The Elements of Academic Writing Workshop Series


This series consists of eight workshops that leads participants through the writing process, from understanding the assignment all the way through to editing and revising the paper once it is written. Participants who successfully complete the series (attending and doing the preparatory work for at least six of the eight workshops, as well as completing the final reflective analysis) will receive CoCurricular Record recognition on their transcripts. The format of the workshops emphasizes the hands-on application of the principles and approaches that are taught: participants will work with material from their own courses and disciplines as they acquire the relevant skills and understandings linked to each stage of the writing process. 

Total Number of Hours: 21-40

What is required: Participants must attend one iteration of each of the seven modules, topics listed below; these modules are offered in both Fall and Winter terms, and participants can attend modules in either term. The modules comprise 12 hours of instruction, and the participants must complete 6 of the 8 homework assignments (1 for each of the modules) and a Reflective Writing Assignment. The 6 required homework assignments and the Reflective Writing Assignment will take a minimum of 10.5 hours to complete. Global commentary on each of the homework assignments will be provided.

Registration is required. Register here!


1) How to understand your writing assignment

Writing assignments come in many different forms and are described in many different ways. This workshop teaches you the skills you need to a) analyze your assignment, b) understand your instructor’s expectations, and c) use that understanding to plan out your strategy for completing the assignment.

2) How to create outlines and reverse outlines

This workshop focuses on the structure of written texts. It teaches you how to perceive, critique and model the structures that give writing its form and express its arguments.

3) How to critique and present your argument or purpose (thesis/introductions)

Good academic writing is transparent: right from the start, the reader should have a clear understanding of the author’s purpose, argument, and structure. In this workshop, you first discuss and critique introductions of published articles, and then practice creating introductions.

4) How to use and cite information from others

Academic writing depends on integrating the research of others with your own work, but this is not always an easy thing to do smoothly. In this workshop, you analyze the ways in which writers in your discipline use and cite the work of others, and then you practice doing it yourself and critiquing your work.

5) How to write clear, convincing, and well-structured paragraphs

The paragraph is the basic unit of academic thought: as such, it is crucially important to be able to write paragraphs that hang together, that guide the reader, and that effectively develop your overall argument. This workshop will teach you how to create paragraphs that are coherent and cohesive, and that clearly express their point.

6) How to write sentences that flow

In this workshop, we work outward from the subject-verb-object “kernel” that is at the heart of every English sentence, learning how to arrange and punctuate sentences so that they are easy and pleasurable to read.

7) How to edit your work (overview)

This workshop deals with editing, or revising, on a large scale: it shows you how to see a piece of writing as a whole, how to assess it, and how to figure out what to do to fix it on the macro level.

8) How to edit your work (line by line)

This workshop deals with editing on the sentence level: it shows you how to identify and fix awkward or incoherent sentences, and helps you develop your knowledge of grammar.

Registration is required.  Register here!