Students often think that completing the word count limit of an essay is a difficult task. This notion is contrary to the reality because writers often exceed the word count limit. Exceeding the word count limit results in penalization and unnecessarily prolongs the essay. A skillful writer never exceeds the word count limit and conveys the message within the prescribed word count limit. There are many reasons for which writers exceed the word count limit, such as wordy and lengthy sentences. The appropriate use of language demonstrates that you can convey your thoughts within the required word limit. So, the important question is how you can reduce the word count during essay editing without affecting the quality of your essay. This article will answer your queries and tell you how you can reduce word count during essay editing.
What Steps Can You Take To Reduce The Word Count During Essay Editing?
Writing your essay within the prescribed word limit keeps your arguments coherent and keeps the scope of essay confined to the topic. Using too many wordy sentences clouds the judgment of your readers, and they might not be able to comprehend your arguments. Reducing the word count limit is not easy during essay editing. It is because the first thing that comes to your mind is that reducing the word count will compromise the quality of my essay. But that is not the case; you will have to think objectively and put aside your fears while doing essay editing. Reducing the word count will enhance the quality of your essay and clarify your arguments. You can take the following steps to reduce the word count limit during essay editing:
Shorten the Sentences
The first step in reducing the word count during essay editing is to shorten the length of your sentences. Remove the unnecessary phrases that prolong your sentences. Write clear and concise sentences that are specific and straightforward. Wordy sentences contain unnecessary details that affect the quality of sentences. Moreover, it makes the sentences hard to read, and readers have difficulty understanding your arguments. An effective strategy is to start sentences with the subject to make it obvious to the readers what the sentence is about. Starting your sentences with the subject makes your sentences clear. For example:
- It was identified that after the therapy, several changes started to emerge.
- Several changes started to emerge after the therapy
The second sentence is much better and more precise than the first sentence. First of all, it signifies the same thing with fewer words. The second sentence is clear and concise. Secondly, the most important information of the sentence—that several changes started to emerge after the therapy—is in the beginning. In the first sentence, the first part—it was identified that after the therapy—is unnecessary and needs omission.
The next step you require to do in essay to reduce the word count is to remove excessive usage of “The.” Removing “The” from your essay will reduce the word count limit without affecting the quality of your essay. For example:
- The success of your career depends on both the hard work and the dedication.
(14 words, 73 characters)
- Revised: The success of your career depends on both hard work and dedication.
(12 words, 57 characters)
You can observe in the above-mentioned example how the omission of “The” reduced the word count. If you still have any confusion regarding this method, you can hire best essay editing services.
“That” is a word writers often overuse in their writing. Using “that” too many times in your essay unnecessarily adds to the word count. You can omit “that” from your writing during essay editing. For example:
- We found that voters that live in suburban areas vote for a candidate based on family values.
(17 words, 77 characters)
- We found voters living in suburban areas vote for a candidate based on family values.
(15 words, 71 characters)
Write Sentences In Active Voice
Writing sentences in a passive voice unnecessarily prolong them and makes them wordy. It is better to write sentences using active voice verbs. It clarifies the meaning of the sentences and makes them concise. You can reduce the word limit during essay editing and turn passive sentences into active sentences. Moreover, sentences constructed in a passive way impair the intended meaning of the sentences. For example:
- The treaty is being signed by the two diplomats
(9 words, 39 characters)
- The two diplomats are signing the treaty
(7 words, 34 characters)
Erase Unnecessary Adverbs and Adjectives
You can reduce the word count limit during essay editing by omitting the adverbs and adjectives. Adverbs add meaning to the verbs, and adjectives enhance the meaning of nouns. But some nouns and verbs do not need modification. Unnecessary usage of adverbs and adjectives prolongs essay sentences. You can erase unnecessary adverbs and adjectives to make your writing clear. For example:
Original: The entire experiment lasted for four months, and the results greatly enhanced the findings of the research.
(17 words, 92 characters)
Revised: The experiment lasted for four months, and the results enhanced the research findings.
(13 words, 74 characters)
Use Short Phrases
Writers often use phrases in writing to connect ideas or show a transition. Phrases are also common in signposting. You can shorten the phrases to reduce the word count during essay editing. For example:
- You can use “However” instead of “On the other hand”
- You can use “In contrast” instead of “On the contrary.”
- You can use “Therefore” instead of “It follows that”
Keep Your Sentences Limited To 25-30 Words
Sentences that exceed 30 words are considered long sentences and add to the word count without adding any meaning. You can shorten the length of your sentences to add meaning to your writing during essay editing. For example, if you write 50 words in one sentence, you can divide the sentence into parts. Use connectives or transition words to divide the sentence into two parts. You can also use Hemingway to help you identify long sentences and shorten them.
You can reduce the word count during essay editing without affecting the essay quality. You have to remove unnecessary phrases and words that prolong the sentences. Use shorter phrases and words to express the information in a few words. You can follow the above-mentioned guidelines for reducing the word count limit in your essays.