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A Brief Overview of Academic Writing

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  • Post last modified:August 30, 2023

Every student has to undergo the hassle of academic writing at least once in their student life. Academic writing, also called college paper writing, uses the logical flow and accurate language in a formal tone that speaks about a particular subject or topic of research.

There are different types and styles of academic paper writing, which is essential to understand before entering university. So, if you’re struggling with it, here’s a guide to get you started!

Difference between Academic writing and other forms of writing

An academic paper can be written in the form of research papers, essays, a thesis, or research proposals in a formal tone for scholarly publications. Although it follows the same idea as other texts, it differs in the topics, tone, and ideas. For instance, a journal article is written with the intent to provide unbiased information with the help of a precise thesis statement. The thesis statement generally includes an entire argument to prove one’s point. It also has a central idea, and the writer (student) has to prove their thoughts to the readers. Such papers are backed by research, theories, causes, and effects of factual information.

Academic Writing

However, in personal writing or other forms of informal writing, the approach is informal with a causal approach and controversial language. They do not require the writers to conduct extensive research on topics; the content is generally based on personal information and experiences.

Elements of Academic writing

Depending on the type of writing, the elements of writing vary from one paper to another. However, some common elements of academic writing, irrespective of their type, are as follows:

  • Academic vocabulary: Every field has its own jargon and conceptual vocabulary, which helps improve the authenticity of the paper. For instance, general academic vocabulary includes analysis, concept, construct, and specific to law, including tribunal, dismissal, jurisdiction, and so on.
  • References: Some of the main essences of academic papers are brought forward by their references, which helps establish a more authoritative  tone and provide factual information. Such papers include facts and research information from reliable sources like journal articles, news, case studies, etc., which are included in the citation. Even if an idea is borrowed, it still needs referential backing. MLA, Chicago Manual Style, and American Psychological Association are some of the standard style guides
  • Third-Part point of view: One of the key differences between personal writing and academic writing is their reference point of view. Generally, such papers use third-party points of view like he, she, they, etc., and avoid using I and me, to enhance the papers’ objectivity. This helps in focusing on the problem statement instead of personal experiences.
  • Well-structured: An outline, introduction, thesis statement, conclusion, and many more structured elements form a well-written research paper or an academic paper, which differs from personal writing.