Tag Archives: how to write in Spanish

Proofreading by yourself vs hiring a specialist

You happen to write a text. Everything is fine, but then you decide to give it one more look. Suddenly, you find some errors. A couple of misspelled words here and there and some sentences that no longer seem to make sense. This is why proofreading is important. You should always double check your texts after writing them, and if you do not have the necessary time, you can always hire a specialist. So, in order to see what is best for you, I am going to talk about the advantages and disadvantages of choosing one over the other.

Proofreading by yourself might be the cheaper option and it could be an excellent idea if you happen to have excellent grammar and writing skills. However, there are some things that you might miss. Having written your own text you are more prone to not seeing some mistakes even though you reread the text. It is because you are subjective towards your own writing and it might sound good to you just as it is.

Proofreading is not only about correcting grammar mistakes, but also about the overall appearance of your text. A professional proofreader can give you suggestions that will help you improve your writing and the way you express yourself. On the long run, it might result to be a more important investment than you think.

If you proofread by yourself it might take a lot more time than expected. You have not done this for a long time and you are already too familiar with your own writing style to detect all of the mistakes. Hiring a professional proofreader will save you time as he has a lot of experience and can detect mistakes more easily. In addition, your work will be free of errors, due to the fact that it is a proofreader’s job to make sure no mistakes have slipped.

So, as you can see, there are many advantages of hiring a proofreader. However, you can still proofread your own texts without having to rely on a professional. For example, you can write some e-mails that are not so important and the text is not too long, some blog posts, even letters. However, when the text that you write is really important such as an academic article, you should really hire a professional proofreader.

It is essential for your text to be flawless, as a piece of writing that has errors might result in a bad overall image of the writing. Even though the text itself might be good, some mistakes can undermine the credibility of it. This is why you should rely on proofreading. If you are looking for a professional Spanish proofreader, do not hesitate to contact me. However, if you want to do it yourself, then you can always give these tips a look. Either way, always proofread your texts. It might cost you a few minutes, but in the end it will definitely be worth it.

B vs V and other similar errors in Spanish

Choosing bettween B and V in Spanish
Initiales BB” (CC BY 2.0) by Mon Œil

If there is one problem that even Spaniards have is with the letters b and v. What is so difficult about these two? Well, they are pronounced almost the same. This is why some confusions appear. In addition, on the keyboard, they are one next to the other. Even though you might be able to use this excuse when typing, it is better to learn when to use which letter. Arm yourself with a pen and a piece of paper, and let’s get started.

We use the letter b in Spanish for:

  1. The words that come from other languages (latin, arabic) and in their original language are written with either b or p. Here are some examples: bien, bueno, biblia, biblioteca, along with words that start with bi-( from the number two): bipolar, bigamia.
  2. Words that start with the syllables: bu-, bur-, and bus-, such as: búsqueda, burla, búho.
  3. The words that end in: -bundo, -bunda, and -bilidad, such as: moribundo, errabunda, There is an exception: movilidad.
  4. All the tenses of the verbs whose infinitives end in: -aber, such as haber, saber, and caber, in -bir, such as escribir, recibir, and in -buir, such as The only exceptions are: hervir, servir, and vivir, along with their compounds.
  5. The verb endings: -ba, -bas, -bamos, -bais, and -ban of the imperfect tense of the indicative mood which correspond to the verbs of the first conjugation, such as cantaba, bailabas, saltábamos, fumaban.
  6. The imperfect verb tense o the verb ir: iba, ibas, iba, íbamos, ibais, iban.

