Need to write a 7-page paper and have only 3 pages? Try some of the ideas below to expand your draft.
Ask yourself if you have addressed all the elements in the instructor's assignment sheet/prompt.
Ask yourself: Am I merely summarizing information? Does my paper not satisfy the "So what?" criteria? If so, try these techniques to add more of you own analysis and commentary:
Check out this resource to determine if your topic is too narrow, too broad or just right!
If your topic is too broad, you’ll find yourself writing a lot of general statements that don't say much. For example, in these sentences about the purpose of education in society, the writer isn’t really saying anything original:
This overly general topic produces nothing but boring sentences. We already know about the role of education in society. If the writer of the sentence above narrowed their topic and compared the ways students in private, Catholic schools are socialized differently from students in public schools in Los Angeles, the writer would have specific, interesting information to discuss.
Don’t be afraid to elaborate on and share specialized information only you may possess!
Don't assume you and your reader have the same background knowledge to understand everything from your perspective. This may produce "code phrases": highly generalized statements and descriptions that only hint at the complex understanding you have.
Below is an example of how code phrases can lead to generalizations:
Above, the writer tells us that Yoshitoshi's style is different from past Japanese artists, but doesn't tell us how they are different or elaborate on those differences. The writer makes what seems to be an important statement and then moves on to another point. The writer assumes we are "super readers" and know as much as she does about these two styles.
To cut out code words, go through your draft and select a code phrase that needs elaboration. Freewrite for five minutes to flesh out that code phrase and make it as vivid for the reader as it is for you.
Often a term has more than one meaning, depending on its context. Do not assume that your reader will know which definition of a term you are talking about. It may be necessary to define how you are using a particular key term.