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10 Bomb Messages Students Hide In Essays To Get A+

10 Bomb Messages Students Hide In Essays To Get A+

What is the worst nightmare of your college life?

Exams? Strict educators? Tons of books to read?

Have another think coming.

Essays!

“I am a master of academic writing! Give me a topic, and I will write your essay like a boss!”, said no student ever.

Your humble narrator is not an exception.

When a student, I hated writing essays. I didn’t like the rules of academic writing, aka particular structure, style, references, and arguments. Agree, it’s hard to love writing when they say what to write, how to write, what words to use, and what pals to cite. My essays made me sound unemotional, and they didn’t let me express myself in writings. The thing is, I wrote essays to please professors and get high grades. (I bet, most students have the same motivation.) My essays were award-winning from professors’ perspective, and they were not difficult to write, following one and the same structure.

To write an essay, they ask you to:

  • choose one topic from several given ones
  • do research
  • write an outline
  • write an introduction, three paragraphs with arguments and counterarguments, and a conclusion
  • follow APA or MLA styles
  • make a list of references.

The problem is, such essays can play Old Harry with students who don’t want to lose their creativity. Some fellows kick against the rules and hide secret messages in essays to express their individualities, awesomeness, and creative natures.

And here comes the paradox:

These hidden messages help those students please a teacher and get A+ in spite of breaking rules of academic writing. For instance, once I’ve written the one-line essay on the topic If You Could Live in a Different Country:

“If I could live in a different country, you would not read or understand this essay, because I know vous ne parlez pas français.”

Yes, it’s stupid. You won’t believe but I’ve got an A for it. And yes, don’t try writing anything like that every time you get a dull topic to discuss.

You better try hiding some less stupid messages in your essays to express yourself, develop your personal writing style, but still get high grades from your academic professors.

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1. Use Power Words

Your professors want you to sound intelligent, don’t they? Okay, let’s please them and hide several power words in your essay.

What does it give you?

  • You focus on using language effectively.
  • You avoid using the same words over and over again.
  • You toy with teachers’ emotions.

What are power words? They are words that trigger emotions. Just take a look at Winston Churchill’s writing passage, and you’ll see power words causing fear and hope. Their mix toys with our emotions, making us feel, sympathize, and react somehow.

power-essays-words

    Hide power words in your essays, and they can help to get on the right side of your professor.

    2. Change Your Tone

    Your professors want you to sound academically in your essays, don’t they? To please them but still express yourself, you can change your tone of voice a bit. Yes, essays are formal, but it doesn’t mean they should be boring.

    What does it give you?

    • You stand out from your fellows.
    • You don’t hide your personality.
    • You make a professor see you have a voice.

    i-have-a-voice

      Use a confident tone of voice, make sure to write clear words and short sentences to express your thoughts, and don’t sound like a dictionary of unpronounceable terms.

      3. Start Essays With Inspiring Quotes

      Your professors want an essay hook from you, don’t they? Consider hiding a quote to create the initial impact on them. Make sure this quote lays the foundation to the main idea of your essay.

      What does it give you?

      • You make an essay more interesting and promising.
      • You demonstrate your erudition.
      • You give a point to your essay.
      • You establish credibility.

      Make sure you hide inspiring quotes in your essays, as they help you go up in professors estimation.

      Example:

      Mahatma Gandhi once said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

      4. Try K-rule

      And here comes a trickier message for you to hide in essays. The so-called K-rule assumes that k-sound words are perceived as the funniest ones. It doesn’t mean you should write a funny essay, but hiding some k-sound words in it might play for your hand.

      Don’t you know that comedy writers use the K-rule to create texts for amusing their readers? The trick is, you consider the text cool but you don’t understand why. So, why not to try practicing this rule to your works?

      P.S. Re-read the last paragraph. You haven’t even noticed how many k-sound words I used to write it ;-)

      5. Makeup Your Language

      Some students go further. They hide messages written in foreign languages, when appropriate.