We use the letter v in Spanish for:

  1. Compound nouns formed with the prefix: vice- (which indicates that the person can do this instead of the other). Examples of such words include: vicepresidente, vicealmirante. Other prefixes that indicate the use of the letter v are: villa-, villar-. These are prefixes that indicate geographical places, such as: Villafranca, Villarcayo. Other geographic prefixes include: valle-, vall-, or val-. Examples of such words are: Valparaíso, Valladolid.
  2. The words that start with the syllables: ad, cla, di, pri and are followed by the “v” sound. Such words include: adverbio, clave, diversidad, privilegio. There is an exception: the noun
  3. The words that end in: -viro, vira, -voro, -vora. Examples of such words include: Elvira, carnívoro. As an exception, we have the word víbora.
  4. The words that have the following endings: -ava, -ave, -avo, -eva, -eve, -iva, -ivo. Examples include: suave, nueva, guava, viva. The exception for this rule is the word árabe.

So now you know some of the main ways in which you can learn to distinguish the letter v from the letter b when writing in Spanish. Here are some more tips to help you not mix the two up. Oh, and remember. If you ever happen to type b instead of v, just use the excuse that they are one next to the other on the keyboard. It is the best temporary solution.

Though if you don’t want to rely in excuses, you can contact me to proofread your texts!

How to reduce your cover letter to 350 words

Tips to study Spanish
Studying flickr photo shared by mer chau under a Creative Commons ( BY ) license

Cover letters are a great way to promote skills in front of the prospective employer. Though, today you need to make some alterations to what is considered as a good cover letter.

The most important one is that you should not keep it too long. Cover letters used to be around 675 words but nowadays they are going down to 350. Employer have less time to focus on long and time consuming activities like reading about someone`s achievements.

The main aim of the short cover letter remains the same- to show how you could contribute to the organization and why you are the right person to do so. But you should not repeat the things you have written in your CV – all your formal competence and your experience with former employers is already in your CV. That is where recruiters look for this type of information, because the CV is very clear and schematic.

The same for references – if you have a referee`s name reference on your CV, don’t mention them in the cover letter. It makes you look insecure – as if you are leaning too much on somebody else.

About the outlook-in the top right corner, you should have your name, address, telephone number and email address.

Try to find out who is doing the recruiting –do some Internet research. It is better to address the person by name. It makes it more personal. For example, write something like “To Ms. Alex Jenkins. Add the job title like “Director or HR Manager. Then put the name of the organization or company. Below it, write in bold letters “Application for the position”).

You need shorter paragraphs and more space between the lines. Though old-fashioned, Times New Roman is usually recommended. Your cover letter needs to be “airy”, and it shouldn’t look packed.

Don’t use additional things to make sentences more complex like “I would like to highlight the key reasons why I am so keen to be considered and how I can contribute to your company.” Just do it, don’t announce that you’re going to do it. That’s a bit like what good teachers give students in class: they don’t tell students what they’re going to tell them – they simply tell them.

In fact, the cover letter should be so short, clear and to the point and concise that the recipient would be able to read it in about ten seconds.

Once you have done this, proof-read it carefully to make changes if necessary. Do not feel insecure- it is the same job as writing the classic cover letter. Imagine this is a zip version of it.

This may sound overwhelming, but it is the reality of today’s market, and it’s the way recruiters work. Be catchy – grasp their attention but don’t overwhelm them with too much unnecessary information.

Next time you apply for something, give it a try-at least you will know that your letter was read by someone.

If you need to have your cover letter in Spanish proofread, contact me.

Tips and tricks for conquering Spanish accent marks

I remember once that someone told me about his experience with learning Spanish. Having as a native language one that had no graphic accents, this concept was a bit hard for him to grasp. They simply seemed like something impossible to learn. Not even all of his teachers knew how to make accent marks a bit more tangible. The answer that he would always get was: you have to learn word spelling by heart, which to be honest, is not too easy. So, I came in and explained some tips and tricks for successfully dealing with Spanish accent marks and it seems like the mystery is no longer there. Here they are.

The first step to learning about Spanish accents is to know what letters can receive a graphic mark. Fortunately, only vowels can receive a graphic accent, so only five “problems” to worry about (á, é, í, ó, ú). So far it seems to be easy, right? Well, keep paying attention and take notes because it is about to get a bit more serious. Not too complicated though, so do not get scared and give up.

