It may be difficult for some to accept help and advice, to search and ask for it, even admit that they need it – especially when it comes to something they consider themselves to be good at. Writing may seem easy after getting good grades for some essays, but scholarly writing is more of a challenge. It is different from conversational and fun online writing, from essays that can be quite informal, from blog posts that people will want to read as they are engaging as well as informative. Here’s what you may find difficult about scholarly writing and need help with:

Accuracy, Clarity and Argument

Instead of personal experience or opinion, you need to use strong arguments, figures and evidence grounded in research, analysis and synthesizing the information from different sources. You need to use clear and concise language, accurate terms and specialized vocabulary, to cite sources or research. Avoid words or phrases that hold little meaning, generalizations, clichés, redundancies, colloquialisms, contractions, intensifiers and qualifiers, expletive constructions, run-on sentences, and wordiness in general. Keeping a formal tone is not an easy task, but proofreading and editing services can help you with that. Needless to say, grammar and spelling mistakes can spoil any solid research or a great idea, but it’s the word choice and sentence construction that you are most likely to need help with in scholarly writing. Your readers shouldn’t be guessing the meaning of a sentence, or having more than one way of interpreting it. That’s what the “concise and precise” requirement stands for. While word processing tools and online grammar checkers are useful for eliminating typos and most common errors, streamlining your writing in order to meet the standards and avoid awkward text is more complicated, so you will greatly benefit from the help of an expert.

Structuring Your Work

There are strict requirements regarding the structure of your research paper or thesis, and these are often confusing for anyone who hasn’t done this type of work before. You have read and discussed the requirements many times, but still there’s that nagging feeling you may have missed or messed up? It makes sense to have a professional with relevant experience to proofread your paper, so that you can rest assured that it is structured properly. It is a myth that online writing services are just for lazy students, emerging mainly from their unwillingness to do their writing assignments, and thus being a form of cheating when someone pays money to “get my essay done and spend time having fun”.

Citing the Sources

Previous research data and information from multiple sources must be present in scholarly writing, as you need to use strong evidence, facts and figures. Integrating the opinions and arguments of others into your own to support your research is an essential skill, but not the one that’s learned instantly, even if you read lots of advice on it. Properly incorporating the quotations and acknowledging the sources your information or ideas were obtained from is the major difference between research and plagiarism. While you absolutely need the first, you must certainly avoid the latter, but there’s a thin line between the two, determined by rules and requirements that are not easy to understand.

In an essay, unless required otherwise, you can emphasize personal opinion and experience without having to use any external sources, to quote or cite anything. If you accidentally plagiarize someone else’s personal opinion, you are likely to avoid any serious punishment. In scholarly writing, all this is simply not possible. While you are required to use the works of others to strengthen your academic argument, the responsibility for clearly distinguishing between your own thoughts or ideas, and those of others is significantly higher. The traps and pitfalls that can result in being accused of plagiarism are numerous. A proper bibliography or reference list is required, as well as in-text citations and quotation marks around anything borrowed directly from another author. Poor paraphrasing without the content attributed to its original source, failing to acknowledge the sources through in-text citations or direct quotes is considered to be plagiarism, even when being absolutely unintentional. Simply inserting the information obtained from other sources into your work is poor writing style, too. You need to specify and explain why or how exactly it relates to your ideas and supports your arguments. This is an area where the help of an expert is most needed if you don’t feel confident enough about proofreading your work on your own and making sure all your sources are properly cited.