What You Need to Know about Academic Writing -- by DoctoralNet
Workshop about Academic writing with EndNote
However, even if you already have good skills for writing in a formal and objective style, that might not be enough for good academic writing. This is for three reasons.
First, you also have to write technically. This means that you need to develop a large vocabulary for the concepts and objects which are specific to your discipline(s) of study – e.g. linguistics, physics, accounting. Moreover, you will need to keep developing your technical vocabulary for the specialised areas within each discipline. For example, within the discipline of linguistics, there are different technical vocabularies for the fields of phonology, pragmatics and sociolinguistics.
Secondly, for each different discipline, there are not only differences in vocabulary, but also in style. For example, some disciplines (e.g. some of the Arts and Humanities disciplines) expect longer paragraphs, which include topic sentences to show how your argument is structured. In contrast, some disciplines (e.g. Sciences) expect short paragraphs, with no topic sentences, which are denser in factual information. As another example, some disciplines will accept more subjectivity (e.g. “My view is that…” ) while other disciplines avoid any use of personal pronouns (e.g. I, my, you, we).
Finally, you need to use not only the right style but also the right structure. Some types of text, such as an essay, have the same basic structure in all disciplines. However, there are some genres which have a different structure in each discipline (e.g. a case study, a report). There are also genres which are only used in one specific discipline (e.g. a legal problem answer, a proof).
There are many online resources, workshops and books about academic writing, which can help you develop your general skills and knowledge. However, to be a good academic writer, you will also need to keep learning the specific styles and structures for your subject area, as well as for each individual writing task. Some ways to do this are to:
Workshop about Academic writing with EndNote(1/3)
Very useful! I was looking for some information about academic writing when I stumbled upon this blog. Thanks for sharing these tips. English is not my first language I have started my PhD but first proposal that I wrote I got a bad review. Then reading the tip: write how you would speak, I feel that I should have done that, because I tried to write in a “academic sophisticated way” and I ended up creating convoluted sentences among other things. When you put “how to speak” for me it is not meaning that you have to write in a totally informal way but rather than to be short and concise about what you want to say.