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Becoming an academic writer 10 steps to assignment success.

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Presentation on theme: "Becoming an academic writer 10 steps to assignment success."— Presentation transcript:

1 Becoming an academic writer 10 steps to assignment success

2 Step one Prepare to research Open a research folder – old envelope; file; smart new briefcase … Be prepared to put notes from lectures, seminars and reading in folder.

3 What is being asked? Know the format: Essay Report Presentation Seminar? If in doubt – ask your tutor. Write out the whole question Underline all the key words Look at the asking words – describe, analyse, evaluate, discuss Any other key words? Like using examples or illustrate with…?

4 Then: Analyse the question – all of it Have the overview – and fit the task to the learning outcomes These will be in the module booklet or available from module line via the university website Be creative – use creative brainstorming and notemaking strategies Dont know how? Go to a Learning Development Unit workshop and find out – also:

5 Action plan Why? Where? When? Tip: research one word from the question at a time What?

6 Step two Follow the action plan – undertake targeted research and active reading Make pattern notes Write on one side of the paper only Build paragraph patterns Put notes in folder – write Bibliography on the outside.

7 Tip: index cards Index cards are useful – and will save time writing up a bibliography at the end Author Date Title Publisher Place of publication A few key points.

8 Step three – stop! Stop reading Review your findings Re–read the question What gaps are there is your research?

9 Step four Plan the outline of essay, report, presentation, whatever … Use a study skills book to give you some ideas or collect a hand-out from the Learning Development Unit Or self register on webCT for the online Writing and Communication workshop See the IT helpdesk if you need assistance to create a webCT account.

10 Step five Prepare the first draft … A rough draft has gaps and mistakes Leave gaps – do not search for the right word – do not check spelling; tenses (not this time).

11 Step six Leave a time lag: the brain will work to close the gaps … How about a night out? Your action plan should leave you some time to enjoy yourself …

12 Step seven Review Revise Edit Struggle to write! Settle on a final draft.

13 Step eight Proof read Look for one type of mistake at a time Think SPAG: Spelling Punctuation And Grammar Get a friend or colleague to read over your work, or read it from back to front; bottom to top to spot errors.

14 Step nine Finished! Take a copy AND keep a copy Hand work in or before the deadline Check you have correctly completed the coursework documentation (module code; tutors name) Leave time to queue at the assessment unit and get a receipt.

15 Step TEN and the most important! Review your progress Tutor feedback – read it, review it, plan what you will do with it! SWOT – then see a learning development tutor! Ask if you can swap and read other peoples work.

16 Useful websites london/ldu/north-campus/study-skills-in-depth WebCT: Writing and communicating at university WebCT: Write to learn

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