Academic Writing


Academic writing style and phraseology


The goal of this course is to practise the moves of academic writing that structure an academic text. By looking at how native-speakers express these moves we can imitate this professional style. At the same time we can utilize online and software tools to vary these native-speaker phrases to suit our own purposes. The strategy is one of imitation and variation.

Expressing personal opinion through word choice. By choosing a particular word, whether noun, adjective, verb or adverb (rather than another one) we are making an evaluative judgement that reflects our position regarding the subject matter and the reader.

Course content

  • Part One:

    What is academic Writing? And what are the conventional moves/functions in an academic paper?

  • Part Two:

    The language of Academic Writing. Corpus tools: Corpus of Contemporary American English, Flax, Just The Word.

  • Part Three:

    Academic Phrases: Writing introductions, referring to literature, being critical. Corpus Tool: Flax.nzdl

  • Part Four:

    Describing Methods, Just The Word, Hedging. Additional moves: Reporting results, discussion, writing conclusions, writing definitions, giving examples, classifying and listing, describing causes and effects, comparing and contrasting, writing about the past, describing trends and projections, describing quantities, transition statements.

  • Part Five:

    Checking for coherence in an argument

  • Part Six:

    Marking Criteria

  • Part Seven:

    Labeling discourse, parallelism, referencing.

  • Part Eight:

    Reading a text and analyzing moves and language.