Academic writing features include:
Formal, logical, cautious & unemotional language;
No slang, jargon, personal anecdotes, colloquiums, exclamation marks & contractions (‘e.g. won’t, can’t, dunno, kinda’);
Clear and succinct writing;
No vague, generic or irrelevant information;
Strong and arguable thesis statement;
Precise arguments supported with properly cited information from reliable sources;
Proofreading & editing.
Academic Vocabulary (key terms & concepts):
is the simplest type of academic writing. Its purpose is to provide facts or information. An example would be a summary of an article, a report, or film, etc. The kinds of instructional words for a purely descriptive assignment include: identify, report, record, summarize and define.
includes descriptive writing, but you also re-organize the facts and information you describe into categories, groups, parts, types or relationships.
has all the features of analytical writing (that is, information plus re-organization of the information), with the addition of your point of view.
is common for research, postgraduate and advanced undergraduate writing. It has all the features of persuasive writing, with the added feature of at least one other point of view. While persuasive writing requires you to have your own point of view on an issue or topic, critical writing requires you to consider at least two points of view, including your own.
ideas, facts, claims or arguments that neither belong to you nor are treated as a common knowledge. This type of information must always be cited in the paper according to the requirements of a particular formatting style.
is either a direct or indirect quotation or reference to a book, paper, or author. Missing citation lead to plagiarism.
refers to the words and phrases, the sentence structure, and the overall way the ideas are expressed in a document. Style operates principally on the word/phrase/sentence level and the paragraph level.
employs authoritative sources, such as authors, researchers and theorists in books or articles, who support your point of view, and refer to them in a paper.
excludes casual or conversational language, such as contractions or informal vocabulary.
avoids direct reference to people or feelings, and instead emphasizes objects, facts and ideas.
is a type of a clause or sentence in which a subject performs an action directly. It is preferred in academic writing because sentences describing who or what performs the action are easier to understand, i.e. they contribute to reading comprehension.
refers to the degree of difficulty in written material that a reader can accommodate without misunderstanding the content. This determines the style you use in addressing a particular reader.
is an arguable and debatable claim, usually the last sentence of an introduction, that controls the subject matter of the essay, is connected to each body paragraph and restated in the conclusion.
is the arrangement of and relations between the parts or elements of something complex, e.g. a sentence, paragraph or text.
is a set of words that are put together to convey a particular idea or argument. According to academic requirements, a sentence should contain both a subject and a predicate. The recommended length of a sentence fluctuates between 10 and 35 words.
is a part of a paper devoted to one idea, constructed with a topic sentence, and followed by logically arranged supporting sentences used to build the writer’s message.
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