The Academic Essay: Rough Draft
Sitting down and thinking about how to write an academic essay? This essay will discuss all the things one should know in regard to writing an academic essay. Firstly this essay will discuss how to conduct research for an academic essay, and explain in detail what research should be considered. Secondly this essay will also discuss the planning and drafting of an academic essay, the exact format will be assessed. Thirdly this essay will also discuss plagiarism and how it should not be committed in any form of academic writing. Lastly this essay will discuss referencing and the format used in an academic essay. To begin with, what is an academic essay and what does one use it for? At university level one will be required to write many academic essays. Essays are written for many reasons, to explore, challenge, convince, entertain, etc. The academic essay is usually written to answer a question. It involves accurate research to inform the reader correctly. There is no foolproof method to produce a quality assignment. Every student will approach it differently; however, there are basic steps that have to be followed when writing an academic essay (Kissel, 1999). When doing research we should have an understanding of what is required, attending lectures or classes will help with this (Aires, 2010:4). Research is a very important part to an essay. Without research we will not be able to give the reader a true depiction of information. Extensive research is fundamental to providing the reader with a wide range of knowledge. When doing research one should remember to use many different sources. Using techniques such as skimming, over viewing and scanning will help you to gain an overall understanding of the information being researched quickly. The topic of your assignment should always be kept in mind. One should not go overboard, stick to the relevance of your topic when doing research. Always remember to take bibliographic details of the sources from where the information was sourced (Kissel, 1999). When looking for research be sure the source that is being used is creditable, especially when using the internet. Using a source such as Wikipedia is not safe; the information on that website is not all of the time accurate. If one is not sure about the information that has been obtained double check it. When planning ones essay there are many things to look at. “A common failing in essays is the absence of any sense of overall unity and coherence. Teachers and lecturers frequently complain that, in writing their essays, students seem to write a paragraph and then pause to think, ‘now what can I say next?’, then another paragraph, another pause and so on. The points made in the essay seem to have been set down in random order, with little connection between them, and no sense of a coherently developing argument” (Visser, 1992:14) (Aires, 2010:4). As we can see what Visser is stating is that it is essential to plan, without planning one will end up with a mess. Once the information has been gathered one has to structure it. Most academic essays follow three elements: introduction, body and conclusion (Kissel, 1999). The introduction should be a short paragraph introducing the topic on which the essay will be written about. It should show what aspects your essay will be focusing on. The introduction is important in grabbing the reader’s attention. The body follows the introduction. It will be made up of many paragraphs. Each paragraph will discuss a topic in detail. The order of the paragraphs should be logical. One must use reliable evidence in your body helping to make the information as accurate as possible. Lastly you will have a conclusion. The conclusion will be a brief summary of the points you have discussed. The conclusion should not be long, only a short paragraph (Aires: 2010:5). When writing an academic essay there is a few things that can guide you. Never use a metaphor, simile or...
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