Academic writing skills for international students

Pin it What are Academic Writing Skills? The skill of writing is required throughout our life for various purposes.

Academic writing skills for international students

You can follow her on Twitter nataschachtena. As a foreign-language instructor at UCLA, I never considered it part of my job to teach students how to write in English. So when there was recently an English essay requirement added to our foreign-language curriculum, I took it for granted that my students had the experience and skills required to write a short critical reflection paper.

Sure, my graduates did an excellent job, but the quality of undergraduate papers varied widely. As I graded a pile of papers without structure, coherence, or proper use of grammar, I realized that many of the writing strategies we grad students take for granted e.

So I went back to the assignment guidelines and my lesson plans and redesigned them completely. And, indeed, the second time I taught that course the assignments were much better and, as a result, much more fun to read and grade.

With UCLA being a highly competitive school to get into, I assumed that my students would be star writers well, kinda. After talking to my students, I also discovered that most of their high school assignments called for information retrieval, summaries, or statements of opinion—not the kind of argumentative or analytical writing required at the university level.

Understanding who was sitting in my classroom was essential for tailoring my instruction to fit their needs.

Write my essay no matter what the topic is

To help students deliver better papers in your class, put your energy into preparation: For example, a student who has learned how to write an excellent analytical paper in a comparative literature course may not know how to write the kind of argumentative paper that is required in a political philosophy course.

The obvious perk for you as a TA is that it reduces the number of papers you have to read and grade. But it also improves their quality overall.

academic writing skills for international students

Getting students into groups usually means combining different strengths; that results in more thorough research, more sophisticated arguments, and more creative thinking.

We usually consider strengths and weaknesses of different arguments and approaches as a whole class. But even if students are choosing their own topics, one can go beyond elaborating on their expectations and giving students a chance to ask questions.

For example, you may want to start the discussion by asking several students to explain how they might go about approaching the paper. Some international students grew up in educational systems that emphasize rote memorization over critical thinking.

Others have been taught to take a strong, passionate stand that doesn't acknowledge counter-arguments. When I first started teaching, I tended to grade such papers harshly. But the more time I spend teaching, the more I come to see that students need time—some more, some less—to adjust to US conventions and expectations.

And that open discussion and understanding might be more important to them than forcefully trying to recalibrate their writing in a quarter or semester.

Do you have other suggestions for improving student writing? Please share your ideas in the comments below!Academic Skills consultations are available throughout the semester.


To book a consultation, click on a name below to find out when we are available and choose a day and time which suits you. When you have booked your consultation, the academic writing consultant will confirm the place for your meeting. International Student Academic Support International students are an important part of the WOU community bringing a diversity of nationalities, cultures, and languages.

ISAS was created to support the academic success of these students and the faculty who instruct them. What Is “Academic” Writing? by L. Lennie Irvin This essay is a chapter in Writing Spaces: Readings on Writing, Volume 1, a peer-reviewed open textbook series for the writing classroom, and is published through Parlor Press.

Identifying Gaps in Academic Writing of ESL Students* in English and poor academic performance of international students studying at both university and college provided to students plays a critical role in further advancing students’ academic writing skills.

Instructors’. Academic Writing is organized in a way that makes sense for teaching writing skills. The content covers a diverse body of samples from various fields, so it works wonderfully for Author: Stephen Bailey. 3 Ways International Students Can Improve Academic Writing Improving your English academic writing isn't a quick or easy task, but constant practice will pay off at school and in your career.

Academic Skills Program (ASP) < University of Illinois at Chicago