How to improve your handwriting admin February 9, 2016 How to improve your handwriting2016-02-09T09:50:44+00:00 Education No Comment We talk to a couple of recent prizewinners on the topic of handwriting to discover how easy it is to improve your writing and thus avoid losing unnecessary marks in the exams ‘Handwriting still remains a problem for some.’ ‘If markers cannot read what a candidate has written no marks can be awarded.’ ‘Illegible handwriting and poor layout of answers is a common feature of students’ scripts.’ ‘What we cannot read we cannot mark.’ ‘Illegible handwriting and inadequate presentation helped to add to the unsatisfactory pass rates.’ These are all real comments from examiners following the past few sittings – comments that continue to highlight the problem of poor handwriting as an important issue – and an area that continues to let down trainees in the exam hall. Trainees are constantly reminded that too many exam scripts are unreadable – and clearly candidates are more likely to be losing valuable marks if the markers can’t read their scripts. The examiners for Papers F7, F8, P3 and P4, P7 are among those in recent sittings to complain about poor handwriting. The question is, what can be done to improve handwriting and what do prizewinning trainees themselves recommend? Improve your writing The starting point for trainees who are unsure of the legibility of their handwriting is to check with lecturers and peers as to whether it is generally regarded as acceptable. Melanie Jolliffe, winner of the bronze medal at the December 2013 exam sitting, says: ‘As my handwriting is quite legible I didn’t need to ask for advice and I certainly never got any feedback to say that lecturers were having difficulty reading my writing. However, I would ask for their advice and feedback if I felt it would benefit me. ‘Lecturers read your handwriting when you hand in homework assignments, so they are in a great position to give you feedback. Furthermore, a third party or different pair of eyes will give you impartial and independent advice as you may think your writing is fine as you are used to reading it.’ If you agree to improve your handwriting skills, there are a number of simple tips that can put you back on the right course with tidy and legible writing. Experiment The first thing to do is experiment with different styles of pen until you find a type and style that works for you. There is of course a raft of different sized nibs or balls that give a variety of thicknesses. Look for a pen that is comfortable to hold and where the ink flows smoothly without your having to push too hard on the paper. The right pen can also save you valuable time in the exam. If you are left-handed, buy a specially designed left-hand pen. Also, check your grip because it should be light yet supportive and there should be no undue tension in your hand position and no squeezing. Get comfortable You then need to consider whether your posture is right – after all, you will be sat still for several hours. You should sit up straight yet relaxed, with your non-writing fingers curled under your hand and your hand position resting lightly on the table. Once you have a comfortable writing position in the exam, try not to alter your alignment too much. When it becomes awkward to move your hand position down the page to write the next line, try moving your answer paper up instead of your hand. Having the right pen, correct grip, and good posture is worth nothing if you are drawing the letters with your fingers. Strange as it sounds, you should not be using your wrist and fingers to write – that leads to cramped, stilted writing, as well as fatigue. In the run up to exams take every opportunity to write longhand instead of on a keyboard. Write out to-do lists rather than printing out using a computer, and start maintaining a journal. Practice makes perfect Practicing your handwriting for a few minutes each day should help you start to see improvements quite quickly. Rebekah Debono, the silver medallist at the December 2013 exam sitting, tells Student Accountant: ‘I think that good handwriting is very important in exams. You could write an excellent answer to a question, but if the marker can’t make out what you’ve written because your handwriting is illegible, then you won’t pick up any marks. ‘Writing for three hours can be really hard work on your hand and wrist, so practising lots of exam questions prior to the exam date helps you to write quickly and clearly (using particular layouts). It is very easy in exams to get carried away and your writing then gets messier and larger. I have found myself doing this on many occasions in an exam and then realised I needed to make my writing tidier.’ ‘I don’t think the key is writing beautifully, it’s writing clearly so that the marker can read what you’ve written. I definitely think you could easily lose marks if the marker cannot read what you’ve written.’ Jolliffe agrees. She adds: ‘I practised a lot of exam questions during revision and this helps improve your handwriting especially under stress and time pressure which mirrors the exam environment. I also completed many questions under exam conditions (ie in the time allocated to you in the real exam) to make sure my handwriting was still legible under pressure. Top tips for better handwriting ( http://www.accaglobal.com/an/en/student/sa/features/improve-handwriting.html) • Write from your shoulders rather than from your fingers. Putting the stress on the forearms and shoulder not only enables you to write better but it will also increase speed in the exam hall • Writing in the air can be a good start to improve your handwriting. Handwriting generally becomes bad because the muscle groups of the hand and palm are not trained well. Writing fake sentences in the air trains your hand muscles, which in turn improves handwriting • Bad writing is a result of poor drawing of shapes. Letters and alphabets are nothing but shapes and so by practicing drawing these shapes will lead to improved writing. Spend some time to fill the paper with lines, shapes such as squares and circles • Source a sample of a good handwriting that you can keep as an example of what to imitate • The size of your handwriting is something that should be kept in mind while writing. If the size is small, then your style automatically becomes illegible – larger writing tends to be easier for examiners to read. Source: http://www.accaglobal.com/an/en/student/sa/features/improve-handwriting.html Importance of Good handwriting Hand writing is an art which is solely, performed through fingers. The art of handwriting has been a primary concern for many educationalists, for a long time many researches have been made for the development of writing skills. A good handwriting is a sign of success, it speaks volumes about your personality and adds value too, while bad handwriting reflects as being lazy and careless. A bad handwriting can result in : • Low Self Esteem • Low Marks • Inability To Take Down Notes • Evading Of School Work • Loss Of Motivation • Weaken Educational Progress • Frustration To Exams • Slow Down Progress An improved Handwriting ensures that the students 1. Get better scores in exams (10-15% improvement in marks) 2. Have self recognition & self satisfaction. 3. Gain confidence level. 4. Add value to their personality. 5. Increase creative skills. 6. It is considered as a onetime investment on the child to reap the benefits. Handwriting & personality A person’s handwriting does indicate his/her energy level, emotional state, loyalty, thinking pattern, achievements, skills, goal orientation, level of deceit, signs of procrastination, depression and impatience among other significant traits. Thus, we can say handwriting is the mirror of our personality. To conclude, your writing if analyzed will speak volumes about you as a person. Research has ascertained that by changing handwriting one could change one’s attitude and personality. It is much easy and effective to change the mindset at tender and young age by improving their handwriting. Source/Credit: http://www.centreofexcellence.in/importance_of_good_handwriting.php Related Posts Greenlife Pharmaceuticals & Organizers of Rising Star Writing Competition Reward Winners with Fantastic Prizes. Winners in the 3rd Edition of Rising Star Writing Competition Announced.