Academic Writing Seminar

Academic Writing
Dr. Sonia Weiner

Course Description

The Academic Writing course introduces the student to genres and conventions of academic writing. Throughout the semester, the student will practice writing as an academic venture, utilizing the spirit of inquiry and curiosity alongside a set of writing techniques. Additional emphasis will be placed on acquiring academic research skills, and on adequately citing bibliographic sources.


Attendance is Compulsory. Missing more than 3 classes is grounds for failure.
Students are required to be active in class, and to come prepared. This entails: engaged reading of essays, writing in-class assignments, participating in group and class discussions.


Students will be graded on a total of 5 essays:
1. 3 Short Essays: length 1 or 2 pages (10% each assignment).
2. First Essay: Position Paper. Length 4 pages (20%).
3. Second Essay: Research Paper. Length 8 pages (50%).


Course Objectives
Learn how to write a position paper and a research paper:
Compose a strong thesis statement.
Organize an essay into a well-written introduction, body (claims), and conclusion.
Build well-constructed paragraphs (topic sentence, explanatory supporting sentences and evidence).
Identify and avoid logical fallacies.
Revise and edit all aspects of an essay.
Engage in critical close reading of texts and learn how to:
Distinguish between different kinds of sources and modes of address.
Identify arguments and organize ideas.
Identify how the text uses evidence.
Situate the author within a discourse, dialogue, discipline.
Develop skills in research methods and techniques, which include:
An in-depth introduction to the library and its databases.
Learning how to judge the validity and reliability of various reading materials.
Correctly use the MLA style of citing.
Summarize and paraphrase without plagiarizing.


While students are individually assisted with grammar, spelling and punctuation, students who have great difficulty in constructing grammatically correct sentences and composing sentences and paragraphs with correct spelling and punctuation are referred to the writing center for further assistance.

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