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Renos Writing Renditions!

The Academic Essay


Inside you will find: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Five sections that explain the essay in stages. Details about the elements of an academic essay. Hot tips about how to write an excellent essay. Detailed questions that help you review each section. A table of contents on page 2 for your convenience.

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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format

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EAP Understanding The Essay Format


Level: Intermediate

The Purpose of This Package


The purpose of this text is to explain the features of an academic essay and their functions. After reading this booklet you will understand the main features of essays and how they are used differently in the three different genres (kinds) of academic essay.

How to use this package


This booklet is divided into five sections. We recommend that you only do one at a time, take a break and then return. You will find that each step adds more information and complexity, so that as you move through each stage, you will be reviewing what happened before and adding to your knowledge. Each section should take from 20-30 minutes to complete.

Written by Reno Dal

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copyright 29/04/14

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Table of Contents

WHAT IS AN ACADEMIC ESSAY?

FIELDS OF INFLUENCE: DIAGRAM

ESSAY FEATURES: THE BASIC CONCEPTS

14

ESSAY FEATURES: IN DETAIL

21

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

29

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What is an academic essay?


Writing an essay is not a normal thing to do. In your normal everyday life you would never need to do it and in fact, if you did, for example, write an academic essay to your mother, she would think you were a bit strange. But when you go to university, you do need to do things that you never had to do before and writing an essay is one of them. So whats so different? Well, firstly, you can be personal with your mum. You can tell her how you feel, but in an academic essay you cant do that. Instead, what you should do is demonstrate that you have understood your course and have done extra research that supports your ideas. In other words your academic essay is about facts and research, not about how you feel. This also affects how you write the essay. For example, right now I am using a familiar style, addressing you personally, as if we were talking. This is called colloquial language and theres nothing wrong with it, but it is not used in academic writing. Why not? Well not only because it is too personal but also because it is a bit casual, a bit vague. It works just fine when you are talking with people but in academic writing we need to be much more accurate and much more scientific. More logical, if you like. Academic writing is more like this: Writing an academic essay is an exercise in

communication which differs markedly from other forms of writing. Thus, it requires a different kind of approach and a style which is particular to the academic environment. As a result, it is necessary to adjust not only the way in which the project is approached, but how it is achieved.

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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format You will notice that this is not like normal speech. It is not personal; no first or second person pronouns (I, you) or questions. It is often in the passive voice. e.g. The way in which the project is approached

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not How we approach the project. It also follows a logical path by first introducing the general idea, what we call the Topic Sentence, and then explaining that idea in detail, what we call the Elaboration. An essay is also different in how it is presented; it has its own form. Basically, in an essay we introduce the main idea, explain what it means and tell the reader what important arguments or ideas will be presented. We call this the Introduction, which is the first paragraph of the essay. It tells the audience what we understand by the topic and explains the main ideas that we will present in the essay. Once we have done that we need to move on to the more detailed information. This is called the Body; the main part of the essay where your ideas are explained in detail. This has a special format as well; each paragraph needs to be announced so that the reader knows what it is about and what it will do. This might include a staging device that tells us its purpose (eg however, on the other hand, moreover) in relation to the other paragraphs or it might only be a topic sentence that informs us of the main idea of the paragraph, for example: In terms of environmental factors, the most

common was found to be air pollution. Here we see that the essay is considering the environment and this paragraph will be talking about air pollution. Thus the reader has a very clear of idea of what to expect in the sentences that follow. Once the body text is completed it is time to end the essay with a conclusion. The Conclusion has two main features: the summary and the concluding statement. The summary adds together all the arguments of the body text. It is a bit like a list of the sub-topics. After
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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format that, the essay comes to an end with some sort of all-encompassing statement, something that gives the reader a clear and simple result for the whole text. The concluding statement is slightly different for each of the three essay genres (styles). Now of course there are many ways to write an essay and some of them are a bit more complex than this, but for the moment our aim is to understand the basic elements of a good essay. Once you have understood these basics then you can proceed to develop your own ideas with a clear understanding of what you are trying to achieve.

