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ESSAY WRITING SKILLS. How to improve them. What is academic writing? What’s expected?. Who is the audience? What format is required – essay or report or reflection on experience? Academic styles of writing– writing in a logical and `objective’ way vs writing from personal experience

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essay writing skills

ESSAY WRITING SKILLS

How to improve them

what is academic writing what s expected
What is academic writing? What’s expected?
  • Who is the audience?
  • What format is required – essay or report or reflection on experience?
  • Academic styles of writing– writing in a logical and `objective’ way vs writing from personal experience
  • Academic conventions – referencing and plagiarism
stages in assignment writing
Stages in assignment writing
  • Preparation and planning
  • Drafting
  • Re-drafting and polishing
  • Editing and proofreading
  • Reflecting on feedback
what makes a good essay
What makes a good essay?
  • Good structure: clear introduction, well crafted middle, clear and appropriate conclusion
  • Clear argument: progression through ideas with clear signposting
  • Well supported by relevant evidence
what makes a good essay5
What makes a good essay?
  • Well written: grammatical; correct spelling and punctuation; good sentence structure, paragraphing and use of linking words and phrases
  • Fully referenced using Harvard system
activity 1 writing a draft essay from a plan
Activity 1 Writing a draft essay from a plan

In pairs:

  • Using the mind map as an aid, write an introductory paragraph, a 2 or 3 paragraph main body, and a concluding paragraph.
slide7

Essay Plan

ADVANTAGES: PERSONAL

Life experience

Transferable skills

Financial issues

Motivation

INTRODUCTION

Aims of essay

Definition of mature students

Context: wider factors

MATURE STUDENTS – DO THE ADVANTAGES OUTWEIGH THE DISADVANTAGES?

DISADVANTAGES

Past experience

Family problems

Ageism

Financial issues

Lack of support

ADVANTAGES:

WIDER CONTEXT

Lifelong learning

Growing nos of

mature students

Diversity

CONCLUSIONS

Summing up the

arguments on both sides

Adapted from Open UniversityStudent Toolkit on essay planning

assessing your work against an example essay
Assessing your work against an example essay.
  • Read essay and comment critically on the structure and organisation. In pairs, identify strengths and weaknesses.
      • Is there a clear introduction to guide the reader?
      • Are key concepts clearly communicated?
      • Does the writing progress/have a sense of direction?
      • Is there a clear and appropriate conclusion?
dos donts
DOS & DONTS

DOS

  • Prepare well in advance
  • Write a first draft, leave and come back to it later
  • Keep your focus on the question
  • Edit carefully for sense, spelling, grammar and punctuation

DONTS

  • Write all you know about a topic
  • Leave till the last minute