Here are some tips on how to make your English writing easier to read, understand and write:

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  1. Never write sentences without a verb (or action word such as play, read, work etc.). Writing sentences that don’t contain a verb makes it difficult for the reader to understand what you, the writer is trying to express in a sentence or a paragraph.
  2. Try not to start sentences with ‘and’ or ‘but’. Your writing will be much more ‘user-friendly’ if you connect related thoughts by using a semi-colon or a comma. That way your writing will flow better and be easier to understand.
  3. Don’t be afraid to use short sentences – ending with a full stop; followed by a new sentence commencing with a capital letter. Sentences that ramble on and on without being broken-up by a full stop or a comma are difficult for a reader to follow; particularly if he/she is not as familiar with the subject as you are.
  4. Try not to mix your tenses too much, jumping from present to past too frequently because this can confuse the reader. It’s best to stick to past tense wherever possible, rather than alternating between present and past tense.
  5. Try to use active rather than passive voice as much as possible because it makes your writing more dynamic and provides more clarity about what you, the author is trying to say:

For example: Passive Voice: the ball was kicked down the street by John.

Active Voice: John kicked the ball down the street. This is a much more dynamic and less vague statement.

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6. If you are doing a research study and are presenting examples to illustrate certain viewpoints in your Literature Review; try not to make vague statements like: It is alleged or research has shown, without identifying the research paper by citing the name of the researcher, the date when it was published and the research being referred to. If you do not do this, you are liable to be accused of plagiarism and being penalised. You must identify all your sources!

(By the way; If you have your thesis proofread and edited by Busy Bee Editing you are automatically at far less risk of committing plagiarism because of the number of changes we, as editors make in every manuscript, as your thesis or dissertation is then being presented in your own words, rather than a mass of random unidentified extracts from researchers).

I hope these hints have helped.

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