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Fundamental Rules
1. Language is more formal, less personal than everyday speech. 2. Words and expressions are more compressed. They are denser and arranged differently. 3. Ideas are logical rather than emotional. They need to arranged in related groups and have those relationships clearly explained. 4. Planning is essential. Whereas you might not plan a letter to your mother but just sit down and write ideas as they come to you, in an academic essay, you need to organize your thoughts and make a plan of what you are going to write. 5. Structure is also very important. Basically, you should tell uswhat you will tell us in general terms (introduction), tell us in detail (body text) and then tell us what you have told us in general terms, again (conclusion). 6. Research is also very important because an academic essay is not primarily about your opinion. You might use the essay to express your opinion but you must do it using other peoples research and conclusions. We call this referencing. 7. Understanding is also very important. You will need to read, understand and analyse your references. You will have to decide what is important and what is not. Then you will need to understand the relationships between your different sets of data and arrange them in a sensible and useful pattern. 8. Finally, review is essential. You cant just sit down and write an essay in one sitting. A good essay has to be revised and improved.

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Review Questions- True or False


An academic essay: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. expresses how you feel. shows how you understood the course demonstrates the extent of your research uses language just like talking to someone uses colloquial language is accurate and scientific is like a letter you would write to your mother uses personal pronouns (I, you, we) has no form or structure T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F

10. The introduction gives detailed information. 11. The introduction has the main ideas of the essay 12. The Body of the essay expresses your opinions. 13. The conclusion has three main parts. 14. The last paragraph should have a summary. 15. The concluding statement is your opinion.

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Review Answers- True or False


An academic essay: 1. 2. 3. expresses how you feel. shows how you understood the course demonstrates the extent of your research F T T F F T F F F F T F F T T

4. uses language just like talking to someone 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. uses colloquial language is accurate and scientific is like a letter you would write to your mother uses personal pronouns (I, you, we) has no form or structure

10. The introduction gives detailed information. 11. The introduction tells the main ideas of the essay 12. The Body of the essay expresses your opinions. 13. The conclusion has three main parts. 14. The last paragraph should have a summary. 15. The concluding statement is your opinion.

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Fields of Influence: Diagram


The Onion Analogy

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The Onion Analogy


The diagram on the previous page illustrates the way in which the parts of an academic essay go together a bit like the layers of an onion.

Peeling the Onion=Writing the Essay Structure


The layers of an onion represent how each set of ideas is contained within another set of ideas. This helps us understand the structures of an academic essay. The Introduction as the Outer Layers of the Onion The Opening Statement talks about what will be said in the whole essay. In a sense, so does the Concluding Statement. Thus, they both enclose the whole essay: the outer skin. Next comes the Definition or Definitions (you probably need more than one). This is NOT a dictionary definition, rather it is your definitionthe meaning you will use throughout the essay. The Outline or Scope tells the reader what will happen in the Body. It is a bit like a list of contents. It does not talk about the Conclusion. It only tells us the main ideas that will be looked at in the body of the essay. The Body Text as the Centre of the Onion The Body Text is where the detailed ideas of the essay are expressed. This is where the arguments are presented and where the references are used. There should be at least three paragraphs in the body text.

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The Conclusion- Back to the Outer Layers of the Onion The Summary is just like the Outline or Scope. It tells the reader what has been said in the body text. By reading the summary the reader gets a clear sense of the main ideas of the body text and how they have been developed. The concluding statement wraps up the whole essay, giving the reader a clear sense of what has been said by the body text arguments. The concluding statement is like the opening statement because they both enclose the whole essay; they both refer to what the whole essay is saying.

