As a student or academic researcher, you probably have numerous projects. Academic writing checklists help organize and edit papers, allowing you to produce flawless, high-quality work.1 So, it is important to understand the different checklists used for various academic tasks.
Definition: Academic writing checklists
Academic writing checklists streamline academic writing by ensuring that a research paper adheres to all academic conventions.1
Academic writing checklists: College applications
- I filled in my personal information.
- I highlighted my accomplishments.
- I sent in my SAT’s scores.
- I included my admission test scores.
- I presented my recommendation letters.
- I answered the college-specific questions.
- I presented the required essays.
- I sent a portfolio of my talents.
- I paid my application fees.
- I filled in my financial aid information.
- I signed and sent in my application.
- I informed the colleges I rejected.
- I proofread my application documents.
- I created a balanced college list.
- I made copies of my application documents.
College admissions essay academic writing checklists
- Shares who I am.
- Shows my abilities.
- Demonstrates my experience.
- Answers the questions asked.
- Shows my values and accomplishments.
- Meets the desired word count.
- Is proofread.
- Is edited.
- I got a second opinion on my essay.
- Uses the correct format and structure.
- Free of grammatical errors and plagiarism.
- Uses credible sources.
Statement of purpose academic writing checklists
- Aligns with the prompt.
- Highlights my background.
- Shows my relevant experience.
- Shows my key achievements.
- Shows the correlation between my previous experience and plans.
- Centres around one idea.
- Shows the aspects of the facility that impressed me.
- Demonstrates specific aspects of the program that impressed me.
- Explains how the program will help me in my future endeavours.
- Is proofread and revised.
- I got a second opinion.
- Is tailored to the institution’s needs.
Essay topic academic writing checklists
- Reflects my passions.
- Demonstrates my academic qualifications.
- Aligns with the institution’s requirements.
- Follows the right structure.
- Was approved by a tutor or academic expert.
- Is authentic and unique.
- Reflects my interests.
- Explores a period of personal growth.
- Reflects a holistic image of the writer.
- Shows my artistic abilities.
- Has no grammatical errors.
- Demonstrates a problem I have solved.
Academic writing checklists: Source credibility
- Author is an expert in the relevant field.
- Uses technical terms.
- The author is affiliated with a recognized institution.
- Free of grammatical errors.
- Includes a reference list
- Based on verifiable facts.
- Shows no bias.
- Addresses a particular audience.
- Appeals to the reader’s logic.
- Has an informative general look.
- Demonstrates the author’s purpose.
Academic writing checklists: Dissertation
- Clearly-described methodology.
- The title page has university details.
- Includes an acknowledgement section
- Abstract has clear arguments and ideas.
- Has a table of contents.
- Introduction has relevant research questions.
- Has a literature review.
- Explains my theoretical framework.
- Demonstrates my data collection and analysis.
- Includes results.
- Discusses the meaning of the outcomes.
- Conclusions answer the main research question.
- Explains the implications of my conclusion.
- Has appendices.
- Includes a bibliography.
Abstract academic writing checklists
- Not longer than one page.
- Illustrates what the dissertation entails.
- Excludes references.
- Only includes text.
- Has a brief outline of the methodology.
- Demonstrates research’s implications.
Tables academic writing checklists
- Formatted consistently.
- Labeled tables.
- Relevant to research.
- All tables are discussed.
- Formatted appropriately.
- Includes research questions.
- Includes the research purpose.
- Demonstrates the importance of the dissertation.
Results academic writing checklists
- Data was collected, and the results analyzed.
- Data was presented in graphs and tables.
- Presented in the correct format.
- Results address the research questions.
Discussion academic writing checklists
- Proper discussion and interpretation of results.
- States the limitation in my results.
- I restarted my research questions.
- Results are explained logically.
- Provides a summary of the key findings.
- Includes a conclusion based on the findings.
- Free of graphs and figures.
- Justifies my approach.
Recommendations for future research academic writing checklists
- Directly connected to the research in this dissertation.
- Aligns with key findings.
- Are “SMART”.2
Conclusion academic writing checklists
- All research questions are answered.
- Includes a summary of the main ideas of the dissertation.
- Has recommendations for future research.
- Reflects on my research process.
- Discusses the general findings of my research.
Appendix academic writing checklists
- Has a clear label and title.
- Has its page.
- Has a source.
- Aligns with the research findings and objectives.
- Formatted appropriately.
Academic writing checklists: Writing style
- I used appropriate connecting phrases to connect paragraphs.
- I used a consistent formatting style.
- My paragraphs begin with a topic sentence.
- All my paragraphs are connected.
- My introduction has a thesis statement.
- A list of references.
- In-text citations.
- I used active tense.
- My essay begins with a clear topic.
- My introduction is short and engaging.
- My conclusion is a summary of my research.
Academic writing checklists: Essays
- Uses formal terms.
- Doesn’t use redundant words.
- Uses simple language.
- Presents my information.
- Uses a consistent formatting style.
- Includes in-text citations.
- Includes a reference list.
- Correct number formatting.
- Has logical claims.
- Paragraphs are connected.
- Free of plagiarism.
- Zero-grammatical errors.
- Body supports my thesis statement.
- Starts paragraphs with a topic sentence.
- Every paragraph focuses on one idea.
Essay introduction academic writing checklists
- Defines important terms in the introduction.
- Introduction is engaging.
- Introduces the focus of the research in the introduction.
- Has a short and clear introduction
- Has a thesis statement in the introduction.
Academic writing checklists: Avoiding plagiarism
- In-text citations appear everywhere.
- Quotation marks used for direct quotations.3
- I proofread my work.
- I used an online tool to help me detect any plagiarism.
- I used my ideas.
- I used information that was common knowledge.
- I used direct quotations for 10% of my work.
Academic writing checklists: Formal emails
- Uses proper salutations and closings.
- Has a subject line.
- Has a short and precise message.
- Observes the correct structure.
- States purpose and engages the recipient.
Writing should be:
- Based on factual information
- Free of plagiarism
This is a checklist to help you organize and edit your written work.
A good editing checklist simplifies the editing and publication of your work.
1 The University of Sydney. “Types of academic writing.” October 26, 2022. https://www.sydney.edu.au/students/writing/types-of-academic-writing.html.
2 Feinstein, Osvaldo. “Checklist for Evaluation Recommendations.” 2019. https://wmich.edu/sites/default/files/attachments/u3036/2019/eval-rec-feinstein.pdf.
3 ACAP. “Reference in APA 7.” Accessed December 6, 2022. https://libguides.navitas.com/apa7/quotations.