Category Archives: authority in writing

leave a good last impression – the thesis conclusion

Writing the conclusion to the thesis is hard. It’s often done badly. And it’s something that doctoral researchers often get asked to do more work on. Not at all what they/you need. Writing a conclusion is important. The conclusion is … Continue reading

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avoiding the laundry list literature review

I’ve been asked to say more about the laundry list literature review. The laundry list is often called ‘He said, she said” – as one of the most usual forms of the laundry list is when most sentences start with a … Continue reading

Posted in authority in writing, he said, she said, laundry list, literature review, passive voice, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 35 Comments

writing an academic ransom note

I’m in Australia at present. Inevitably I’m running some writing workshops. Inevitably I’m playing with some new strategies. I really do like to try out new things to see how they work, what they might do. And one of the … Continue reading

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boostering your introduction and conclusion

Academic writing is known for its use of qualifiers – usually words which tone down the claims that are made. We academics know it is impossible/incredibly difficult to establish a generalisable result though research, and our writing signals this difficulty … Continue reading

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exorcise the inner “doctoral student” from your writing

Some of us can probably remember the film The Exorcist. It was one of those “demon child” films so popular in the 1970s. It featured Linda Blair as a possessed young teen – her green-slime spitting, 360 degree swiveling head … Continue reading

Posted in "doctoral student", academic writing, authority in writing, style, voice | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

what’s with the name doctoral ‘student’?

One of the things I’ve been trying really hard to get over is the notion of the doctoral ‘student’. This is by far the most common way to refer to people doing a PhD, and it’s pretty hard not to … Continue reading

Posted in authority in writing, doctoral research, identity, student or researcher | Tagged , , , | 65 Comments

quotations – handle with care

Quotations are dangerous. The way that you use quotations can give away whether you think you are still writing as a student, or writing as an expert scholar in your own right. Student assignments are often heavily strewn with quotations. … Continue reading

Posted in authority in writing, contribution, quotations | Tagged , , | 13 Comments