At university a student's writing skills set him or her apart from other students in the eyes of the professor, ... and since not all guides give advice on all the problems that can be encountered, several have to be studied.
Author: Antje Matthäus
Publisher: GRIN Verlag
Seminar paper from the year 1997 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Other, Martin Luther University, course: Seminar Academic Discourse, language: English, abstract: Academic writing is a task that students, especially in the social sciences, engage in very frequently during the course of their studies. They have to compose essays, research reports, term papers etc., which, besides being the basis for students' evaluation, are to prepare them for their professional careers later in life. For those who will stay in the field, writing is going to be a major activity. At university a student's writing skills set him or her apart from other students in the eyes of the professor, but there is no real competition; all papers will be read by the instructors. In the professional world, however, with an abundance of academic texts and with limited time, only those articles will get attention that, besides containing profound reasoning, are at the same time well written, i.e. conveniently structured, precise, short, well formulated etc. This paper is part of a study on academic writing conducted within the seminar "Academic Discourse." The study examines students' works with regard to the authors' writing skills. It looks at the various components of a student term paper (linguistic features and structural elements) to detect the problems German students of English have. The objective is to create a guide for current and future students in this department experiencing difficulties in this area. It combines advice from published writing guides and professors, linguistic theory and personal experience, and is to be an introduction to academic writing for beginners and a reference booklet for the more experienced. We did not attempt to produce a "How-to" manual but rather tried to name the problem areas and to offer help on those with advice and examples. It cannot take the responsibility off the students for the further refinement of their skills by othe