2013 academic english slideshare version

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A brief overview of key elements of Academic English, Style and Paragraph Structure

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2013 academic english slideshare version

  1. 1. ACADEMIC ENGLISH Martin McMorrowLearning Advisor, Centre for Teaching and Learning
  2. 2. Part 1 CTL Services Academic Style Citations and References Academic VocabularyPart 2 Using sources Structuring paragraphs Grammar mistakes to avoid
  3. 3. CENTRE FOR TEACHING ANDLEARNING SERVICES Selected online resourceshttp://tinyurl.com/6xy9hy Academic English podcasthttp://tinyurl.com/ctlvideos Video Presentationshttp://owll.massey.ac.nz online writing and learning link
  4. 4. ACADEMIC STYLE Ordinary EnglishAgeism is when someone is treated badly just because they’reyoung or old and it’s a lot more common than people think. Whatmatters most isn’t whether or not someone’s treated differentlybut whether it’s unfair to treat them differently in thecircumstances. You couldn’t call a bar ageist if they didn’t take on a16 year-old for the job because they’re not allowed to have ateenager working for them. But it’s obvious that a bar thatwouldn’t give a job to a 50 year old to serve drinks is being ageist ifthat person was good enough in every way except for the fact thathe or she was older. This sort of thing is incredibly common, evenin New Zealand.
  5. 5. Academic EnglishAgeism may be defined as “unfair discrimination towards someoneon account of their age” (Smith & Davidov, 2003, p. 104). Thecrucial aspect is not discrimination in itself, but its unfairness. Itcould not be claimed that a bar was being ageist for refusing toemploy a 16 year-old, since they are legally prohibited from doingso. However, a bar which refused to employ a 50 year old to servedrinks could be considered ageist, if that person fulfilled theemployment specifications in every other respect. Recent researchhas found evidence of such practices, where age is used as anunjustified barrier to employment or promotion, in over half ofNew Zealand employers (Brown, 2012).
  6. 6. Academic English is:preciseAgeism happens when …. Ageism may be defined as ….concisewhen someone is treated badly unfair discriminationobjectiveyou could hardly say that … It could not be claimed that …evidence-basedThis sort of thing is incredibly Recent research has found …common, even in New Zealand. (Brown, 2012).
  7. 7. CITATIONS AND REFERENCES Citations are a short way of indicating the source of your theories, models, concepts, examples or facts In APA style, all you need to do is to put the author and date of publication of the book, article or website you used The most common way to do this is to put these in brackets AFTER you’ve used the information Recent research has found evidence of such practices, where age is used as an unjustified barrier to employment or promotion, in over half of New Zealand employers (Brown, 2012).
  8. 8. As an alternative you can use ‘according to’ andinclude the author(s) in your sentence According to Brown (2012), older employees provide three main benefits for organisations. The first of these is ….Or make the author(s) the subject of your sentence,choosing an appropriate reporting verb, for example: claim argue explain suggest point out find / found Brown (2012) found that age is used as an unjustified barrier to employment or promotion in over half of New Zealand employers.
  9. 9. Your citations need to match up with complete references to sources in a list at the endReferencesBrown, P. (2012). Equal opportunities in New Zealand: Myth or reality? Australasian Journal of Human Resources, 41(3), 46-68.Davidson, C., & Tolich, M. (2001). Social science research in New Zealand. Auckland, New Zealand: Pearson Education.Khan, I., & Chen, T. (2010). Tackling ageism: A cross-institutional approach. In J. Johnson & T. Peterson (Eds.), An equal opportunities handbook (pp. 102-131). San Francisco, CA: Pilot Press.Atkinson, D. (2013, January 24). Too old to work: Too young to die? Retrieved from http://www.nzherald.co.nz/1004532.htmSmith, P., & Davidoff, R. (2003). Equal opportunities: From policy to practice. Central Islip, NY: Progressive Press.Statistics New Zealand. (2008). Demographic Trends – 2001-2006. Retrieved from http://stats.govt.nz/demotrends-2012.pdf
  10. 10. In academic writing, most references are tobooks and journal articles surname, (year) title of book initialSmith, P., & Davidoff, R. (2003). Equal opportunities: From policy to practice. Central Islip, NY: Progressive Press. city publisher surname, (year) title of article initialBrown, P. (2012). Equal opportunities in New Zealand: Myth or reality? Australasian Journal of Human Resources, 41(3), 46-68. name of journal volume / issue number page numbers
