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A small guide to Academic Writing

A small guide to Academic Writing 16
A small guide to Academic Writing A small guide to Academic WritingA small guide to Academic Writing Language and Style Academic texts should be factual, concise and accurate. Conversatio nal English should be avoided and facts and figures should be written in a clear manner. Choose words precisely and carefully so that the reader can accurately understand the concepts within the text. In academic writing you need to acknowledge the complexity of the subject matter through critical analysis. You can do this through asking questions and examining and evaluating evidence. Through critical analysis you are able to add a new perspective to a subject instead of just rewriting what has already been written. In general, academic texts are impersonal and objective in nature. This means that the main emphasis should be on evidence and arguments and not based on personal opinion and feelings. The use of perso nal pronouns such as ‘I’, ‘we’ and ‘you’ should be avoided as much as possible.A small guide to Academic Writing Structure In academic texts it is important to present material in a coherent and structured manner. Planning and organizing the structure of the paper gives your work a sense of direction and helps the reader understand the text. It is important to have a clear, logical structure throughout the entire paper, both at the overall level (chapters and sections) as well as the detailed level (paragraphs and sentences). Academic texts of all kinds should always have an introduction where you indicate the focus of the paper and a conclusion that ties together issues covered in the paper. Longer texts may require the use of subheadings, although you should not use too many. Wellstructured paragraphs will give the text an organized appearance and help guide the reader. The text should be divided into body paragraphs ensuring that each paragraph deals with one main point or theme and that each paragraph transitions well into the next.A small guide to Academic Writing Reference Management All academic work builds on the contributions of others. It is therefore important to refer to current and relevant research in your writing and report where you found your material. You can do this through speci fying your sources according to the reference system that is used in your course or program. There are many die ff rent referencing systems but some of the more common ones include: Harvard, Oxford and APA. If your text is too close to the original source you can be charged with plagiarism. You can use direct quotations but do so sparingly. If direct quotes are used make sure you use quotation marks and that you cite the source properly. In order to avoid plagiarism you must always acknowledge the original source in your work through referencing and citation. Your text should always end with a reference list.A small guide to Academic Writing Checklist for academic texts My text is factual and avoids personal opinions. My text does not use conversational speech. I avoid using personal pronouns as much as possible. I have proofread my paper and corrected any spelling errors. My text has an introduction and a conclusion. My text has a clear purpose or a clearly formulated question to answer. My text is divided into paragraphs according to the principle “one thought per paragraph”. I have checked that my references are properly formatted. Verbatim quotes are cited properly with quotation marks and references. My reference list is formatted properly.A small guide to Academic Writing Further reading HampLyons, Liz Heasley, Ben (2006). Study Writing. A course in writing skills for academic purposes. Cambridge University Press. Hartley, James (2008). Academic Writing and Publishing. New York: Routledge publishing. The Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL). Linnaeus University Academic Support Centre SE391 82 Kalmar /SE 351 95 Växjö The University Library Phone +46 77228 80 00 HT14 Email