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Review Questions- True or False


1. The opening statement encompasses the whole essay. 2. The definition must come from a dictionary. 3. You should use a dictionary to understand key words. 4. The body text should have at least three paragraphs. 5. The summary is totally different from the scope. 6. The summary is like a list. 7. The concluding statement refers to the whole essay. T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F

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Review Answers- True or False


1. The opening statement encompasses the whole essay. 2. The definition must come from a dictionary. 3. You should use a dictionary to understand key words. 4. The body text should have at least three paragraphs. 5. The summary is totally different from the scope. 6. The summary is like a list. 7. The concluding statement refers to the whole essay. T F T T F T T

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Essay Features: The Basic Concepts


Introduction
Opening Statement: gives the reader an idea of the subject area. In a sense, the opening statement answers the question, in general terms, and informs the reader of your approach to the topic. The Opening Statement gives the reader information necessary to understand how you will answer the question and how you will approach the topic. There are three genres (types) of essay, and each one requires a different kind of opening statement. Each essay genre operates in a particular way. In the explanation essay the writer tells us how something operates or why it is as it is. In the argument essay the writer presents a point of view and argues for that idea. In the discussion essay, the writer presents differing points of view on an issue, looks at how they relate to each other and develops a judgement. Explain: a general background statement that names and shows the importance of the topic. For example, Pollution has become a cause for serious concern in developing countries only towards the end of the 20th century, as the damage from industrial wastes began to threaten the health of the general population. Argue: a position statement that tells the reader whether you will be arguing in favour of or against the proposition. For example, It is the thesis of this essay that political corruption is the main cause of pollution in the modern world.
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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format OR While environmentalists often assert that industrialization is the main cause of pollution, it is the thesis of this essay that political corruption has been the main contributor to the degradation of our ecosystem. Discuss: a statement of issue provides the reader with an understanding of the two sides of the discussion (issue) that will be explored. For example, While environmentalists often assert that industrialization is the main cause of pollution, political corruption must also be considered as a major contributor to the degradation of our ecosystem. Definition: shows how you understand the topic, how you will

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approach it and how you will limit its boundaries. This is not according to a dictionary but rather your definition, and how you will use the terms in your essay. You should define all the key terms of the question that might be vague or confusing. For example, For the purpose of this essay, pollution will refer to the physical process whereby the natural and urban environment is degraded by human activity. Now you will note that I used human activity, but I could just as easily have written industrial activity meaning that I would concentrate on industrial pollution. It all depends on what the essay will focus on and how you will use the terms. It might also depend on your references. If they use a particular concept, you have to make sure that you are thinking along the same lines. If your reference says children means people under 18 years of age, then your definition has to take this into account. In other words, your definition must fit with the way the expression is used in your essay. (Please note that normally it might be more appropriate to define children as under 12 years of age.)
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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format Scope/Outline: tells what specific areas you will talk about in the body text. For example, This essay will investigate the main causes of pollution which are industrial development, political corruption and individual disinterest.

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Thus, the scope introduces the body text, telling us that there will be three main issues. These three main issues would each have one paragraph, at least, in the body of the essay. Each of these ideas needs to be in the same order as that used in the body text which is why it is very important to plan your essay carefully in an exam (due to lack of time). It is also why, when attempting a long essay, the introduction is often written last, after all the other elements have been decided.

Body Text
This must have at least three paragraphs which provide detailed information about the topic. Each one will have a topic sentence followed by elaboration (detail). For example, Industrial development has caused the single greatest change in the planetary sphere. Beginning with the cities of England in the 17th century (Smith 1999, p. 12), the process of industrialization and its accompanying urbanization, led to the development of highly polluted cities, land, air and waterways. As the process spread across the Western world, the overall degradation of the environment soon followed (Smith 1999, p. 14). Only in the latter quarter of the 20th century did pollution controls begin in the West, by which time most industrial activity had been moved to Asia and the developing world, thus spreading the impact of industrial development and its accompanying pollution across the entire world.

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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format Here you will see that the first sentence tells us the topic (industrial development) and gives us a sense of what will happen in the paragraph (planetary sphere, meaning all around the world). Thus we call this the topic sentence. After that, the idea is explained, with

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references [(Smith 1999, p. 12 ])] which tell us where the facts come from.