  11. 11. ACADEMIC ENGLISH VOCABULARY1) It’s difficult to define the con_ _ _ _ of beauty. concept2) The internet gives you instant acc_ _ _ to information. access3) Evolution explains how simple animals developed into morecom_ _ _ _ ones over a long period of time. complex4) Come to the meeting if you feel you have anythingto con_ _ _ _ _ _ _ to the discussion. contribute5) We are not really in competition with them, but thereare a few ove_ _ _ _ _ between our products. overlaps
  12. 12. draft6) She asked me to check the first dra_ _ of her presentation.7) The final cost of the project should not exc_ _ _ exceed $10 000.8) It’s impossible to eli_ _ _ _ _ _ crime completely, but this government eliminateaims to reduce it substantially.9) Financial experts have det_ _ _ _ _ some signs that the economy detectedmay be improving.10) No agreement has been reached but negotiations are still ong_ _ _ _. ongoing
  13. 13. 11) One reason that increasing numbers of goods are manufactured in South-East Asianis the lower lab_ _ _ costs there. labour infer12) We have to inf_ _ from his silence on the matter that he has comment to make. survey13) A recent sur_ _ _ found that more than 60 % of workers weredissatisfied with their managers.14) We had to make several calls to the tec_ _ _ _ _ _ support line before technicalanyone came to repair out computer.15) We all ass_ _ _ _ _ _ in the meeting room to hear the takeover news. assembled
  14. 14. 16) The company publishes its ann_ _ _ annual accounts every September.17) At the moment we don’t ant_ _ _ _ _ _ _ any problems with the new system. anticipate18) The internet has become an important med_ _ _ medium of communication for companies. crucial19) Her work has been a cru_ _ _ _ part of the company’s success.20) Unemployment will be one of the most important issues _ in the next election. iss_ _
  15. 15. SOME MORE ADVANCED ACADEMIC VOCABULARY (featured in theAcademic English Podcast)The mattress contains over 50 internal supports to providerigi _ _ _ _, while the luxurious foam filling provides comfort.rigidityThe President used the full range of her rhet _ _ _ _ _ _ skills to rhetoricalpersuade reluctant senators to back her economic recovery planGiven the uncertain financial situation in Europe, this may not be anausp _ _ _ _ _ _ time to be opening a new retail business there auspiciousHaving grown up during a period of aust _ _ _ _ _, in later years austerityhe found it hard to tolerate any waste.As criminals become more resourceful, knowledgeable ordesperate, security firms and the police need increasinglyinge _ _ _ _ _ means of preventing and detecting crime. ingenious
  16. 16. Strategies for dealing with unfamiliar vocabulary in your academic reading high Look it up, file it in your system with an example sentence. Review it at the end of the day and week look it up to confirm and move on futurerelevance work out meaning and move on ignore low
  17. 17. An application of this strategy to vocabularyfrom Chapter 1 of a Business Law book. presumption Important concepts for disseminate this subject (business law) flora and fauna disclose validity Important concepts for derived all academic research, nomenclature analysis, argument etc solecisms arbitrary adherents
  18. 18. Practice in working out meaning of unfamiliarvocabulary“adequate research of overseas markets is … one of several prerequisites for international marketing success” things that will make a profit things that must be done things that will surprise you
  19. 19. “If you watch a Yoplait advertisement that shows other people enjoying a new yoghurt flavour, you might conclude that you would like it too. For services, such vicarious learning is essential, as consumers can rarely assess the benefit directly and have to rely on the experience of others…” enjoyable second-hand conclusive
  20. 20. SUMMARY OF PART 1 • Aim to develop a precise, concise, objective and evidence-based writing style • Use Massey resources and workshops to get your referencing right • Review and practice your basic academic vocabulary • Work out meaning of new vocabulary from context whenever possible • Ignore new vocabulary that is not important in your subject
  21. 21. PART 2 • Using sources • Structuring paragraphs • Evaluating paragraphs • Grammar mistakes to avoid
  22. 22. USING SOURCESQuotations 1) Only quote definitions: The concept of comparative advantage states that “everyone does best when each concentrates on the activity for which he or she is relatively most productive” (Frank & Bernanke, 2001, p. 23). 2) ..... or really memorable phrases: As Mundell (2002, p. 4) argued, “If it’s right for Europe to scrap its national currencies, why is it wrong for other countries to do the same thing?” And, as in the above examples, copy as few words as possible and put these inside “ “ after your own introductory phrase.
