Discuss the requirements and challenges of academic writing

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It is imperative to learn academic writing if one is enrolled in a university.  Being in the university meant that one is surrounded by academic rules of which one has to abide to effectively engage not only in the subjects taken but also with the community as a whole.  Admittedly, academic writing is one of the most challenging if not the most challenging mode of writing.  Unlike other forms writing where one merely expresses oneself, academic writing requires adherence to a strict set of requirements and rules for a writing to qualify as an academic writing.  These requirements in academic writing include proper research, presenting an effective academic argument, use of disciplined language, and proper referencing.

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One cannot just make a claim in academic writing without basis.  Otherwise, a claim or argument cannot be considered valid if it is without basis.  Writing based on mere opinions is not acceptable in academic writing not to mention that such writing would not qualify as an academic writing.  And this basis for argument can come only through proper research where the sources has to be carefully evaluated to be credible and legitimate before it can qualify to be used in a legitimate research.  Generally, they should come from peer-reviewed journals, books, and trusted websites.

Having the proper material as sources of support for one’s claim in academic writing is not enough.  They must be articulated using disciplined format and vocabulary in order to engage in an academic discourse. Disciplined format and vocabulary they have to follow the conventions of academic writing whose rules are many.  And the “Acquisition of technical jargon used in specific discipline” (Hold and Earl, nd pg. 6) is not easy as the challenge of learning the technical jargons of academic writing can be likened to learning a new language as it could sound very foreign.

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The sources used need in academic writing must also be properly cited and referenced.  In citing them, it is extremely critical that they should be properly paraphrased so as not to run the danger of committing plagiarism.  And the number of referencing styles can also be mind-boggling as there are too many of them (APA, MLA, Harvard, Chicago, IEEE).  And the omission of references to a research used can be considered as a breach of academic writing where the writing could be dismissed as plagiarized.  Proper referencing is necessary as it is considered as a badge of scholarship of a certain academic work.

In conclusion, academic writing can be considered as one of the rigorous if not one of the rigorous form writing because of the many rules and requirements that one must follow such as not using symbols in the text (Levy and Treacey, 2015).  Some of the rules and requirements of academic writing include proper research, presenting an effective academic argument, use of disciplined language, and proper referencing.  This means that one just cannot make a claim or an argument without support or basis.  And the basis of a claim or argument must come from sound research that is carefully evaluated to have come from legitimate and credible sources.  And these sources must be carefully paraphrased so as not be cited for plagiarism.  The arguments or claims made must also be expressed using academic jargons which is also a challenge to learn.  These requirements are many that it may take a while for student to learn.  But with persistence, the discipline of academic writing can be learned given time to practice.

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  1. Antoinette Holm and Catherine Earl (nd).  Academic writing. Lecture Slides: Ability Task for Week 4
  2. Levy and Treacey (2015).  Lecture Slides: Ability Task for Week 4
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