Introduction to Academic Writing Assignment

Introduction to Academic Writing Assignment Words: 2634

In contrast to personal writing contexts, academic writing is different because it deals with the underlying theories and causes governing processes and practices in everyday life, as well as exploring alternative explanations for these events. Academic writing follows a particular ‘tone’ and adheres to traditional conventions of punctuation, grammar, and spelling. Http://war. Pupae. Com/writing/feature/feature. HTML Structure Some kind of structure is required, such as a beginning, middle, and end.

This simple structure is typical of an essay format, as well as other assignment writing tasks, which may not have a clearly articulated structure. Academic writing structure [hide] Typical university assignments follow a formal structure, which is often more formal than in personal writing. Essays In the case of an essay, the introductory paragraph informs the reader about the nature of the topic, which is discussed and evaluated in the middle of the essay, also referred to as the body.

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The introduction may also summaries very succinctly, in a sentence or two, your position on the issue, which is then elaborated on at length in the series of paragraphs that make up the essay’s body. The final paragraph constitutes a conclusion in which you may summaries the overall points made. The concluding paragraph is also a good point at which to move the essay forward to touch on implications or future advancements surrounding the issues addressed.

Reports Another type of structure, common in university assignments is that of a report, often organized around the identification of problems or difficulties and corresponding solutions. Unlike most essays, a report is divided according to clearly labeled sections, such as “Introduction”, “Discussion”, “Conclusions”, and “Recommendations”. Further, unlike an essay, reports allow for billeted points with respect to the conclusions and recommendations sections.

Referencing A significant difference between academic writing and other writing genres is eased on the citation and referencing of published authors. Referencing and citation [hide] If you make judgments about something in academic writing, there is an expectation that you will support your opinion by linking it to what a published author has previously written about the issue. Citing the work of other authors is central to academic writing because it shows you have read the literature, understood the ideas, and have integrated these issues and varying perspectives into the assignment task.

The importance placed on referring to other authors in your work can be reflected in the elaborate preferring conventions that have been created within different disciplines, such as PAP (American psychological Association) referencing, which is used in psychology, education, some social sciences, as well as for business. Academic tone Like all varieties of writing, academic writing has its own tone, which dictates the choice of words and phrasing. Academic tone Chide] Academic writing typically aims to be: objective (e. G. Using inclusive language) concise formal (e. . Avoiding slang exclamation marks, contractions) The tone of academic writing can also vary significantly depending on the subject-area ND the academic discipline you are writing for. The readings, textbook, and study guide of your course show you what tone is expected in the paper, so study their style carefully. The audience It is important to remember who you are writing for. Being conscious of academic tone suggests that you are aware of your audience and respect the formality normally associated with academic writing.

When writing academically, you must target a more general audience than just your lecturer and/or marker. You should assume that your readers will be intelligent thinking people, but they may not be specifically informed of your epic. Do not presume that your reader knows all the terms and concepts associated with your work. Punctuation and grammar In academic writing you should always follow rules Of punctuation and grammar, especially as the end-user or consumer of your writing, unlike a friend, is likely to be very different from you and will not always know to what you are referring.

Hence, it is vital that you are clear. Punctuation and the conventions of grammar are universally known systems (within English speaking cultures) that maintain clarity and avoid ambiguity in expression. Features of academic writing Introduction Academic writing in English is linear, which means it has one central point or theme with every part contributing to the main line of argument, without digressions or repetitions. Its objective is to inform rather than entertain. As well as this it is in the standard written form of the language.

There are eight main features of academic writing that are often discussed. Academic writing is to some extent: complex, formal, objective, explicit, hedged, and responsible. It uses language precisely and accurately. Complexity Written language is relatively more complex than spoken language. Written language has longer words, it is lexically more dense and it has a more varied vocabulary. It uses more noun-based phrases than verb-based phrases. Written texts are shorter and the language has more grammatical complexity, including more subordinate clauses and more passives.