  23. 23. Complete the following sentence, using the sourcebelow, including the correct punctuation and citation. Corporate governance refers to ________ Such is the realm of corporate governance, an area that deals with how a company conducts its business and implements controls to ensure proper procedures and ethical behaviour. (from page 18 of a book entitled “Financial Management: Core concepts”, written by Raymond Brooks and published in 2010, by Pearson – a publisher based in Boston in the American state of Massachusetts) Corporate governance refers to “how a company conducts its business and implements controls to ensure proper procedures and ethical behaviour” (Brooks, 2010, p. 18).
  24. 24. Summarising 90% of your use of sources will be in the form of summaries of ideas in your own words. To do this effectively, you need to: a) highlight the relevant information b) turn this into brief notes c) close the original text d) expand your notes into one or more linked sentencesHow could you summarise in ONE sentence the key ideas fromthis text (from an article by Chen & Lee, 2008) for a paragraph onConfucian ideas about leadership?“A person who wishes to follow Confucian moral philosophy will have the goal ofbecoming a junzi. The term junzi literally means the ‘‘son of the ruler’’ and hasbeen translated into English as a ‘‘person of virtue,’’ a gentleman, a ‘‘superiorman’’ or a ‘‘princely man.’’ The term appears 107 times in the Analects (Wang,2000). According to Anh (2008, p. 103) a junzi is a ‘‘noble person who attemptsto actualize Confucian cardinal virtues in concrete human relationships at anycost.’’ The junzi is a person who is an involved agent with others, rather thansomeone who is a detached intellectual or ivory tower philosopher (Wang,2000). Business leaders still nominate the ideal of being a junzi as thestandard of personal integrity in China today”.
  25. 25. STEP 1: Highlight relevant information“A person who wishes to follow Confucian moral philosophy will have the goal ofbecoming a junzi. The term junzi literally means the ‘‘son of the ruler’’ and hasbeen translated into English as a ‘‘person of virtue,’’ a gentleman, a ‘‘superiorman’’ or a ‘‘princely man.’’ The term appears 107 times in the Analects (Wang,2000). According to Anh (2008, p. 103) a junzi is a ‘‘noble person who attemptsto actualize Confucian cardinal virtues in concrete human relationships at anycost.’’ The junzi is a person who is an involved agent with others, rather thansomeone who is a detached intellectual or ivory tower philosopher (Wang,2000). Business leaders still nominate the ideal of being a junzi as the standardof personal integrity in China today” (Chen and Lee, 2008).STEP 2: Take the information out and put into brief notesConfucian goal is to become a junzi – a person of outstanding practical moral standardBusiness leaders in China see junzi as an ideal (Chen & Lee , 2008).
  26. 26. STEP 3: Close the original book or screen – so all youhave in front of you is your notesConfucian goal is to become a junzi – a person of outstanding moral standards, whichthey use in social relationshipsBusiness leaders in China see junzi as an ideal (Chen & Lee , 2008).STEP 4: Expand your notes into one or more linked sentencesResearch has shown that modern Chinese business leaders continue to aspire towardsthe Confucian ideal of the junzi, or someone recognised as having outstanding practicalvirtues and social skills (Chen & Lee , 2008).If you follow these FOUR steps • You won’t need to worry about plagiarism • You’ll write more critically • Your writing will flow much better • You’ll be more credible
  27. 27. STRUCTURING PARAGRAPHSSample Assignment QuestionDiscrimination in the workplace has two victims: inthe short term, those discriminated against suffer;but in the longer term, organisations themselvessuffer from their own discriminatory practices.Discuss in relation to the New Zealand businessenvironment.
  28. 28. Although, as we have seen, sexism and racism continue to exist inNew Zealand organisations, there is a clear legal framework foridentifying and dealing with both practices. This is not the casewith ageism, which can be defined as “unfair discrimination on thebasis of age” (Smith & Davidov, 2003, p. 23). Because its legalstatus is less clearly marked, ageism may be even more serious,since organisations may not recognise it as a problem. One reasonfor this lack of recognition is that there can be reasons to take ageinto account in recruitment. For instance, it could not be claimedthat a bar was being ageist because they refused to employ a 16year-old. Discrimination it may be, but it is not unfair.