Let’s get started with the accent rules, but before that, it is important to say a few words about stressing syllables. A crucial role is knowing how words are stressed in Spanish. Usually you learn pronunciation by heart. If something is stressed oddly, then it might mean that it needs an accent.

Rule #1: For words which end in either a vowel, the letter “n,” or the letter “s,” the stress is usually put on the next to last syllable.

Rule #2: For words which end in a consonant, except for the letter “n” or the letter “s”, the stress is usually put on the last syllable.

These rules seem to be simple, so when does the part with actually using graphic accents come? Well, like in all cases, rules are made to be broken and so every rule has its own exception. As a consequence, we need to mark those exceptions with an accent mark. It seems simple, right? Well, let’s take a look.

Examples: Rule #1 : normal: vasos (va-sos), trampa (tram-pa).

exception: exámenes (ex-á-me-nes), también (tam-bién).

Rule #2 : normal: felicidad (fe-li-ci-dad), postal (pos-tal).

                     exception: árbol (ár-bol), cárcel (cár-cel).

Rule #3: when a weak vowel is heard harder than a strong vowel, then a graphic accent is put on the weak vowel. For this rule, you will have to know which are the strong and the weak vowels. Let’s start with the strong ones. There are 3 strong: a, e, o. Basically, since there are only five vowels, we are left with two weak ones: i, u. Here is an example of an exception: país. Since the letter i, a weak vowel is stressed instead of the letter a, we used a graphic mark.

Unfortunately these are not the only accent rules. However, it is better to take them one by one and keep the others for a future post than have to deal with everything all at once.

Do you need someone to proofread your Spanish essay? Contact me!

Useful Phrases for Writing a Letter in Spanish

Types of writing styles

The emergence of digital technology has radically changed the way we get in contact by writing. Whether you need to get in touch with a friend, a close family member or a business partner the old fashioned time of writing letters by snail mail has been replaced by more convenient emails, text messages and social media. Although the necessity of letter writing is unchangeable, its form has transitioned almost entirely online. However, the distinction between formal and informal writing still remains as important since it represents the level of our literacy skills.

Informal letters even in the virtual world are more or less the same as those we used to write on paper. Writing to people with whom we are close does not require formality. On the contrary, the more natural they sound the more obvious is the friendly tone. On the other hand, when it comes to formal writing, we often feel uneasiness about the content, the style and the tone of the letter we need to start. Before we begin, we need to know the reason why we are writing. What type of letter do we need to write? Do we know the person we are writing to? Is it about being polite or a bit strict?

Formal letters

The content of formal letters depends on the reason we need to write to someone. We may be looking for information, forward an invitation, ask for a favour or complain on something, the reasons are numerous. Regardless what the reason is, we should keep in mind that the letter must present formality and politeness. All formal letters have a general frame of the content, which means an opening sentence(s), the body of the letter and the closing sentence(s).

The format of formal letters

  • Your address in the top right corner-you may include your phone number. The date goes right below this part.
  • Start with salutation. If you know the person you refer to him/her as “Estimado señor” /”Muy señor mío” if you refer to a male or  “Muy señora mía” if you address a female.
  • The opening lines of the letter should indicate the reason of your writing so that the receiver has a clear idea what it is about. For example:

-Le escribo para + INFINITIVO

-El motivo de mi carta es + INFINITIVO

-Le envío la presente carta para + INFINITIVO

-Me pongo en contacto con usted para + INFINITIVO

  • A positive introduction may be “Me complace informarle de que…” or “Es para mi un placer…”
  • If you write a letter of complaint you can say “Quiero expresar mi malestar por… ” / “Considero inaceptable”. Or you may wish to send a thank-you letter. In that case you express your intention like “Le estoy muy agradecido por + INFINITIVO / HABER + participio”.  “Quiero expresar mi agradecimiento por…”  “Quedo, por todo ello, muy agradecido /-a.….” .

