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Academic Discourse

Academic Writing

Paragraph writing
For useful ideas on building your paragraphs when writing an essay. Use the links on the first page to see: topic sentences, flow of information, signaling, cohesion. There are exercises and a test.

Rhetorical functions in academic writing
Get a list of rhetorical functions to choose from: description, reporting, narrative, definition, classification, comparison and contrast etc. There are samples of authentic texts and tables which present the language features used in each one of the rhetorical functions. There are also exercises and tests but no key.

Writing resources
The Writing Centre of Emory University with resources on developing academic writing skills. Click on ‘Writing resources’ to find advice on paragraphing, using transitions, revising and editing. 

Advice on academic writing
Advice on how to plan and construct an academic essay. Click on one of the options available and you will be guided through the basic principles of academic writing. Links to other resources.

Academic Reading

Critical reading
This site aims to make you aware of the procedures involved in critical reading. Click on the steps provided and develop the fundamental cognitive processes which will enable you to become an efficient reader. 

Reading Literature
The site explores the basic characteristics of several literary genres and provides specific guidelines to analyzing and comprehending each one. It also provides tips for academic essay writing.

Language and Learning Online
A collection of resources from the University of Monash, Learning and Teaching Support Online, to help students improve their academic performance. The site contains tutorials, examples, and interactive exercises focusing on increasing proficiency in reading as well as in writing, speaking, listening, studying and grammar.

Academic Style

Academic writing style
To see a list of features of academic writing. This part focuses on formality, complexity, explicitness, objectivity and hedging. Use the menu on the left to visit pages on a variety of topics such as plagiarism, references, citation etc. A very good site on academic writing and the language used in academic texts.

Part of a web page on how to build an argument, it provides a short description of qualification.

Qualifying your arguments
A short multiple-choice quiz on qualification. You can complete the quiz and receive instant feedback.

Study Skills

Effective studying
This site emphasizes the role of effective study habits in successful studying. Its aim is to help learners develop good study habits. 

Study skills self-help information
Online study skills, worksheets and questionnaires for improving learners’ academic performance from the Cook Counseling Centre of Virginia Tech. Click on some of the topics available to get help with a great number of problem areas when studying. 

A site with a selection of the ten best sites for developing and improving study skills.


Taking Lecture and Class Notes
The site offers handouts which provide tips on how to recall more information from your lectures through active listening and purposeful notetaking. Suggestions are also provided on how to use notes regularly to review.

Answering Exam Questions

Understanding the question
You will find the basics for answering exam questions, from understanding the question to useful vocabulary. It includes exercises and a test.

Organising the answer
You will find the basics of how to organize an essay. Exercises and a test are included.