Conclusion
Summary: tells the reader what you have said and reminds the reader of what happened in the body text. For example, In conclusion, this essay has investigated the main causes of pollution; industrial development, political corruption and individual disinterest. OR In conclusion, this essay has outlined the main contributors to the problem of pollution; how industrial development leads to pollution where there is no government control, how corruption often means that government control does not work and finally, how the disinterest of the general populace allows this situation to continue. In a short essay, the summary might be a set of noun groups whereas in a longer essay, it might be a sequence of sentences that explain the main conclusions of the body paragraphs. Note that the order of the points must be the same throughout the essay: in the outline/scope, in the body text and in the summary. Concluding Statement: finishes off the essay by referring to the main idea of the whole text. Explanation Essay: In the case of an explanation essay, this is called the Statement of Relative Importance (SORI) which tells us that
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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format one of the main points of the essay is the most significant. For example, Of these three, the disinterest of the general public is the most important because, if the community was to express its concerns strongly, then corrupt and uncaring practices would cease. The concluding statement is your opinion, but not expressed in a personal manner. In other words, you cant write: So I think it is a good idea to pollute the environment. Rather it needs to be expressed as the logical result of your argument. For example, you

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could write: From the above factors, it can be clearly seen that in the long term pollution poses a threat to all life on earth and so, it is only logical that it should be controlled as soon as possible. This way you have stated your opinion, but you have done so in an academic and logical manner. By the way, each essay type needs a different kind of concluding statement. Argument Essay: This type ends with a restatement of the position- the idea that started the essay. For example, From the preceding argument it can be clearly seen that political corruption is the main cause of pollution in the modern world. Discussion Essay: This type ends with a judgement, where the two sides of the issue are finally resolved and one side of the argument is chosen. For example, From the above arguments, though it can be seen that industrialization is a source of pollution, it is corruption that actually creates the conditions for pollution to occur and persist.

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Review Questions
1. Matching Exercise- Put the three elements in correct order. Genre Explain Argue Discuss True or False 2. Essay definitions are quotes from dictionaries. 3. You should define every word in the question. 4. You should define each important noun group that appears in the essay question. 5. The order of the scope doesnt matter. 6. The scope can be a bit like a list. T/F 7. Each paragraph of the body starts with detailed information and references. 8. The summary tell us what you said in the body. 9. There is only one kind of concluding statement. T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F Name position statement background statement statement of issue Features shows importance balanced ideas your side of argument

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Review Answers
1. Matching Exercise- Put the three elements in correct order. Genre Explain Argue Discuss True or False 2. Essay definitions are quotes from dictionaries. 3. You should define every word in the question. 4. You should define each important noun group that appears in the essay question. 5. The order of the scope doesnt matter. 6. The scope can be a bit like a list. T 7. Each paragraph of the body starts with detailed information and references. 8. The summary tell us what you said in the body. 9. There is only one kind of concluding statement. F T F T F F F Name background statement position statement statement of issue Features shows importance your side of argument balanced ideas

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Essay Features: In Detail


Now lets look at the different elements in detail. These will be considered with the three essay genres in mind, which are 1. Explanation: to explain how something works or how it is composed 2. Argument: to logically argue for one point of view against other ideas, from the beginning of the essay 3. Discussion: to present the various sides of an issue in a balanced way and then logically decide which side is correct.

Introduction
Dont forget: the introduction should be one paragraph ONLY!

Opening Statement
The opening statement immediately indicates to the reader the genre (type) of essay you are writing, why your topic is important and how you intend to approach it. So, of course, it must relate to the essay question or the essay might be marked down as irrelevant- not about the topic at hand. It is therefore very important to analyse the question carefully so you understand it before you begin to write. The opening statement is a general answer to the essay question. In fact, it must answer the question or the essay might be marked down for being irrelevant.