In an inquery letter when you need information you may say: “Le escribo para pedirle…” or “Le agradecería mucho que + IMPERFECTO DE SUBJUNTIVO”.

  • The body of the letter should contain more information on the subject. This is where you expand your writing. Pay attention to your grammar and spelling rules. Your letter should be well presented and sound respectful even you if you need to complain. Keep it short and stick to the point of your writing.
  • End the letter with an expression such as “Sincerely yours” or “Best wishes” or in Spanish “Un cordial saludo” which is also acceptable nowadays. Sign with your full name and surname at the end.
  • Make sure your letter has short and clear paragraphs.

By no means, the digital era has made correspondence much easier in terms of time and efficiency. Nevertheless, the composition is a subject to the efficacy  and literacy of the sender.

Do you need to write to your clients in Spanish? Hire me to proofread them before you send them.

Why it is important to have someone proofread your posts

Writing in Spanish might be a difficult task for you. However, you want to learn and try your best to write correctly. You are not sure that you did everything right and that your message gets through the way that you want it to, so you think about hiring someone to proofread your posts.

Spanish writing could be a hard task for many, as there are commonly confused words like por and para, which sometimes even natives misuse. In addition, Spaniards have three words to express“to be”. Why do they have to be so specific? Well…it is important to know the difference between estar listo and ser listo, as a simple verb can change the meaning from being ready to being smart. But there is no need to worry. You can write the word that you find to be most suitable, and if you are wrong, a proofreader will correct that error.

An other aspect of the Spanish language that most people have problems with (including natives) is with the letters b and v, which sound the same in the spoken language, but can change the meaning of some words if not used correctly. For example you have the word bello (beautiful) and the word vello (hair). Also, there is a problem with the letter h, which is silent. While, the word hay means to exist, ay is just an interjection. Don´t worry if they are giving you problems at first, because even natives sometimes misuse them. Just to be sure that you are right, you should hire a proofreader, who will ensure that your spelling is on point.

If Spanish spelling wasn´t complicated enough, they had to complicate it even more, by adding accents. The rules might seem simple at first, if the word ends in a consonant (except n or s), then the accent should normally fall on the last syllable. If not, on the first to last syllable. If these rules are not respected, then you should graphically mark the accent. Seems simple, right? Wrong. However, if a weak vowel such as i or u is heard stronger than a hard vowel such as a, e, o, then, the accent should be marked accordingly.

The thing with the accents might seem easy at first, but, there is always a problem. A simple accent can change the meaning of a word. Oh, that little line, it can create so much trouble! For example, you have the word él which means he, and the word el, which is the masculine definite article. In addition, an accent can change the tense of the verb. For example, yo saltó means I jump, meanwhile el saltó, means he jumped.

Learning all these spelling rules might be a difficult task and even the most advanced Spanish speakers make these types of mistakes. This is why, hiring a specialist to proofread your texts is recommended, as he or she would make sure that your writing is error-free. If you are looking for a Spanish proofreader, click this link.

Free Tools to Proofread a Spanish Text

Whether you’re looking to check through content from your Spanish freelancer or would like help checking your own Spanish language writing, there are some useful tools that can help you get started.  These tools can assist in finding grammatical errors, spelling mistakes and troubles with syntax.  The best news is that some of the tools are free.

Here are some of the most useful free tools for proofreading a Spanish text:

  1. My Stilus – Grammar and Spelling Checker

Functioning in a very similar way to Word, this website allows you to copy and paste text into a window and then correct it!  Suggestions are made for each mistake found within the text.  It’s easy to use and quite accurate.  Whatever your Spanish text, this handy checker will make sure that it’s written in perfect Spanish.