      Like this guy:

      “There was a section where you were supposed to listen to a song and answer a free response about the form of the piece. The song was a freakin’ kpop anthem. So, I wrote the free response half in made-up Korean, along with translations underneath (which resembled entries in a bad Asian restaurant menu, grammar and all). Which is even funnier because my AP music teacher is Korean … still got a 5.” Source: Reddit

      Not legit enough? What about this essay in elvish?

      elvish-essay

        Not sure if that dude got A+ for it, but you could try the same trick to please a professor with a sense of humor or the one with languages as a hobby.

        6. Add Humor

        Students become so creative when it comes to boring subjects. Instead of begging custom services for help, they use humor in writings to surprise those reading them.

        What does it give you?

        • You stand out.
        • You match wits with fellows.
        • If your professor reveals a message, you’ll get an A by all means. If not, you still can become an Internet star. Like this guy, for example:

        funny-essays

          Physics has never seemed so exciting, hasn’t it?

          7. Break Essays Structure

          No guts, no glory. Who else but students understand that better than others? With an academic essay expecting a strict structure, it might seem strange to risk and break it. But big chances are, the result will be worth an effort.

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          What can you do to break an essay structure but still please professors?

          Write your essay as if it was a blog post:

          • It will oil the path but still let you express thoughts and arguments.
          • It will make your essay easy to read and understand.
          • It will make you love writing (well, probably), as you blog a lot on social media and online communities anyway.

          8. Change Font

          We all know that texts are perceived differently when online and printed. With that in mind, students change fonts of their essays depending on a version their professors need.

          Thus, if you print your essay then use Times New Roman or Georgia.

          If they ask for mobile version then Verdana, Arial, or Colibri will be your best choice.

          Or, you can express your individuality by choosing exotic fonts for your essay, unless otherwise stated. But make sure it looks well when printed. Otherwise, you’ll get something like this:

          essay-font

            When handwriting essays, some students use the following trick to hide a knowledge gap:

            “When I took AP US history I couldn’t remember which amendment abolished slavery, so I made the number look like really bad hand writing. I got a 5.” Source: Reddit

            It’s up to you to decide if it’s worth trying.

            9. The Rule of Three

            To stand out from others, hide a message following the rule of three.

            What is that? It’s when you pair two like ideas and suddenly add a third, incongruent one.

            Why three? It’s a number most people can easily remember.

            What does it give you?

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            • You’ll get a clever way to establish a pattern.
            • You’ll misdirect readers, hooking them at the same time.
            • You’ll make a professor see your individuality.

            i-have-a-voice

              Examples:

              “I can’t think of anything worse after a night of drinking than waking up next to someone and not being able to remember their name, or how you met, or why they’re dead.” – Laura Kightlinger

              “Losing weight is simple: eat less, exercise more, and pay NASA to let you live in an anti-gravity chamber.” – Unknown

              “I celebrated Thanksgiving in an old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.” – Jon Stewart

              10. Sharpen It

              Writing like a boss doesn’t mean writing like a crazy typist ready for everything to reach a words limit. Hide shorten words in your essays to vary language, sharpen it, and show a professor that you deliver more of the nuts and bolts than simple wordiness.

              Examples:

              cut-words-essays

                Impress with meaning rather than length.

                Did you ever hide messages in essays? How did it help to impress professors, stand out from fellows, and get high grades for academic writing?

                Share your thoughts in comments!

                Featured photo credit: Alifemostordinary.com via alifemostordinary.com

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                Last Updated on January 15, 2019

                How to Talk to Strangers Without Feeling Awkward

                How to Talk to Strangers Without Feeling Awkward

                Many of us feel awkward talking to strangers. I’m a very outgoing person, even though I sometimes feel uncomfortable walking up to someone and asking a question or starting a conversation. I consider myself pretty high up on the extrovert meter. So what is it that makes us pause and become worried or anxious about talking to people we don’t know?

                In this article, we will discuss why we feel this way as well as some tips on how to talk to strangers without feeling awkward.

                Step right up, don’t be shy!