The following features are common in academic written texts: Noun-based phrases, Subordinate clauses/me bedding, Complement clauses, Sequences of prepositional phrases, Participles, Passive verbs, Lexical density, Lexical complexity, Multinational, Attributive adjectives Examples Holiday (1989, p. 9) compares a sentence from a spoken text: You can control the trains this way and if you do that you can be quite sure that they’ll be able to run more safely and more quickly than they would otherwise, no matter how bad the weather gets. Tit a typical written variant: The use of this method of control unquestionably leads to safer and faster train running in the most adverse weather conditions. The main difference is the grammar, not the vocabulary. Other equivalents are given below (p. 81 ): Spoken Written Whenever I’d visited there before, I’d ended up feeling that it would be futile if ride to do anything more. Every previous visit had left me with a sense of the futility of further action on my part. The cities in Switzerland had once been peaceful, but they changed when people became violent.

Violence changed the face of once peaceful Swiss cities. Because the technology has improved its less risky than it used to be when you install them at the same time, and it doesn’t cost so much either. Improvements in technology have reduced the risks and high costs associated with simultaneous installation. The people in the colony rejoiced when it was promised that things would change in this way. Opinion in the colony greeted the promised change with enthusiasm. Try these exercises: Exercise 1 “Because the jobs are even more complex, programmers to train people will take longer. The increased complexity of tasks Will lead to the extension of the duration of training programmers. Exercise 2. “L handed my essay in late because my kids got sick. ” The reason for the late submission of my essay was the illness of my children. Formality Academic writing is relatively formal. In general this means in an essay that you should avoid: a. Colloquial words and expressions; ‘”stuff’, “a lot of”, “thing”, “sort of”, b. Abbreviated forms: “can’t”, “doesn’t”, “shouldn’t” c. Two word verbs: “put off’, ‘bring up ‘ d. Sub-headings, numbering and bullet-points in formal essays – but use them in reports. . Asking questions. E” , 20 : , “¶” , : , “E WTG”DO , Identify the informal expressions in the following sentences. Rewrite the following sentences, replacing the informal expressions with a more formal equivalent. 1. With women especially, there is a lot of social pressure to conform to a certain physical shape. 2. Significantly, even at this late date, Ululate was considered a bit conservative by his peers. 3. It focused on a object that a lot of the bourgeois and upper-class exhibition-going public regarded as anti-social and anti-establishment. . Later Floret got together with Paul Filled in an experimental study of the use of curare to relieve the intractable muscular spasms which occur in fully developed infection with tetanus or lockjaw. 5. When a patient is admitted to a psychiatric inpatient unit, the clinical team should avoid the temptation to start specific treatments immediately. 6. Therefore after six months the dieter is behaving according to all twenty-six goals and she has achieved a big reduction in sugar intake. 7.

Modern houses have so many labor-saving things that it is difficult for the person at home to have adequate exercise by doing chores, cooking, and looking after a family. 8. Simply making the effort to reclaim this wasted stuff for fertilizer would have a positive effect on greenhouse releases. 9. It is difficult to imagine exactly what is meant by saying that such a classification is natural as any collection of things could be classified in this way. 10. Unfortunately, since there are so many possible explanations, the correct one is most difficult to find Out. 1 1 .

These exercises can easily be incorporated onto an exercise routine, with each exercise done again a number of times. 12. Fleming did well in isolating a streptococcus from the cerebration’s fluid of the patient. 13. Effective vaccines prevent such hazards, but only if a social organization makes sure that all potential mothers are vaccinated in good time. Exercise 2 Rewrite the following sentences, replacing the informal abbreviated form with a more formal equivalent. 1. The radical restructuring of British politics after 1931 doesn’t lie in the events of 13-28 August, but in the changing attitudes within the National Government. . This isn’t easy to do since most historians persist in speaking of The National Government as if the same sort Of government ruled from 1931 to 1940. 3. The first National Government wasn’t intended to be a coalition government in the normal sense of the term. 4. These aren’t at all original or exotic but are based on the ordinary things that most people tend to eat. Exercise 3 Avoiding two word verbs There is often a choice in English between a two word verb and a single verb bring up/raise, set up/establish. Rewrite the following sentences, replacing the informal two-overdo verb with a more formal equivalent. A primary education system was set up throughout Ireland as early as 1831 2. This will cut down the amount of drug required and so the cost of treatment. 3. The material amenities of life have gone up in Western society. 4. The press reflected the living culture of the people; it could influence opinion and reinforce existing attitudes but it did not come up with new forms of entertainment. 5. Thus, he should have looked into how the patient has coped previously. 6. The aggregate of outstanding balances went up and down quite violently. . In 1947 the Treasury brought up the question of excluding South Africa (and India) from the sterling area. . Dieters often feel that they should totally get rid of high-fat and high-sugar foods. 9. Thus when a Gaelic bishop in 576 converted the local Jewish community to Christianity, those who turned down baptism were expelled from the city. 10. Western scholars gradually turned out a corpus of translations from the Arabic and studies of Islam. 11. MS Tucker, Lord White’s 29-year-old companion, has since taken her statement back. 12.