  1. Fundación del Español Urgente – Common Questions

This website includes a number of useful features.  If you’re writing or proofreading a Spanish text, and have a specific grammar question or want to know how to use a word, a consultation feature allows you to ask your question and get an answer!  With the support of the Real Academia Español, the official organization that monitors the Spanish language, this website provides authoritative answers to many Spanish language questions.  In addition, you can browse through the answers given to other users regarding their own questions.  The library of already answered consults is conveniently categorized so that you may search by type of issue (grammar, abbreviations, gender, etc.) or simply browse through as published by date.

  1. Real Academia Español – Dictionary and Common Questions

The Real Academia Español itself also provides a useful website with the official dictionary and also a section for consultations regarding the use of the Spanish language.  From the homepage, in the dictionary section, you can choose between the dictionary and the consultation area.  Rest your cursor on the arrow beside “Diccionario de la lengua Española” and you’ll see a drop-down option that will take you to the “Diccionario panhispánico de dudas”.  One of my favorite tools here includes the conjugator, which allows you to see a complete listing of verb conjugations in each tense after looking up the verb in the dictionary.

  1. Word Reference – Dictionary and Common Questions

For English speakers looking for a comprehensive English-Spanish translator, word reference provides one of the best options around.  It also includes a Spanish-Spanish dictionary option. One of the best features is that it’s interactive, including definitions and explanations of more informal language used across Spanish speaking countries provided by users.  The site also has a general forum area where common questions about Spanish language usage, grammar and vocabulary are answered.

  1. Instituto Cervantes Forum – Common Questions

This useful forum provides a platform a place for Spanish speakers and writers to ask and answer questions.  Although the organization of the site could be improved to show the categories in a more user-friendly manner, the answers are thorough and cover an extensive range of topics.


Critical thinking in scholarly writing

Building your critical thinking capacity is an essential tool when you write scholarly articles. There are several steps you should take into consideration in the process of designing a scientifically based piece of writing.

Firstly, you should have a solid base of knowledge through reading various sources connected to the topic you are referring to. This will help you identify the essence of the issue which is to be discussed further in the essay. Misinterpretation of titles may lead to losing the main idea elaborated in the main part of your writing. For example, if the question you need to address is “We are all middle class, are we?”, it  may suggest two assumptions. One point may be that we all belong to one class and the second meaning it is the middle class at which the leveling takes place. Once you have clarified the issue well you are ready to implement the critical dimension to meet the requirements of successful writing.

As you need to provide a comprehensive answer on the issue it is important that you stand outside your world and view and examine the given issue with new eyes. You may be asked to question habits, values and attitudes which you may have taken for granted, or you may have preconceived views, even prejudices towards certain phenomena you thought were correct. Though, as a scholar, you should examine assumptions with new perspectives. In your efforts to avoid judgmental attitudes, you search for different authors and explanations in order to develop your views. Moreover, the more you support your views the better you will introduce the subject and draw a final conclusion.

The evidence to support your views or arguments may come from your studies, a theory or scientific research. For example, your argument that `Language acquisition starts at very early age` may be supported by evidence from a scientist: `Chomsky believes that children are born with an inherited ability to learn any human language`. Additionally, it is crucial that you give your own examples which show that you have understood the concept. You must remember that arguments are supported by examples, not induced from the examples. Speaking of the concept of socialization, you may present your view on how particular life stages affect socialization. For example, `Adolescence is the time when significant multiple changes take place with the individual`. You may support your argument by referring to scientists in general: `Sociologists emphasize the role of the peer group as influential to for the social and emotional development of the person`. Giving theoretical support to your essay means that you have a deep insight of the issues you are addressing. Providing your own examples is another tool for highlighting your views and ideas and illustrate that you have internalized the concept or issue.  They may come from sources you have found, the media or a book.

No matter how tough job scholarly writing seems to be, we can learn how to overcome the fears of looking into a blank page waiting to be filled with thousands of words. We may not reach R.W. Emerson`s brilliance, but we can learn the skill, just like any other.