                Why We Feel Awkward Talking to Strangers

                The next time you feel uncomfortable talking to a stranger, tell yourself that’s completely normal. There are numerous reasons why it’s actually natural to feel awkward talking to strangers:

                Our Stress Levels Rise Around Strangers

                Numerous studies have show that our levels of cortisol go up when we are around strangers.[1] Cortisol is the hormone inside of us which produces stress responses.[2]
                So there you go, right off the bat you can see part of your standard response to strangers is due to a chemical reaction!

                A very interesting by product of increased cortisol is that it makes us less empathetic. More than likely this can be traced to our evolution. The increase in the cortisol and the corresponding decrease in empathy makes us want to stay away from strangers. We are biologically wired to feel concern around strangers.

                Evolution Taught Us to Be Wary

                Evolution has also taught us to be wary of strangers in general. Humans as a whole have spent a large chunk of their history banded together in small protective groups. We did this in order to help protect each other and maximize resources.

                When you think about it in this context, outsiders to our small groups or strangers are considered potential threats. Fear of strangers is common across almost all human cultures.

                Culturally Conditioned

                We can also thank our society for helping us feel uncomfortable and sometimes afraid of strangers. The term “stranger danger” is something most of us can relate to either growing up or raising kids. Or both.

                I remember hearing this from my parents, mostly about not getting in someone’s car I didn’t know. And as the father of 2 teenage girls, you can be sure I’ve talked to them about this very concept more times that they want to hear.

                The thought that strangers can be dangerous is built into us as it is. Toss in the amplification of the media on strangers doing things such as kidnapping kids and it takes it to an even higher level.

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                Now that we’ve reviewed some of the reasons why we are nervous, let’s look at why you should talk to strangers more.

                Benefits of Getting over the Awkwardness

                Let’s take a quick look at some of the advantages of how to talk to strangers without feeling awkward. These are some high level benefits of talking to strangers.

                1. Broadens Your Network

                After you talk to someone, you didn’t know previously they become someone you know at least a little bit. This alone helps broaden your network of people you know. This is helpful in many ways whether it is work related or socially related.

                2. Improves Your Communication Skills

                I am a huge proponent of the value of solid communication skills and have written about it often. The more you talk to people, especially people you don’t know, the better your communication skills become.

                Interacting with a wider variety of people will bring the added benefit of improving your communication skills.

                3. Continually Learning

                So many of us don’t actively seek to learn new things. This is one of the primary keys to staying engaged in life and our own personal self fulfillment.

                Almost every time I speak to someone I didn’t know previously, I’ve learned something new. When we speak to strangers, it pushes us out of our comfort zones and we tend to learn new things.

                4. Increases Self Confidence

                Every time we learn to do something we were previously anxious about, we feel better about ourselves.

                Forcing ourselves to talk to strangers will lead to increased self confidence. As we get more and more comfortable doing something that previously made us feel awkward, our self confidence will go up and up.

                So, how to talk to strangers to reap these benefits?

                How to Talk to Strangers

                Here are some tips to on how to talk to strangers without feeling awkward.

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                1. Say Hello

                Putting “say hello” first may seem a bit obvious but let’s take a deeper look. Much of the social awkwardness when speaking to strangers is simply breaking the ice. The first words that will engage someone.

                Most people will respond when someone says hello or hi to them. And those that don’t, you probably don’t want to talk to anyway.

                Practice being the person that opens the door to a conversation. Say hello.

                2. Ask About Them

                Something that I have noticed over the years is that people love to talk about themselves. Even fairly private people tend to open up when asked about events in their lives.

                You can ask leading questions that get people to talk about themselves and recent events. Things like recent movies watched or the summer vacation are great to get someone talking.

                As a father, I also know that people love to talk about their kids. Asking about kids is a fairly easy topic to bring up and in general, most people will expound upon all the great things their kids do or are involved with.

                3. Just Do It

                One of the biggest reasons we don’t do things we want to or know we should is because we overthink it. Quit thinking about it so much and just do it.