  29. 29. On the other hand, a bar which refused to employ a well-qualified 46 year-old to serve drinks clearly has an ageist policy,even if they try to justify this policy as what their customers andother staff expect. Such discrimination appears to be common inNew Zealand (Morrison, 2000, p. 18), which indicates a failure torespond to the changing demographics of our society (ExecutiveTaskforce Group, 2004). Its negative impacts on organisationsare likely to worsen over the coming decades in which olderworkers will be our main talent pool (Statistics New Zealand,2006, ch. 8). Therefore, ageist policies may indicate that anorganisational culture is not ready for the challenges andopportunities that lie ahead.
  30. 30. A WELL-STRUCTURED PARAGRAPH• Starts by referring back to main topic of previous paragraph(s)• Focuses on the essay question• Makes ONE clear basic point• Supports this point with argument, references to research & examples• Is made up of sentences which refer back to earlier sentences• Comes to a conclusion
  31. 31. Start paragraphs by referring back to the main point you’ve made in the paragraph before Although, as we have seen, sexism and racism continue to be prevalent in New Zealand organisations, there is a clear legal framework for identifying and dealing with both practices. This is not the case with ageism Make sure you use the key topic words to keep your writing relevantAlthough, as we have seen, sexism and racism continue to exist in New Zealand organisations, there is a clear legal framework foridentifying and dealing with both practices. This is not the case with ageism, which can be defined as “unfair discrimination onthe basis of age” (Smith & Davidov, 2003, p. 23). Because its legal status is less clearly marked, ageism may be even more common,since organisations may not recognise it as a problem. One obvious reason for this lack of recognition is that there may be reasons totake age into account in recruitment. For instance, it could not be claimed that a bar was being ageist because they refused toemploy a 16 year-old. Discrimination it may be, but it is not unfair. On the other hand, a bar which refused to employ a well-qualified 46 year-old to serve drinks clearly has an ageist policy, even if they try to justify this policy as what their customers and otherstaff expect. Such discrimination appears to be common in New Zealand (Morrison, 2000, p. 18) which indicates a failure torespond to the changing demographics of our society (Executive Taskforce Group, 2004). Its negative impacts on organisations are likelyto worsen over the coming decades in which older workers will be our main talent pool (Statistics New Zealand, 2006, ch. 8). Therefore,ageist policies may indicate that an organisational culture is not ready for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
  32. 32. Make the main point of your paragraph clearlyin a topic sentence at or near the beginningBecause its legal status is less clearly marked, ageism is potentiallyeven more serious, since organisations may not recognise it as aproblem. Include references to one or more books, academic journal articles and high quality websites to provide evidence for the facts, examples and concepts you includeSuch discrimination appears to be common in New Zealand (Morrison, 2000, p. 18), whichindicates a failure to respond to the changing demographics of our society (ExecutiveTaskforce Group, 2004). Its negative impacts on organisations are likely to worsen over thecoming decades in which older workers will be our main talent pool (Statistics NewZealand, 2006, ch. 8). Therefore, ageist policies may indicate that an organisational cultureis not ready for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
  33. 33. To make your writing flow, start each newsentence by referring BACK to an earlier idea__________. This is not the case with ageism _______. Because its legal status is less clearly marked,_____ organisations may not recognise it as a problem. One obvious reason for this lack ofrecognition is _____ . For instance, _______. Such discrimination _________Aim to conclude your paragraphs with an evaluation of thetopic you’ve discussedTherefore, ageist policies may indicate that an organisational culture is not readyfor the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
  34. 34. EVALUATING PARAGRAPHS BAND 1: The paragraph develops a coherent and convincing argument. It is well-structured, with an opening, a set of three or more linked sentences, and a concluding comment. Most sentences are correct, with no basic grammar or vocabulary errors. There is evidence of a reasonable range of sentence types and some non-basic vocabulary. Currently, a large number of students chose to study aboard. New Zealand is one of the popular countries. There are 3 main reasons that international students go to study in New Zealand. First of all, New Zealand is quite a safe country as there is not much serious crime. And for parents, children’s safety is the most important. Secondly, there are a lot of beautiful scenery in NZ such as Long Bay Regional Park and Mission Bay. Good enviorment contributes to motivate students to study. The last but not least is the quality of education in NZ. All students are looking forward to having a good job or something else. So NZ is such a great choice!
  35. 35. BAND 2: The paragraph communicates an adequate, thoughrather simple, argument. It has a simple structure, with basicconnections between sentences (and, but, firstly, secondly). Atleast half of the sentences are correct – i.e. without basicgrammar or vocabulary errors. The range of sentence types andvocabulary is limited with only one or two examples of non-basicvocabulary or syntax. There are many reasons for students study at universities in NZ, but I think there are three main resons, firstly we can learn about the world, it is a good way for us to expand our knowledge. Secondly, study at universities in NZ is not too expensive. Last but not least, NZ is a safer place in the world, because there is not much serious crime. All in all, NZ is a good place for studying.
