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Discovering The 9 Best Academic Writing Software to Improve Your Writing

Students often find writing challenging since it includes a lot of research. However, on the bright side, many academic writing software options make the work easy. With the tools available today, you only need to gather the ideas, and the software will take care of the rest. Since technology makes academic writing easy, this article contains a collection of software students can use.

Part 1. What is Academic Writing?

Academic writing is impersonal and formal writing that focuses on scholars. It is used to propose and prove an idea with factual evidence from previous research work and some additional research work. Some most common types of academic writing include:

  • Essays
  • Dissertations
  • Research papers.

All these academic writing pieces have a thesis statement; the whole layout and content are designed around that thesis statement with solid information.

Part 2. What is the Purpose of Academic Writing?

Academic writing aims to help scholars present their ideas, explain and persuade their ideas, and analyze research by constructing an effective argument with supporting material and references. Some other purposes of academic writing include preparing students for further studies and their professional careers.

Part 3. What are the main differences between Professional and Academic Writing?

The two most common types of writing include academic and professional writing. Academic writing is done for academic purposes, including giving an idea to students and presenting it in front of fellow researchers and professors. On the other hand, professional writing is targeted at business people, including clients, management, leaders, employees, etc. So, both types of writing have different purposes.

Both writing types use different styles, and the method/importance of referencing is also variable due to the varying audience. Lastly, there is a huge difference in the writer's experience here. The writer for academic writing is usually a beginner at practical writing, while professional writers have much more experience.

 Academic WritingProfessional Writing
Purpose of WritingExplaining the idea to readers to make them agreeConvey some information to the professionals in the workplace context
Writing styleDifferent writing styles include descriptive, critical, persuasive, and even analytical.The style here is clear and concise, so the information is delivered with the least wording.
AudienceThe audience is usually professors or students from the similar fieldsThe audience here usually includes your co-workers and people from other companies.
Writers’ experienceHere the writer does not have much writing experience and often is a beginner.The writers here have a lot of experience
References                                       Citing references perfectly is essential hereReferences may or may be cited.

With this comparison between these two types of writing, it is clear that following the layout, outline, and other parameters is essential since the target audience is critical in either case.

Part 4. What Software is Used to Write Academic Papers

Writing an academic paper is a whole process involving many steps, and the first step is gathering ideas and writing them in your words. Different tools are used for this phase since those tools increase your efficiency. Here are the top 3 software options for writing academic papers.

1. UPDF – Best Academic Writing Software on Mac and Windows with PDF Format

Academic papers are published and uploaded in PDF format, so working on a PDF file while writing them gives you more control over the formatting. UPDF makes the best software for academic writing on Mac and Windows since it comes with the following benefits:

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Best Academic Writing Software on Mac and Windows with PDF Format - PDF
  • Note-taking options while doing research.
  • UPDF Cloud allows accessing files on any device.
  • Printing and sharing papers without changing the formatting.
  • One license for all your devices.

2. Microsoft Word – Best Academic Writing Software on Mac and Windows with Word Format

If you want to try Word format for writing your academic paper and have no worries about the pricing of the software, then try Microsoft Word. It brings the old-school user interface experience that every student is aware of. However, it does not lack with it comes to the latest features since the best ones here include:

Ms Word
  • References and citations.
  • Exporting in different formats.
  • Print preview.
  • Writing formatting choices.

3. Google Docs – Best Free Academic Writing Software

Google Docs is the best choice for students who want online software for their academic writing needs. This online document editor is free for everyone and only requires a Google account. It comes with an interface much like Microsoft Word, but there are multiple latest features to it that you may not find in other tools, including:

Google Docs – Best Free Academic Writing Software
  • Collaboration option with activity tracking.
  • Comments, suggesting mode, etc.
  • Basic document editing and formatting features.
  • Importing-exporting files in multiple formats.

Which One is Better for Academic Writing?

Here is a detailed comparison table comparing features, advantages, and many other factors about these three.

 UPDFMS WordGoogle Docs
FeaturesReal-time PDF editing, annotations, PDF management, OCRWord editing, OneDrive integration, reference, and citation stylesOnline document editing, collaboration, real-time activity tracking
File formatWorks in PDF, input and output in different formatsMultiple files, including .docs and PDFMultiple files, including .docs and PDF 
System supportSupports Mac, Windows computers and iOS, and Android smartphonesIt supports Mac, and Windows computers and iOS, and Android smartphones Supports Mac, Windows computers and iOS, and Android smartphones 
PriceFree available, pay to start at $39.99The offline version starts at $69.99 annually, and the online version is free.Free
AdvantagesEdit right inside PDF, UPDF cloud for easier sharing, and Pencil feature.Enjoy both online and offline features, Multiple text editing features, and Basic media editing.Autosave with the online operation, Powerful proofreading tool, and Efficient collaboration.
User ExperienceThe easiest way to edit PDF with such accuracyGood user experience with Microsoft's user interfaceGetting used to this user interface takes some time

With this comparison table, you can see the value UPDF brings to students. Its PDF editing features allow you to write content in the tool, so you don’t have to waste additional effort editing PDFs afterward. It also works on all your devices and offers a similar experience.

Part 5. Which AI tool is Best for Academic Writing?