                When you give yourself the time to analyze every little angle about a situation, you also give plenty of time to talk yourself out of it. You’ll wind up thinking what if this happens or what if that happens.

                Try to force yourself to jump right in without thinking about it too much. Whenever I have done this, I always feel great about it afterwards, no matter how it turned out.

                4. Don’t Take It Personal

                One of the greatest lessons in life I ever learned was don’t take anything personally. We all go through life with our own sets of experiences and see things through our own lens. The way people react to different situations has almost nothing to do with us. It has to do with previous experiences and the way people feel about things other than us.

                When someone’s reaction isn’t what you’d hoped or expected, chances are it has nothing to do with you. Remember that and keep it in context.

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                5. Get a Chuckle If Possible

                I used the word chuckle purposely because it makes me laugh. In my opinion, it’s one of those funny words. We all like to laugh because it makes us feel good. And when someone makes us laugh, we typically remember those people in a positive light.

                One of the best ways to make a conversation easy and free flowing is to get some laughter going. It doesn’t mean you have to be the master joke teller or anything. See if you can work in a way to make the person you are talking to get a smile or some laughter in. In fact, laughing at yourself maybe a nice try.

                6. Detach

                A great feeling is when you don’t mind which way something turns out, that you will be fine no matter what happens. Kind of like when I watch my two favorite football teams play against each other. I don’t really care who wins, I just want a fun game.

                Treat talking to strangers the same way. You don’t really care how the conversation goes because you are detaching from the outcome. Make it a fun time with yourself and if the conversation goes well, awesome! If not then no big deal, move on.

                7. Share Your Stories

                Well, all like to feel connected to other people. And many times we wind up hanging out with people that we have things in common with. No surprise here.

                To help with how to talk to strangers without feeling awkward, tell stories that have commonalities with the person you are talking to. Kids are an easy one. I have a daughter who was a competitive cheerleader and now plays club volleyball. I have instant connection and stories with strangers I speak with who have kids that play sports. It’s easy to relate to.

                So when you are speaking to a stranger and you have a story or mutual connection point, bring it up.

                8. Give a Compliment

                Almost everyone likes hearing a compliment, whether they admit to it or not. As a general rule, we don’t give out enough compliments. It’s amazing how one small remark someone tosses your way about how good you look can literally make your entire day.

                When you are speaking with someone you don’t know, see if you can work a compliment in. Nothing creepy here. Not a good idea to tell someone you just met that they are the prettiest or handsomest person you ever met. However, if you can share how you like their tattoo or shoes or something like that, it will help put the conversation into an easy going, smiling place.

                9. Relax Your Body Language

                If you go into a situation all worried and nervous, it shows on your body. Your shoulders are tensed up, there’s a look of consternation on your face, things like that.

                When you engage a stranger in conversation, make it a point to relax your body language. Take a deep breath before you engage the person, let your body relax, and put a smile on your face. This will help relax you and it has the added benefit of putting the other person more at ease.

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                If they see that you are relaxed, it helps them relax. Plus having open, engaging body language is very conducive to inviting someone to open up into a conversation with you.

                10. Practice, Practice, Practice

                Like everything else in life, talking to strangers gets easier with practice. The more you do it, the easier it becomes.

                Make it a point to talk to several strangers each week and it will definitely help you relax as you do it more and more.

                After a while, it will become something you don’t even think about, you just do it. And that takes all of the awkwardness out of being in these type situations.

                The Bottom Line

                As we have seen, it is perfectly natural to feel awkward talking to strangers. We are biologically built that way and we have our own society constantly warning us how dangerous it is. It’s no wonder we feel awkward talking to strangers!

                There are numerous benefits to learning to be more comfortable talking to strangers. See if you can employ some of the techniques mentioned to learn how to talk to strangers without feeling awkward.

                Once you start practicing speaking with strangers more often and utilizing some of the tips, you will become more comfortable doing so. This in turn will lead to a learned new skill and increased self confidence.

                Remember, everyone you know was a stranger at one time. Now get out there and make some new friends.

                More Resources About Strengthening Communication Skills

                Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

                Reference

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