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RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format This is very important; understand the question. Analyse it very carefully. There are three different kinds of opening statements; background, position statement and statement of issue. Background Statement- Explanation Essay This gives the reader a sense of the history or the context of the subject. For the last ten years media reports have sensationalised violent crimes, increasing their presence in the media and creating a false sense of insecurity in the general population. Position Statement- Argument Essay This clearly states that the writer will be arguing one side of the argument. This is the argument that will be the theme of the whole essay. Increased media coverage has given the impression that violent crimes are on the increase while, in fact, the actual number of crimes has been decreasing for some time. Statement of Issue- Discussion Essay This presents both sides of the argument that will be explored in the essay. The two sides are presented in a balanced manner; neither of

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them seems to be more right or wrong at the beginning of the essay. While there have been strong claims from the media to clamp down on violent crimes, official reports suggest that these crimes have actually been decreasing over the last ten years.

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Definition Interpreting the Question


This tells the reader how you interpret the key (important) elements of the question. If the question was: How has the media created a false sense of violent crime in modern culture? then you would define media, violent crime and modern culture. Why? Because these are all elements of the question and are as, as we say, open to interpretation. In other words, there are a lot of different ways that they can be understood and you need to demonstrate how you understand them and how you will be using them in your essay. As a general rule do not divide up noun groups when you define them. For example, for violent crime- define the idea of that kind of crime, not violence and then crime because that is not the point of the question. Complex noun groups are one idea and should be treated that way. Can you use a dictionary at any time for your definitions? Yes. In fact, you should always go to an English dictionary to make sure that you understand the terms being used. After that you need to develop a way of expressing those concepts so that they suit your essay. Another rule is this: definitions must not be circular. In other words, you cant use the word you are explaining to explain itself. For example, you cant say: Violent crime is a crime where people get hurt.

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This means crime=crime and tells us nothing new. It doesnt explain what crime is. Your reader might think that crime is the same as accident because people can get hurt in an accident as well. Instead you would need to use a different approach, for example: For the purpose of this essay, violent crime will refer to intentional acts that inflict bodily harm and attract the attention of the authorities because they are against the law. Note how the words violent crime dont appear in the second half of the definition. Also note the use of for the purpose of this essay. This phrase allows you to focus the meaning of your definition more clearly and tells the reader how your essay will focus the meaning. In this case, the distinction is that, in this essay, violent crime will ONLY refer to occasions when the police or other government authorities are aware of it. Therefore, undetected crimes will not be a part of the following essay. You should also note how to make sure that the assessor knows that you are giving a definition. You will see some essays that use the verb to be for their definitions, for example, Violent crime is the result of social problems, often beginning in early childhood, that develop into forms of behaviour that are so extreme they lead to the imprisonment of the perpetrator. Now that is quite OK, but it could easily be confused with part of the opening statement. You dont want that, as the assessor is looking to see if you are following the structure required. There are two easy ways to make sure that the assessor knows what you intend; use the words define as or refer to (they have a very

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similar meaning), and so you will clearly indicate what you are doing, for example, For the purpose of this essay, violent crime will be defined as those forms of behaviour, involving physical harm to others, that can lead to the imprisonment or execution of the perpetrator. NB: will be defined as could be replaced with will refer to You might notice the format for the purpose of this essay thats important as it clearly indicates that this is the concept you will be using later in your text. It is thus your definition- not something you just picked up from a dictionary. You might also notice the use of the future tense (will). You will see essays that use the present simple rather than the future tense. In doing that, they give a sense of the essay being a presence rather than a journey. This is one of the things thats up to you. What do you feel best conveys the experience of your essay? When in doubt, use the future tense; it just makes it clearer and easier to distinguish from the rest of the introduction.

Scope or Outline Itemising the Body Text


This essay will consider four important causes of pollution; human disinterest, the personalization of transport, the profit motive in industrialization and the psychological castration of the patriarchal hegemony. This is a scope/outline. It tells us about the main action of the body text.

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Again, you will see this in the present tense (it considers) rather than the future (will consider) and again, using the future tense clearly indicates to the reader that this is the scope. The scope can use a variety of verbs, all of which have a similar meaning (eg. explore, consider, investigate). They all suggest that this will be an exploration of a concept or area of knowledge. It is perfectly acceptable to use the expressions of the scope list in the topic sentences of your body paragraphs. The scope should also tell us how many body paragraphs there will be: This essay will consider four important causes of pollution; (A) human disinterest, (B) the personalization of transport, (C) the profit motive in industrialization and (D) the psychological castration of the patriarchal hegemony. Thus this essay would have at least four paragraphs in the body text. (One more than is required.) The scope also tells us the order of the text; if you order the scope ABCD, then your body text AND summary should all follow the same order.

