How to avoid writing in first person

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How to avoid writing in first person

  1. 1. Dr. Andree C. SwansonCopyright @ 2011 - 2013
  2. 2. Its not easy, however, when you try to find your academic voice, you willtake you out of the picture.Here are some websites that willhelp you with this: Point of View and Voice http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/15/ How to Avoid Writing in First Person http://elearning.homestead.com/first_person_writing.htm
  3. 3. “It is important to note thatwhile the avoidance of "I"has long been part of theacademic tradition, thesedays some academicsconsider its use to beacceptable. So, you mayencounter different viewsabout the use of "I" over thecourse of your degree.”(Monash University, 2007)
  4. 4.  One way is to let theassignment "speak for itself“: For example… "Idemonstrated a lack ofunderstanding on the topicof proper academicwriting." Could be written as… “A lack of understandingon the topic created anerror in thepresentation.” For example… “I interpreted the resultsto mean a = b” Could be written as… “Swanson and Crites(2011) stated that a = b.”Note:Use the authors’ names whenyou are discussing a study orresearch that was conducted bysomeone else.(Monash University, 2007)
  5. 5. Instead of Write"We administered thequestionnaire..."(active voice)"The questionnaire wasadministered..."(passive voice)"I surveyed the literature"(active voice)"The literature was surveyed"(passive voice)"I took a sample..."(active voice)"A sample was taken"(passive voice)Yes… you should avoid passive voice most of the time, however, sometimes,especially when avoiding writing in first person, it is acceptable.Another way to avoid the first person is to use the passivevoice construction:(Monash University, 2007)
  6. 6.  Bowman, L. (2003). How to avoid writing infirst person. Retrieved fromhttp://elearning.homestead.com/first_person_writing.htm Monash University. (2007). Avoiding thepersonal pronoun “I”. Retrieved fromhttp://www.monash.edu.au/lls/llonline/writing/arts/sociology/2.3.1.xml Purdue University. (1995-2011). Point of viewand voice. Retrieved fromhttp://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/15/

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