There has been a lot of fuss about AI content writing tools that anyone can use for academic writing, blog writing, and many other options. So, if you are a student asking what is the best academic writing generator AI tool, here is a comparison of the top 2 options you can try.

1. ChatGPT

ChatGPT is the most recent and, currently, the most popular AI chatbot that can be used for academic writing. Although you need to give the most appropriate prompts to ChatGPT, it makes writing much easier. The best part about ChatGPT is that you can get different benefits from it, including:

  • Generating outlines for academic writing.
  • Using ChatGPT for generating academic writing ideas.
  • Finding the right research material for academic writing.

So, if you don’t use it for writing the content, it can help amazingly with its research capabilities.

2. Jasper

Jasper AI is an artificial intelligence content creation tool that can start with a blank page, a template, or an outline for writing your content. The best part is that you can write content in different tones and choose the content length generated. It keeps learning from your responses and often adds elements to your outline.

Jasper - Best AI Writing Essay App

Which one is better for Academic Writing

This comparison table gives an insight into the value offered by ChatGPT and Jasper.

FeaturesWast knowledge, chatbot features, and more generic content.Templates, plag-free content, niche specific.
User experienceEasier to useHard to use
Free usageCompletely freePaid
Keyword insertionIncluding keywords in your content is hardSeparate UI elements for keyword insertion
Content customizationYou cannot change the tone and length of content generationYou can change the length, tone, and much more about the content
Idea generationA great option for generating ideas and layoutsIt straightaway generates content

ChatGPT is the clear winner for students since the AI content generation features like outline and idea generation help students get more ideas and manually write their concepts within the scope of a thesis statement.

Part 6. Which Tool is the Best Plagiarism Detection Tool for Academic Writing?

Once you are done with the writing part, you need to ensure that your content is original and does not match any previous work. Sometimes you unintentionally plagiarize content; otherwise, the tools show results from sources you haven't seen before. In either case, you must check your content for originality, and multiple tools are available.

1. PlagScan

PlagScan is a premium plagiarism scanning tool known for providing results similar to Turnitin, which is professionally used for checking plagiarism in academic writing. It is one of the best tools to compare your content against the internet, other users, and several academic portals to ensure it is 100% original. The tool itself is from the company Turnitin, so you get very reliable results.


2. Duplichecker

Duplichecker is one of the best free plagiarism-checking tools available out there. It has a paid version if you want the best experience. However, the free version will work fine if your goal is only generating original content. Here you can copy the content or upload files with a maximum limit of 1000 words, and it will check your content. Duplichecker also gives you the highlighted results with their links so you can compare and edit your content.


Which One is Better for Academic Writing?

Below is a comparison of the top 2 plagiarism detectors students can use.

Checking against other usersIt can check plagiarism against other usersDuplichecker only checks against online results
Wordcount restrictionsThe cheapest plan here comes with 6000 words checking restrictionThere is a 1000-word restriction in the free plan
Scanning timeThe plagiarism scanning time is almost instantDuplichecker takes some time to provide results, especially when you use the free version.
Free usageNo unlimited free version is available, and the cheapest plan starts at $5.99The free version is available with unlimited uses and 1000 words restriction.

With both these tools offering a similar experience, using PlagScan is a better option since Turnitin backs it. It provides highly accurate details without wasting any time.

Part 7. Which Tool is The Best Proofreading Software for Academic Writing

Editing is the final step to academic writing, and when editing your content, you must proofread. Since it is not humanly possible to point out all the mistakes made while writing content, you can get assistance from proofreading tools here. Below are the top 2 proofreading tools that students can use:

1. Scribbr

Scribbr is your writing assistant that provides proofreading, citation-generating services, and plagiarism check. It provides you with a team of experts who assist you with their professional experience of proofreading and editing content. Here you also get detailed feedback about your content for making any further revisions.


2. Grammarly

The next one is Grammarly, which is made for students and everyone who types. Grammarly takes proofreading to the next level by checking for correctness, including punctuation and grammatical errors. It also checks your content for clarity to maintain that professional touch, and there are others, including engagement and delivery. You can check for plagiarism and get a complete writing and plagiarism report about your content.


Which One is Better for Academic Writing?

See the comparison table below to see which of the proofreading tools makes a better option for you.

Grammar checkingGrammar checking is not that good at Scribbr in comparisonGrammarly brings a better user interface for checking grammar and other errors
Focus on studentsScribbr focuses more on features for studentsGrammarly is a generic tool, so focus on students is not that good
Plagiarism checkingIt provides much better results for academic writing plagiarism checkingGrammarly offers generic plagiarism-checking results
ProofreadingScribbr often misses some mistakes while proofreadingIt is much better for proofreading

So, we can see that Grammarly is a better option for academic writing and other typing needs due to its wide variety of features, better accuracy, and good user experience.

Final Words

Choosing the right academic writing software is an essential part of academic writing in today's age. Having the right tools on your side significantly enhances your productivity as a writer, editor, and proofreader, and even for generating new ideas. So, select all the products that will enhance your writing performance.

One of the best options is UPDF since it brings features for PDF editing, allowing you to set your formatting carefully. With its in-built note-taking features, research also becomes significantly easier.

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