  36. 36. BAND 3: The paragraph as a whole does not communicate aconvincing argument at tertiary level. At points it is hard tofollow. It has a simple structure and connections betweensentences are rather awkward and/or inconsistent. Mostsentences contain at least one basic grammar or vocabularyerror. The range of sentence types and vocabulary is limited tobasic forms. Living in New Zealand is very safety. There are not much serious crime, at the same time students can work hard on their relevant course without worry. When we come New Zealand, we must become more independence. There is nobody take care of us. Studying is the significant. To improve our English and study hard, make sure we will graduate from university.
  37. 37. BAND 4: The paragraph does not communicate a convincingargument as a whole, or at the level of individual sentences,which are mostly unclear. The overall structure is minimaland/or not coherent. Most sentences contain more than onebasic grammar or vocabulary error. The range of vocabularyand sentence types is limited to basic forms. Gerenally speaking, an oversea student would become more independent than the student who study in home country. Student need to find homestay or do the others. This can improved a student confident. Moreover, the company realised that the international students would more effect or improved the company. They need some new ideas from other countries. This is why we need to study overseas.
  38. 38. TOP TEN GRAMMAR MISTAKES 10) Spelling and Punctuation • english • a students life • studing • reknowned • future carrier • people are quiet friendly
  39. 39. 9) Grammar of comparison• the environment is more clean ..• NZ is not that expensive than ...• fees are quite cheaper than ..8) Wrong tense or verb form• My parents send me to New Zealand ...• I choose to study in NZ ..
  40. 40. 7) Wrong words• New Zealand has very beautiful views• nations which are upcoming with ideas• a low number of crime6) Wrong collocation• Among the vital reasons• the fees are cheaper
  41. 41. 5) Wrong or unnecessary preposition• The reason of coming to New Zealand was for improve my English• included at the top 200 universities• I would like to discuss about why …• contact to students from Europe• important in these days• both of environment and social background• an interesting opportunity to me• In my point of view ..• I’ve been dreaming for it
  42. 42. 4) Wrong form of word (adjective instead of noun etc)• New Zealand is inexpensive comparing to• a political neutral place3) missing ‘a’ and ‘the’• New Zealand is very safe country• an important step for future• environment is beautiful• NZ universities have good reputation
  43. 43. 2) agreement – especially where the noun doesn’t agree with verb• Research have shown …• NZ universities offers1) singular instead of plural• parent are reassured that their child are ...• one of the major reason is ..• many beautiful place ..
  44. 44. GRAMMAR TIP 1: AVOID OVER COMPLEX SENTENCESSimple sentences – comprising a single clause (SUBJECT &VERB) – are good ways to introduce a new topic withoutgoing into detail – UNLIKE THIS ONE! In the 1960s when little study was devoted to facial expression, like most social scientists of her day, Mead believed expression was culturally determined, we simply use our face according to a set of learned social conventions, the belief grew from the emphasis on motivation and cognition in academic psychology that flourished at the time.
  45. 45. The same information is much clearer if it’s brokendown into shorter sentences – and each sentencestarts by referring back to the one before In the 1960s, little study was devoted to facial expression. Like most social scientists of her day, Mead believed facial expression was culturally determined. In other words, she believed we simply use our face according to a set of learned social conventions. This belief grew from the emphasis on motivation and cognition in academic psychology that flourished at the time (Blackworth, 2006).
  46. 46. GRAMMAR TIP 2: TAKE CARE WITH SINGULAR / PLURAL IN ____ OF_____ PHRASES• The cost of residential houses has increased by 40% in the last two years. This dramatic rise in prices has forced many young people into the rental market.• In 1999 the two countries resumed diplomatic talks. This improvement in the relationship between the two countries has facilitated the re- opening of trade links.
  47. 47. GRAMMAR TIP 3: ‘THE’ IS NEEDED 140 TIMES IN A 2000 WORDESSAYWhen you’ve mentioned something previously: At the meeting a student spoke about problems in finding housing. The student emphasised…When the word is qualified by specific information: Example 1: Qualified by a phrase: The principles of Scientific Management ... Example 2: Qualified by another noun: …. a major strength of the New Zealand economy. Example 3: Qualified by a relative clause: The enquiry that began in 2001…

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