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40 Most Common Mistakes Students Make When Writing Their College Essays

Thu, Oct 20th, 2022

Writing academic essays can be a complete drag, even for the best of students. To keep you on your toes, here are 40 of the most common mistakes students make when writing their college essays.


1.      Using contractions.

2.      Misuse of their, they’re, and there

3.      Incomplete sentences

4.      Writing a summary instead of an analysis

5.      Wrong or Inconsistent tense

6.      Using “you”

7.      Spelling errors

8.      Missing in-text citations

9.      Wrong heading levels

10.  Missing or weak thesis statement

11.  References formatted incorrectly

12.  APA/MLA formatting errors

13.  Quoting instead of paraphrasing

14.  Procrastinating

15.  Incorrect title page

16.  Not proofreading before submission

17.  Typing “running head” on second page header

18.  Not following directions

19.  Run-on Sentences

20.  Incorrect/missing punctuation

21.  Spacing and indention errors

22.  Not capitalizing proper nouns

23.  Capitalizing improper nouns

24.  Subject/Verb agreement errors

25.  Misusing semi-colons

26.  Using informal language

27.  Mis-titling papers

28.  Not citing source correctly

29.  Improperly formatted reference page

30.  Using clichés

31.  Using passive voice

32.  Repeating the introduction as the conclusion

33.  Unclear introduction or conclusion

34.  No supporting examples

35.  Going over/under the word count

36.  Comma misuse

37.  Being too wordy

38.  Misuse of Its and It’s

39.  Colon mistakes

40.  Using passive voice


Can you think of more errors to add to the list? Leave a comment below.



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