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10 Editing Apps and Tools to Nurture Great Writers

10 Editing Apps and Tools to Nurture Great Writers

By Antonio Tooley

reading too much? Whooos ReadingAs teachers and educators, it’s our job to arm students with all the necessary skills and knowledge to help them take on the challenge that is the real world. One of the most crucial skills we need to teach them is writing.

Despite being enthusiastic, eager, impressionable, and creative, students are also easily distracted, and somewhat careless when it comes paying attention to details.

Problems with sentence structure, vocabulary, grammar and spelling are just some of the poor writing habits students acquire along their educational journey.

Fortunately, modern technology can help us facilitate the process of correcting these mistakes. The following list contains 10 carefully selected editing tools that will help your students polish their writing.

1. Cold Turkey

The majority, if not all, of your students do their writing on computers, and that means the Internet is available, where there are plenty of distracting websites to be visited. Cold Turkey is a tool that prevents your students from accessing distracting webpages, so they can focus their attention on work.

The best feature about Cold Turkey is that it’s almost impossible to shut down, even for those students who are tech-savvy, making it easier to ensure they stay focused.

More: 7 Tools for Classroom Document Management

2. Visual Thesaurus

A rich vocabulary helps students avoid repeating words and phrases, which will ultimately improve their writing skills. Instead of having students rummage through dictionaries, give them a chance to use the Visual Thesaurus. This is an interactive tool that uses visual maps to get its users to learn new words.

3. Grammarly

Encourage your students to use Grammarly before they turn in their essays and written assignments. Grammarly is one of the best apps for editing, designed to scan documents and detect the most common grammar and spelling mistakes.

Still, this tool does a lot more than that. It’s also able to spot if words are placed in the wrong context, even if they’re spelled correctly. Furthermore, the app provides suggestions to improve the overall quality of the work submitted.

4. Correctica

While Grammarly does a great job, extra proofreading is always helpful, especially for your students that struggle with writing the most. Correctica prides itself on being able to spot grammar and spelling errors missed by its competitors, and has been able to find more than 254,000 such mistakes, even on websites that most people would expect to be spotless, such as The New York Times, the CDC, or even Harvard.

More: 20 Reading and Writing Apps for the Classroom

5. Typewrite

If your students are working in groups, they need a powerful and efficient collaborative writing that’s both intuitive and easy to use. Typewrite offers all of this, in addition to Markdown formatting, which enables students to apply style changes to their work more easily. It also allows for real-time collaborative editing, version tracking, and the ability to sync with Dropbox.

6. Prowriting Aid

Another important goal of editing, apart from fixing grammar and spelling errors, is to improve the readability of one’s work, which ProWritingAid allows students to do.

This powerful tool will enable them to eliminate or fix the most common errors, such as the use of passive voice and overuse of certain words. It also makes note of wordiness, repetitiveness, clichés, vague phrasing and overly complex sentences.

7. The Readability Test Tool

Another editing tool that earns our recommendation is The Readability Test Tool. Students simply upload their work and wait for the app to analyze its readability. Afterward, the piece is then assigned a rating, based on its algorithms.

If the readability indicator bar is green, that means the text is easily readable. If it’s red, it means to text is too difficult to read and could use simplification.

8. Hemingway

The Hemingway app, a browser-based app, helps students make their writing more concise. It scans text and detects sentences that are either too complex or too long, and breaks them up into smaller ones.

It also highlights the overuse of adjectives in your student’s work, and points out where they have relied on clichés to explain a certain point.

9. Cliché Finder

Clichés offer very little in terms of new information for the reader. With Cliché Finder, students simply paste their work into the box and click the “Find Clichés” button to see where they may be using these phrases. They can read through the list of clichés on the website for future reference.

More: 5 Research-Paper Tools for You and Your Students

10. Plagiarism Checker

Plagiarism Checker is a tool that can be used by both teachers and students. You or your students upload documents in standard formats, or paste the text directly into the app, and it will check it for plagiarism. Students can then come up with a more original way of interpreting what they’ve read or go back and cite their sources properly.

Writing is a skill that should be learned and perfected constantly and you can help your students move through that process with these editing tools. They will be able to hone their writing skills, turn in papers of superior quality, and get better grades—everyone benefits.

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