View Full Version : Help me maximise my writing

2011-07-25, 07:40 AM
Sorry if this is the wrong Forum. It seems appropriate but I don't know.

Here is the problem: I can't write at length, I seem to get all my information out in about 1/5 of the space/words as everyone else I know.

It sucks cause I am always being told in class to "extend your answers." or "explain more in-depth" when I have covered all the major points in 2-3 sentences.

So how can I make my writing longer?

2011-07-25, 07:48 AM
I find for that it's best to put yourself in the mindset of the marker. The only way they have to tell if you know anything is what you tell them. So, tell them everything - all the details, justifications and exceptions, and also tell them the holes in your argument and thinking and how you'd respond to them. You've got to show them that you've thought of everything. If you can't think of anything else, come up with an example; teachers love examples.

It's not about getting the right answer. It's about showing you have comprehensive knowledge of how to apply the answer.

2011-07-25, 10:55 AM
imagine that you have to explain it to someone who has NO background whatsoever. You aren't showing the teacher you have the knowledge, you are teaching someone else the material.

2011-07-25, 01:46 PM
If all else fails, pad it out. Don't be obvious about it, but using more elaborate wording or sentences or "structuring your texts" can make them seem long enough not to trigger the teacher's "Gah this is too short!" tic.

It would help if you could give an example, though. As in, to us. An example of a question, how you answered it, and what kind of answer was expected.

2011-07-25, 04:21 PM
Break up your points into separate sections, and don't be afraid to cover the same ground in two sections. In fact, jump at the opportunity to do so.
Showing how one facet of the text relates and interacts with another is very important in its understanding.

As suggested above: demonstrate what you say with relevant material.
Examples are also a good way to link different sections of the text together and give a more rounded/developed impression of whatever it is you're discussing.
(can you see what i'm trying to do here?)

You may find that what you're writing at the moment is more like a summary. A quick review of the most important issues and insights. Don't let that go to waste - make sure you drive home the important aspects.
As an example, consider the two paragraphs above and notice how i've repeated the idea of identifying points separately, and then linking them together in both sections. I'm now ending on the same idea as it's the focus of this whole piece.


Now obviously there's limits, and the above may begin to become tedious and superfluous but for that you can blame the subject matter :P
Regardless, it would still be considered more in-depth than the below.


Try to section your points of into different parts, and then make links between them. Examples are a good way really demonstrate these links.
Remember to include a summary as well, you can use that to make sure the important bits are noticed.

2011-07-26, 09:20 PM
Thanks for all the help guys (/girls).
I'll keep this stuff in mind in my next test.

2011-07-27, 10:24 AM
no sweat. as was stated, some examples would probably help us be more specific as well.