Body Text
The body text should have at least three paragraphs for a short essay. For a long essay, it could have several more (see below).

Staging Devices- Announcing Logical Relationships


There is a whole section of the textbook about this but basically this includes the idea of simple and complex staging devices.

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furthermore, on the other hand. They could also be more complex, for example the second paragraph of the body text for the scope above could be: While human disinterest is a major contributor to pollution, greed in the form of (B) the personalization of transport has probably caused even more damage.

A Topic Sentence
The topic sentence introduces the main idea of the paragraph and how it will be approached. While human disinterest is a major contributor to pollution, greed in the form of (B) the privatisation of transport has probably caused even more damage. In the above example, the topic is the privatisation of transport.

Elaboration
The elaboration is where the detailed argument is developed. It uses examples, reasoning, research and evidence. The use of private transport is fundamentally synonymous with the idea of one person per vehicle (Smith 1994, 276). More than 80% of all private transport is composed of a sedan car carrying one person to and from work (Jones 2001, 34). As a result this mode of transport is extremely inefficient and contributes a large proportion of urban pollution. According to Jones, removing this form of transport would reduce urban pollution by as much as 70% (2001, 43). Thus, it is clearly evident that limiting or banning personal transport would make a major contribution to solving the pollution problem.

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Each fact in the elaboration should be supported by a reference or the development of your argument. This is where we get to understand why you think something and how it works in detail.

Closure
This is a concluding sentence that sums up the work of the paragraph. Thus it is clearly evident that limiting or banning personal transport would make a major contribution to solving the pollution problem. It takes the reader back to what you were trying to explain or prove and allows them to clearly understand what you have done.

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Frequently Asked Questions


How many paragraphs should I have in my body text? For a short essay, you should have one paragraph for each point in your scope: as a rule of thumb, from a minimum of three to a maximum of four. For a long essay, you might have six to ten paragraphs in your body text and yet only three to four points in your scope. This is because you can elaborate an idea through more than one paragraph. This is done by dividing the idea into subsections and announcing that it is part of the same concept, for example, Topic sentence, body paragraph two (B) While human disinterest is a major contributor to pollution, greed in the form of (B) the personalization of transport has probably caused even more damage. Topic sentence, body paragraph three (B) Another aspect of the personalization of transport that has caused considerable damage is the effect of the built infrastructure. This is seen in the many millions of square miles of roads that network across the planet, covering native habitat, rendering hundreds of species extinct and increasing land prices in the urban areas, thus forcing the extension of settlement and even further environmental destruction. What is the best order for my ideas? In general, in academic writing, it is best to keep the most important aspect and the strongest argument till the end of the body text.

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This way your presentation will get stronger as it reaches the end and leaves the reader with a strong impression of your most important point. How many points should I have in my body text? For a short essay, in an exam or for homework, the minimum is three and the maximum four. Beyond that it is just too messy. Even for a long essay, limiting the areas of consideration to four key areas is not a bad idea. How come people with good English write bad essays? Essay writing for university isnt just about being able to write in English, rather it is about being able to express ideas logically and within a clear structure. So the absence of logic and structure can lead to quite bad results. Is grammar important? Yes it is because grammar is the key to clear expression. However, if the essay can be understood and the errors are quite minor, it is still possible to get a good result. Is spelling important? Again, spelling is essential to clear expression but if the errors are minor and the message is still clear, then minor mistakes will not get in the way of a good result. Is structure important? Structure is very important; in most assessment writing and speaking tasks it can affect your grade by as much as 30%.
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It is also important because managing structure indicates your ability to organize information and present your ideas in a logical manner. This is essential to your future success at university. Do I need to use big words? Academic English means using language that is clear and concise. That often means that the words are longer and their meanings are more complex. However, using a simple expression for a simple idea is perfectly acceptable, so long as it is not colloquial (spoken style) language. Do I need to write long sentences? In a word, No! While you will see some very long sentences in academic literature, you are not expected to do that. If you can make long sentences that are easy to understand, thats fine. The problem is that many people think that just throwing together a bunch of big words will be good enough. It isnt. When in doubt always write as clearly as you can. If that means your sentences are shorter, it doesnt matter so long as the meaning is clear.