Discussion of the outcome of experiments that have used this method will be put off until Chapter 7. 13. They did not easily accept or put up with differences in others. 14. My high- school friend signed up for three years with the army so he could put away enough money to go to university and study law. 15. The solitary feeding of insectivores in forests was therefore put down to a foraging strategy involving the pursuit of cryptic and easily disturbed prey by singletons. 16. In style, the turn toward abstraction and simplification came about earliest with Mannequin and Bernard and next with van Gogh. 7. For Klein that cloudless day never arrived, but he never gave up his hope for a just world. 18. Eventually the Irish party was forced to go back to Westminster. 19. The court thinks it just and equitable to give back the property. 20. The English liked coal fires even though they do not always give off much heat 21 . The story told by German propaganda, however, gave away nothing of the mounting hopelessness of the 6th Army’s position. 22. These exercises can easily be incorporated into an exercise routine, with each done again a number of times. 23.

Marx took as one of his main tasks the understanding of how this system came into being and this was in order to find out why this system had such power. 24. This was before he had read the guidelines on how to carry out the research. 25. Still, the pressure to do well as an individual made most women believe that the problems they encountered were probably of their own making. Exercise 4 It is often the case that formal words are longer than informal words, formal words are single words not multi-words and formal words are of French/Latin origin rather than their informal equivalents which are of Anglo-Saxon origin.

For example: “depart” is from French/Latin but ‘go” is Anglo-Saxon. Complete the fool lowing table: Formal Informal seem climb help cease commence use decrease demonstrate depart want enquire end obtain preserve reject free mend require live retain informal n the end at once initially intermittently mainly repeatedly next therefore understanding deficiency opportunity perspiration house sight amiable whole energetic fortunate childish wrong inferior inexpensive dim Insane laid back responsible enough better transparent empty Precision In academic writing, facts and figures are given precisely.

In academic writing you need to be precise when you use information, dates or figures. Do not use “a lot of people” when you can say “50 million people”. Objectivity Written language is in general objective rather than personal. It therefore has fewer words that refer to the writer or the reader. This means that the main emphasis should be on the information that you want to give and the arguments you want to make, rather than you. This is related to the basic nature of academic study and academic writing, in particular. Nobody really wants to know what you “think” or “believe”.

They want to know what you have studied and learned and how this has led you to your various conclusions. The thoughts and beliefs should be based on your lectures, reading, discussion and research and it is important to make this clear. For that reason, academic writing tends to use nouns (and adjectives), rather than verbs (and adverbs). W’aha”0 1. Compare these two paragraphs: Paragraph A: The question of what constitutes “language proficiency” and the nature of its cross-lingual dimensions is also at the core of many hotly debated issues in the areas of bilingual education and second language pedagogy and testing.

Researchers have suggested ways of making second language teaching and testing more “communicative” (e. G. , Canals and Swain, 1980; Oilier, 1 Bibb) on the grounds that a communicative approach better reflects the nature of language proficiency than one which emphasizes the acquisition of discrete language skills. Paragraph B: We don’t really know hat language proficiency is but many people have talked about it for a long time. Some researchers have tried to find ways for us to make teaching and testing more communicative because that is how language works. Hint that language is something we use for communicating not an object for us to study and we remember that when we teach and test it. Which is the most objective? 2. In general, avoid words like “l”, “me”, “myself”. A reader will normally assume that any idea not referenced is your own. It is therefore unnecessary to make this explicit. Don’t write:” In my opinion, this a very interesting study. Write: This is a very interesting study. Avoid you to refer to the reader or people in general.

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