Just Write: An Easy-to-Use Guide to Writing at University

Just Write: An Easy-to-Use Guide to Writing at University

by Bill Kirton, Kathleen M McMillan
     
 

ISBN-10: 0415396778

ISBN-13: 9780415396776

Pub. Date: 12/28/2006

Publisher: Taylor & Francis

This is a basic, short guide that helps students make the transition to writing at college or university as simple as possible, providing them with the basic skills they need to write in an effective academic style.

The authors draw on their own work to demystify the academic writing process that many students, in all disciplines, find daunting. By understanding

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Overview

This is a basic, short guide that helps students make the transition to writing at college or university as simple as possible, providing them with the basic skills they need to write in an effective academic style.

The authors draw on their own work to demystify the academic writing process that many students, in all disciplines, find daunting. By understanding exactly what obstacles students face when approaching writing at university they offer proven advice that is simple, uncomplicated and easily achievable.

Clear and accessible, this book gives students step-by-step advice to overcome the main hurdles. It covers:

  • overcoming apprehension – then making sure you know exactly what you are supposed to do
  • planning reading – managing your time and keeping your focus, helping you get the material that needs to be in your work
  • getting organised – you are ready to write the first draft, take a break and finally come back and edit it.

Jargon-free, the book helps students at all levels of higher education to write clearly and persuasively, expressing both opinions and findings.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415396776
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
12/28/2006
Series:
Routledge Study Guides
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments     ix
Introduction     1
Why do we need to write?     1
No problem     5
What am I doing here?     5
Academic writing     6
Getting started     7
Breaking it down     9
First steps     10
What tools are available?     11
Write clearly     12
So, where are we now?     14
One step at a time     14
Evaluate your own writing skills     16
What is academic writing?     17
The nonsense generator     18
Sample essay questions     19
Spoken and written language     20
Avoiding personalized language     22
What's it all about?     24
What next?     24
First reference point - your tutor     25
Departmental differences     26
Cross-disciplinary concerns     26
Word count     28
Timescale     29
Style and conventions     32
Layout and presentation     34
The tutor again     35
Using sub-headings     36
The naked sentence     37
Assignment time management     38
Read right, write right     39
Reading is writing     39
Strategic reading     41
Where should you look?     41
Read efficiently     43
How to read     44
Quoting and citing     45
Modality     46
Bibliographies and reference lists     47
Remember the basics     48
'Reporting' words     50
Modality     51
Creating a plan     52
Structuring skills     52
Getting organized     54
Building a structure     56
Planning the assignment     60
Organizing an argument     61
Linking groups     62
Joined-up writing     64
Writing is thinking     64
The first draft     65
Constructing paragraphs     67
Write first, edit later     68
Jargon     69
Using the ideas of others     70
Introducing and formatting quotations     72
Plagiarism     72
Summarizing someone else's arguments     73
The introduction     74
The conclusion     76
Writer's block     76
Word processing     77
Structuring paragraphs     80
Rewording quotations     81
Style and impact     82
What is writing style?     82
What and who?     83
Sentence structure     85
Expand your word power     90
Paragraph sequencing     92
Structuring sentences     92
Sentences that are too long     93
Overcoming the metronome effect     94
Avoiding repetitions     95
Style and convention     96
Nouns or verbs?     96
Abstract or concrete?     99
Formal or informal?     99
Passive or active?     101
Gender neutral language     103
Abbreviations and acronyms     104
Italics     105
Footnotes and endnotes     106
Appendices     107
Nominalization     108
Phrasal verbs     109
Value judgements     110
Making it better     111
A professional approach     111
Reading aloud     112
Common mistakes      114
Subject/verb agreement     114
Sequence of tenses     115
Pronouns and prepositions     115
Comparisons     117
Hanging participle     117
Too many nouns     118
Too many words     118
Numbers and amounts     119
Ne plus ultra     119
Punctuation     120
Subject/verb agreement     121
Comparisons     122
Too many words     123
Numbers and amounts     124
Conclusion     125
Be true to yourself     125
Quick reference     128
Abbreviations for academic purposes     128
Alternative sources of information     129
Bibliographies and reference lists     130
British and American English     133
Difference between spoken and written language     134
Different formats for academic writing - possible elements     136
Exam essays     137
Instruction words     138
Note-making and note-making     140
Punctuation     147
Quotations and citations     155
'Signpost' words     159
Spider diagrams, idea clusters, brainstorming     159
Structuring arguments and counter-arguments     159
Using an index     166
Word-processing tips     167
References     169
Index     170

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