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How big should a paragraph be? There is no clear answer to this question. In simple terms it might look like this, for example Topic sentence Elaboration Reference Explanation of reference Closure Thats five sentences for your basic paragraph. Just keep in mind that if you feel the idea is being lost, you can divide a topic area into more than one paragraph and link them with a staging device that clearly tells the reader that it is the same topic.

Copyright Reno Dal Created on 15/01/04 11:16 PM

RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format

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Review Questions- True or False


1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Your introduction can be two paragraphs. The background statement argues one side. The position statement says how you will argue. The statement of issue tells the subject history. The background statement tells the importance and history of the subject in an explanation essay. 6. An argument essay aims to prove one side of an argument. 7. A discussion essay tries to present both sides of an argument, with a resolution at the end (judgement). 8. You should always use a dictionary when developing your ideas for your definition. 9. Your definition should only come from a dictionary. T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F T/F

10. This definition is circular: For the purpose of this essay, crime will be defined as a kind of crime that is detected by the police. 11. You can use the future tense (will) for your definition. 12. Your scope can be several sentences. 13. You cannot use the future tense (will) for your scope. 14. The scope does not tell us the order of the ideas in the body of the essay. 15. A topic sentence tells the reader the main idea of the paragraph in general terms. 16. The relationship between the scope and the topic sentence is not important.
Copyright Reno Dal Created on 15/01/04 11:16 PM

T/F T/F T/F T/F

T/F

T/F

T/F

RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format 17. Elaboration is where you present your facts, references and the logic of your argument. 18. I should use my strongest argument first, before I forget what it is. 19. Structure is very important in an academic essay. 20. I must use big words and long sentences in my essay, even if they are meaningless nonsense that even I dont understand. 21. It is always better to be clear and concise, rather than just throwing words together carelessly. 22. Teachers will give me more marks for big words.

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T/F

T/F T/F

T/F

T/F T/F

Copyright Reno Dal Created on 15/01/04 11:16 PM

RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format

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Review Answers- True or False


1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Your introduction can be two paragraphs. The background statement argues one side. The position statement says how you will argue. The statement of issue tells the subject history. The background statement tells the importance and history of the subject in an explanation essay. 6. An argument essay aims to prove one side of an argument. 7. A discussion essay tries to present both sides of an argument, with a resolution at the end (judgement). 8. You should always use a dictionary when developing your ideas for your definition. 9. Your definition should only come from a dictionary. T F T T T F F T F

10. This definition is circular: For the purpose of this essay, crime will be defined as a kind of crime that is detected by the police. 11. You can use the future tense (will) for your definition. 12. Your scope can be several sentences. 13. You cannot use the future tense (will) for your scope. 14. The scope does not tell us the order of the ideas in the body of the essay. 15. A topic sentence tells the reader the main idea of the paragraph in general terms. 16. The relationship between the scope and the topic sentence is not important.
Copyright Reno Dal Created on 15/01/04 11:16 PM

T T T F

RWR #0: Understanding the Essay Format 17. Elaboration is where you present your facts, references and the logic of your argument. 18. I should use my strongest argument first, before I forget what it is. 19. Structure is very important in an academic essay. 20. I must use big words and long sentences in my essay, even if they are meaningless nonsense that even I dont understand. 21. It is always better to be clear and concise, rather than just throwing words together carelessly. 22. Teachers will give me more marks for big words.

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F T

T F

Copyright Reno Dal Created on 15/01/04 11:16 PM

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