Developing as an academic writer in English involves learning to structure, support and defend a coherent and persuasive argument, to control the tone, register and style of your writing so it is efficient and accessible, to use a range of advanced and conceptual vocabulary, and to apply the principles of source attribution and referencing common across academic disciplines.
There is a lot of advice and lessons online on the subskills you will need to develop to improve as an academic writer and on how to write different “types” of essays. Please remember, however, that such advice may be of varying quality or relevance to the writing task your instructor has set for you. In your FAE class, the writing tasks will be “argument-led” or “argument driven”, and you might also see this described as “critical”, “evaluative”, or “analytical” writing.
As well as exploring the advice available at the links below, make sure you understand your instructor’s task requirements and read any instructions provided though the course Moodle page very carefully.
- Advice from the Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL) website on how to write the different sections of an “argument” paper: https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/general_writing/common_writing_assignments/argument_papers/index.html
- The “Writing” section of Andy Gillet’s Using English for Academic Purposes (UEfAP) website (have a look at “Features” and “Genres” and “Reporting” for a start): http://www.uefap.com/writing/writfram.htm
- Harvard Faculty Explain Analytical Writing – an overview of the purpose and form of academic writing from the Harvard Writes initiative, including reading exercises drawn from a range of subject areas. This resource is for both advanced students and professional academic writers, like faculty: https://www.harvardwrites.com/
Arguments and Critical Thinking
- Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab (OWL) introduction to writing logical arguments: https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/general_writing/academic_writing/logic_in_argumentative_writing/index.html
- Also from Purdue’s OWL, brief historical overview of useful models of argument for college/university writing (classical, Toulmin, Rogerian):
- Fun introductions to spotting and classifying faulty claims and reasoning by The School of Thought non-profit initiative: yourlogicalfallacyis.com (on fallacies) and yourbias.is (on cognitive bias)