I have experience in scholar writing in Spanish and I can help you proofreding you essays in Spanish. Do not hesitate to contact me if you need help.

Writing a Report in Spanish and giving it a title

Do you need to write a report in Spanish? What is first the report or the title?

Choosing a title of your Spanish report may sound as one’s funeral, but do not worry. This post is meant to help you, with specific guidelines, do the right choice and do not feel the pain. Thus, practicing, asking questions of relevance, presenting your own idea of a certain topic, and sticking to writing rules are key factors in the process of choosing the title of your Spanish report.

Primarily, to get skilled at academic writing, you should first practice it. And, believe it or not, free writing helps a lot. Take a pen and paper and start writing for 2 minutes without stopping. You might not have a topic, a flow of thoughts, or even an opinion, but writing without stopping will teach you in time, how to stick to a thought and effectively work with word choice. After you have mastered this, you can decide to write just a paragraph about a certain topic, then a page etc, moving on to a report.

An essential clue is, ask yourself questions. Think thoroughly about the audience, as they are determiners of the success of both your title and the content. Who is reading your report? Do they have some previous knowledge on the topic? Do they want to be entertained or rather acquire specific scientific knowledge? How do you want them to feel when reading your report? One certain thing is that your audience will be Spanish-speaking, so you would have to make sure that your writing is correct and in accordance to the Spanish grammatical system.

To make this clearer and less general, let’s say your Spanish professor asks you to write a report on the left-wing political party in Spain, PODEMOS, and that is the only instruction you have. These instructions, of course, are too general and a title as The Political Party PODEMOS in Spain will only make you fail the course. Thus, let’s narrow it down. The more specific you get, the more successful it would be. Who is your audience? Your professor. Does he have some knowledge about the topic? Well, we hope so, otherwise he would not have suggested it. Therefore, in your report, you should not spend too many precious words of explaining what PODEMOS is. It is essential, but make it short. Does your professor want to be entertained or get a scientific knowledge about it? Well, it is obvious that he/she wants a scientific knowledge, but who doesn’t want to be entertained either?

In order to continue with questions and answers, you need to investigate the topic and find something of your interest. If it is boring for you, it cannot result in an interesting report. Next, during your research, you found out that PODEMOS issued a collaboratively written program for the European Elections 2014. You are getting more specific. But not enough. The program for the European Elections 2014 by PODEMOS is still not a good title. Investigate the policies, pick one and bingo! You are getting really specific. Let’s say that maintaining abortion rights caught your attention. Now, we are almost done. How did you feel when investigating on this? Are you defending it or against it? It is essential that you include your idea, your own opinion about a specific topic. But, a title as “Abortion is a murder”, as suggested in policy no.12 in the Program for the European Elections 2104 by PODEMOS tends to be quite a good title in terms of detail, but bad in terms of politically correct wording and attitude. Even if you are passionate about a topic, keep it to yourself. An academic report means that you will argumentatively introduce your idea on something, without emotional exaggerations. You want your professor to feel that he/she is discovering new way of thinking that might even influence his/hers. Therefore, think about your idea and make it sound good. Euphemisms are a good way to do that. Avoiding to use emotionally colored words as “kill” is also a good way. Try to use numbers, clues, citations, facts, reliable websources as suggested in the previous post etc.

Lastly, you may have a strong opinion about abortion in this case, but, throughout your research, you may find strong arguments against is as well. You might even change fully your opinion. Reports are dangerous, they make you read thoroughly, they will get you into thinking, and they might change what you have always thought to be your opinion. Therefore, be ready that the title is the most relative and most modified aspect of your report, it will fully be defined only after you have finished writing.

Last but not least, after you have finished with the semantic side of your report, make sure you introduce linking words in Spanish, that you have structured it well, and that it makes you happy at the end. The best advice I have got over choosing a title and writing a report is “Sleep it over. Write a paragraph, go cycling, take a shower, write the introduction of the second paragraph and leave it. Next day, you might find your writing non-argumentative, you might correct it all, or make it more profound. Then go out for a coffee”. So, what title did YOU come up with of the previously elaborated topic?

