3.1 Some useful strategies
In the next activity you will look in more detail at the challenges often faced by students and the strategies they can use to complete an essay.
In the videos below, three students describe their writing process. They also mention the challenges they face and some of the strategies they use. Watch the videos and identify the challenges and strategies each student uses. Note them in the boxes below before comparing your answers with mine.
- Writing too many words
- Risk of not answering the question
- Reading the question
- Reading in order to find answers to the question
- First writing everything you know, then revising it
- Not enjoying essay writing
- Using the structure given by the assignment
- Writing thoughts about each section
- Revising the answer many times
- Circular revision process: rereading, rewriting, reviewing, rereading …
- Stopping when the answer has been answered properly and completely
- Becoming too used to his answer
- First, making a list of key points
- Then, carefully arranging these points
- Writing the first draft
- Asking someone else to read this draft
Coping with university writing is about developing strategies that help to meet a range of challenges. These students seem to have been successful in essay writing despite the various challenges they mention. They have dealt with those challenges by adopting strategies for planning what they are going to write, structuring the content of their essays and reviewing the text over and over again.