Lecture 1 What is academic writing?

Lecture 1   Academic Writing 

 What we will discuss today:

   Ø     What is academic writing? 

  Ø     What does it mean to be a scholar in the academy? 

I.  Academic writing is the style of writing used by scholars in the academy.      

    A. The academy is a place dedicated to learning and exploration of ideas and knowledge.         

   B.  A scholar is an academic or one who does research.      

         1. He or she is a learned person or specialist in a particular branch of knowledge;  

             or especially an academic who specializes in the arts or humanities (languages, visual or fine arts,

             music, human communication and philosophy.” (Encarta [North American] Dictionary).            

         2.  A scholar may also be a researcher or one who studies something in an organized, methodical 

              and scientific manner; usually beginning with an hypothesis (hypotheses) or research question(s). 

II. Academic writing has particular rules and requirements one must adhere to in order to be taken    

    seriously as an  academic.    

     A. Academic writing is written for possible publication or review by other scholars.  

    B.  Academic writing is used by students in the academy who wish to be considered scholars and

         attain a degree.    

    C. Academic writing is more formal and less personal.  

III.  Academic writing requires critical reading and critical thinking      

     A. Critical reading presumes reading to learn and without bias      

     B. Critical reading requires reading with a questions mark in your mind           

          1. Do I agree with this? 

          2. Why does the writer say this?   

          3. Where is the writer’s documentation for this? 

          4. What do other writer’s or texts say about this topic?        

     C. Critical thinking is analytical and unbiased…          

         1. Critical thinkers will set aside their personal presuppositions. 

          2. Critical thinkers are curious      

          3. Critical thinkers are concerned more about honesty than being right. 

IV.  Academic writing can be interesting, creative and exciting.    [Read a sample]

V. Academic writing serves several functions

    §        To summarize the text by stating briefly its main or most important ideas.

    §        To synthesize (several articles and writers) into one written piece.

    §        To explain ideas or concepts or processes

    §        To inform or give factual information

    §        To argue or persuade

    §        To propose

    §        To analyze

    §        To evaluate     


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