And of course, once you have it finished you can hire a native Spanish speaker to proofread it.


How to Search Academic Sources in Spanish

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Open Data Challenge Series – Energy & environment creation weekend flickr photo shared by OpenDataInstitute under a Creative Commons ( BY-SA ) license

Often times one has to look for academic sources for a particular project which just 10 years ago meant to dive in a public library, but today, as information is quickly accessibly online, one just has to type in what they need to investigate. Still, it is surely not as easy as it seems. Just because adding information on the internet most frequently than not is not edited, neither is selective in terms of who adds the information, many “academic” sources are not trustworthy. Another point is that, English, being lingua franca, is the language we most probably will find the necessary sources the easiest. Spanish on the other hand, even though 400 million people speak is as a native language, has more limited amount of sources. Therefore, this post will investigate some of the features necessary when searching for academically reliable articles, and as well provide you with trustworthy webpages about where to search academic sources in Spanish.

Identify a good website for academic research

Initially, before searching for content, one should first recognize if a website is credible. Several pieces of information that would make your search easier are: author, domain, updates, sources, language etc. When opening a webpage, you should first notice the author standing behind the information presented, as well as, many times, his contact information. When talking about the domain, many domains can be used by any individual. Still, it is a general knowledge that .com is used by commercial organizations, .gov used by government organizations etc. What might be suspicious are the .org websites, hosted by non-profit organizations, which are not necessarily unreliable. Update is one of the most important features, as constant updates of a webpage are a sign of improving in the pace of time. If the information is of an academic character, sources indicated in detail are compulsory for credibility of the information stated. Lastly, poor and incorrect language proves for a website not to have been professionally edited.

If you have all checked from the previously stated, it is time to move on and share some examples of good academic sources online, particularly in Spanish.

Where to find academic sources in Spanish.

The first one is google scholar, a searching database of academic articles, journals, thesis, abstracts etc. What is best about it is that it lists the findings in terms of relevance rather than chronological order. As well, upon opening a page, it provides you with all the necessary information listed as trustworthy in the previous paragraph. You can enable your own library, citations and look through it for free. If you would like to search for information just in Spanish, you can regulate that in the Settings menu, under Languages.

Now, narrowing down to Spanish websites, I will provide you with a .org domain that IS reliable, which proves there is discrepancy of the previously stated, as I have mentioned before. SCIELO is a scientific electronic library online, offered in Portuguese, English and Spanish. It is highly user-friendly, as you can search by field, alphabetic list or journals. It offers a tremendous variety of journals, issues, articles and citations. In addition, you can also search by geographical region, and almost all results are able to be downloaded in a pdf file.

Another similar source that offers many languages amongst which is Spanish, is Dialnet, a website coordinated by the Univeristy de la Rioja. Registration to the webpage is free, and you could, if you wish, allow them to send you constant updates about a particular field of your interest. As SCIELO, this is an academic source of journals, thesis and congresses. If you register, you could sort out your searches, save information you need, subscribe to alerts etc.

Surely enough, you could also decide to search university databases or individual academic sources, but knowing of the existence of google scholar, SCIELO and Dialnet makes your life easier and happier.

If you want to do it the old-school way as I prefer, you can always go to the good-old university libraries which nowadays have an online database including information of the title, author, year of publication and publisher, and once you find the book online, it indicates which exact shelf to find it in the library. The good thing about this is that you personally link to the source you’re reading, as you can touch it, smell it, and read it knowing it has been through many smart hands before J Now you’re more than ready to go out and investigate the world. And don’t forget, as the secretary of United Nations Kofi Annan says, knowledge is power and information is liberating.

And once you have finished your work, you can send it to me for proofreading and I will be happy to review your grammar, spelling and even the reference list.