of Outlining
Grammar isn’t the only hallmark of great writing, as the flow of your thoughts from one paragraph to the next is equally important. Outlining is a process that all students have heard about, but many students still skip this stage in favor of diving right in. However, it can’t be stressed enough how an outline can significantly improve the flow of your writing by giving each paragraph more focus.
It’s important to outline your main points and clearly state your objectives before you begin writing an essay.
The writing process will be easier and, therefore, quicker when you have a clear vision of the outcome of an assignment before you begin writing it. It’s common for the theme of a research paper to change throughout the writing process, so an outline will give writers a “birds-eye” view of the argument and will be much easier to revise if you need to change your main points.
Writing Is Rewriting
The writing process requires a lot of rewriting, so editing is just as important as outlining. A first draft is often just that: a first draft. Once you have your thoughts down on the page, you can tighten the grammar and hone in the structure of your arguments.
If you have time, take a break from writing so that you can come back to the assignment with a refreshed mind. We tend to catch additional errors and discover better ways to phrase our sentences after spending some time away.
Use Online Tools to Improve Writing
We all tend to form habits in our writing, good and bad. Online writing tools like Grammarly can help improve your writing by revealing these grammar habits, whether they be issues in clarity, conciseness, or unnecessary wording. Grammarly even explains to users why these suggestions were made so that students can apply this knowledge to their writing on future assignments.
It’s important to note that online writing tools aren’t always correct, so it isn’t a good idea to accept every change that the software suggests. However, Grammarly’s inaccuracies allow students to decide which suggestions will improve their writing and which tips have misunderstood the context of the original essay.
When seeing first-hand how these changes can improve an essay, you can apply that newfound knowledge as you begin writing your next assignment.
Final Tips for Improving Your Writing
- Block out distractions: Many distractions threaten to pull our attention away. Set aside some time to write and commit to being focused.
- Practice makes perfect: Practice outside of assignments by targeting the different elements of writing. Focus on grammar, paragraph structure, and the flow of your writing.
- Proofreading: You can also have a fellow student or someone you trust read through your work and help you improve in these areas.
Our world may be increasingly digital, but great writing skills are just as essential as ever. And even though technology has changed the way we write, developing your ability to convey clear thoughts through written words will be vital in many areas of your life beyond online learning.If you need help getting started in our fully accredited public school, reach out to the team at ICON today!