Essay Writing Skills/Activities

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Writing writing writing

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Useful Writing Websites

  • University of Otago and Otago Polytechnic resource - Essay writing with readings - A homegrown (Dunedin) and fun online essay writing module. A great place to start.
  • Skillwise Website Activities and tips on paragraphs, planning, proofreading, format and structure

Specific skills

  1. Understanding the essay topic (analysing the question)
  2. Brainstorming and planning the essay
  3. Knowing about types of information for your essay
  4. Gathering and using information in your essay
  5. Develop essay content: Writing the essay
  6. Construct the essay: Structure of the academic essay
  7. Paraphrasing, Summarising and Quoting
  8. Grammar and writing style
  9. Proofreading the essay

Essay Writing Resources

Go to the library of resources for Essay Writing Skills and read the resources on .......

  • The essay structure
    • Introductions
    • Paragraphs
    • Conclusions

Practice example

Write an essay on the following topic: Developing study skills means that you need to become truly active in your learning'. Describe what is meant by the term 'active learning' and examine the relationship between active learning and successful study. Illustrate your response with examples from your own experience as a student.

You must refer to and correctly acknowledge the work of at least three writers in your essay. You may use no more than one Internet article; any other references must come from articles or books accessed through the library or from databases.

Recommended reading for this essay topic:

  • Buzan, T. (2006). Buzan study skills : the shortcut to success in your studies. Harlow:BBC Active.
  • Coster, N. (1987). Success with Study. Christchurch: Coster Publications.
  • Cottrell, S. (2003). Skills for success: the personal development planning handbook. Basingstoke: Balgrave Macmillan.
  • Fleming, N. (2001). Teaching and learning styles: VARK strategies. Christchurch,N.Z.: N.D. Fleming.
  • Gawith, G. (1991). Power learning: a student's guide to success. Lower Hutt: Mills Publications.
  • Grey, D. (2006). Getting the buggers to learn. London: Continuum.
  • James & Brooks. (1996). Study skills guide. Porirua: Whitireia Publishing.
  • Marshall & Rowland. (1998). A guide to learning independently. Melbourne:Longman.
  • Northedge, A.(1990). The good study guide. Milton Keynes: Open University.
  • O'Hara, S. (2005). Improving your study skills. Hoboken, NJ : Wiley.
  • Ward & Daley. (1994). Learning to learn. Christchurch: Ward & Daley.
  • Walmsley, B. (2006). Teach yourself good study skills. London: Teach Yourself.

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