Introduction to Academic Writing

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At the university level, academic expectations change considerably in comparison to what you have experienced while in secondary education. You will soon notice that the quantity of work you are expected to engage with has increased. Moreover, oftentimes the lecturers expect you to read a large amount of material and work independently over several hours. Thus, managing this sort of workload can become quite challenging.

In addition, the quality of the work has to do differs from what you were used to during secondary education. It is no longer enough just to understand course material and summarise it for your exams. It is also be expected that you develop a solid engagement with new ideas by critically reflecting and analysing them, establishing consistent and coherent connections, reaching conclusions, or finding new ways of thinking about a given subject. All in all, this process means that from an educational point of view, you are reaching a higher level of intellectual maturity.

Having said that, this course has been carefully tailored to introduce students to the practice of writing for academic purposes. It will prepare students for work in university-level courses taught in English in which research writing is a requirement (i.e., undergraduate, postgraduate, master and PhD).

It provides an introduction to and application of key principles of effective and efficient academic writing. Moreover, this course also displays key techniques, guidelines and suggestions to improve your academic written communication. It will give hands-on experience in drafting, organising and revising your academic texts.

Among the several topics addressed include essay structure, coherence, flow, signposting, main characteristics of academic writing, citation styles, and additional sources of information.

What you’ll learn

  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of basic academic writing structure, including introduction, body, conclusion, and bibliography.
  • Demonstrate understanding of and apply the principles of effective paragraph structure.
  • How to use signposting and linking words to construct well-structured argumentations.
  • Several practical and useful tips and techniques to improve your academic writing.
  • Where to find additional sources of information to expand your knowledge regarding academic writing and citation.


  • This course is aimed at those whose English language ability is at intermediate level or above (B1 according to the European Common Framework of Reference for Languages – CEFR). If you have taken an IELTS test, this is equivalent to a score of above 6.0; if you have taken a TOEFL test then this is approximately equivalent to a score above 550 (paper-based test) or 91 (iBT).
  • Predisposition to learn new concepts and consolidate what you already know.

Who this course is for:

  • The target audience of this course comprises students in tertiary education (i.e., undergraduate, postgraduate, masters and PhD) who are not native English speakers, although native speakers might also benefit from it.

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