Academic Phrases to Use in Your Essays
What is academic writing?
Okay so, academic writing - oof, this ones a biggie. No matter what you end up doing as an adult or which school you attend, chances are you have probably taken some academic writing course or, at the very least, have had to learn academic writing skills. If you want to improve your essays, let’s take a look at what academic writing is.
|Academic Writing||A formal writing style||Critical essay, persuasive essay, descriptive essay, etc.||Essay, research paper, report, dissertation, etc.|
In modern terms, the academic writing style is better known as an essay. While you may think that the essay dates back to the early stages of human writing, the essay is actually a relatively modern writing technique. The work below is widely considered to be the first essay.
|Essais||Michel de Montaigne||1580||The French word ‘essais’ means attempts - or tries.|
When Montaigne wrote this new style, it was starkly different from the rigidly structured essay we think of today. Montaigne wrote freely about topics, often citing ancient Greek and Latin texts for support. So, what exactly is academic writing today? While there are many different types of essays today, there are 4 main categories you are likely to encounter today.
|Argumentative||States a thesis and builds up evidence for this thesis. This is the most common essay type you’ll encounter and the one most often written.|
|Critical||Evaluates a text by analysing it, rather than trying to make an argument, it tries to understand the meaning of the text (be it a movie, book, etc.)|
|Expository||Gives an explanation of a specific topic without trying to prove a point, but rather to give an objective view of the matter.|
|Persuasive||Presents a point to the reader and tries to persuade the reader towards believing that point.|
How can I make my essay sound better?
If you’re interested in academic writing help, look no further. In this section, we’ll go through the most basic building block of essay writing: words. In order to make your essay sound better, you’ll need to employ some common academic phrases for essay writing.
|Formal tone||Usually, casual language you use in everyday conversation is emitted from essays. (Although this is up to the discretion of the writer and their subject)|
|Specific language||A diverse and precise vocabulary can be used to better convey your points.|
|Sources||Sources should be cited following commonly used citation frameworks.|
|Point of view||Usually, essays are written from the third person. However, this also depends on the subject and author.|
If you make sure to at least have the basics listed above, your essay will already sound a lot better. So, what are some common academic writing phrases or words?
|Explaining points||In order to, in other words, central to the text is, etc.|
|Supporting an argument||Moreover, furthermore, another key aspect, coupled with this fact, etc.|
|Contrasting||On the other hand, examining this in another light, considering this from another angle, etc.|
What are introductory phrases examples?
If you’re wondering: how many words should an introduction be, what words should I use in an introduction - here are some academic writing tips dealing with introductions. There are two types of introductions you’ll need in academic writing, explained in the table below.
|Introduction of Essay||When you’re starting an essay, no matter what type of essay you’re writing, you should always have an introduction.|
|Introduction of Ideas||In academic writing, you will be writing about various different ideas, resources, themes and more. You will need to introduce these elements to your audience.|
If you’re wondering what introductory phrases you should use, you should think about what type of introduction you’re doing. Let’s take a look at some examples of either of the two types of introducing.
|Argumentative essay||Intro to an essay||Policies aimed at reducing the harm that smoking causes should also, therefore, focus on reducing the second-hand smoke breathed in by non-smokers.|
|Citing a movie||Intro of an idea||Directed by Craig Gillespie, the film I, Tonya recounts the events surrounding the 1994 attack on Nancy Kerrigan.|
|An idea||Intro of an idea||In visual art, the fourth wall is the idea that there is a fictitious wall separating the story from real life.|
What are some good linking words?
If you’re in need of some academic writing examples dealing with linking words, you’re in the right place! Linking words are vital in academic writing, however what exactly are they? Let’s define linking words. Linking words are words that connect two ideas together. It’s as simple as that! However, there are different linking words that you can use depending on what kind of ideas you’re trying to link together. There are four main categories where linking words can be used. Let’s take a look at these.
|Support||When you want to support an idea using another one.||Additionally, the driver did not express sadness.|
|Contrast||When you want to contrast two ideas.||In contrast, we do see sadness from the passenger.|
|Emphasis||When you want to emphasize an idea with another idea.||Clearly, the passenger is more affected by the exchange.|
|Sequence||When you want to order a sequence of ideas.||Subsequently, the audience knows these effects will last a lifetime.|
Here are some more examples of linking words you can use with these categories:
What words are not used in academic writing?
There are many different words you should avoid when writing academic papers. When it comes to phrases and words to avoid, you will get many differing opinions from teachers and academic writing services alike. However, here are some general words and phrases to avoid.
- Passive verbs
Take a look at the following image for an example of each of the above.
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What can I write instead of "this makes the reader..."?
How to avoid always writing " this makes the reader" all the time
This is a phrase that all too often slips out without much thought and it is one that teachers are sick of seeing in essays. The reason for that is writing "this makes the reader..." makes it look like you haven't put much thought into your writing and shows a lack of analysis of the text. Here are some better phrases to use instead of "makes the reader":
- This invokes feelings of X in the reader.
- This brings about the emotion of…. in the reader.
- This further elucidates (disconsolate, sad, melancholic) emotions to the reader
- This connotes a sense of (melancholy, sorrowful) feelings for the reader
- This results in the reader experiencing…
- This creates a sad, joyful, frightening... atmosphere
- This moves the reader
- This provokes the reader to believe/think/feel…
- The reader is compelled
- The reader is therefore made to feel sad, happy, stressed, anxious...
- This entices the reader
- This causes a sense of sadness, joy, bewilderment... in the reader etc…
- The writer is trying to infer that…
- The reader deduces from this that…
- The use of the (metaphor/repetition/syntax etc.) demonstrates/ establishes/ highlights/ reinforces that…
It is also a good idea to consider the various interpretations of different readers, as they will differ depending on their social and historical context. As such, you could say: A female reader in the 19th Century may respond to this by feeling…
How can you describe a fairground?
What would you describe a fun fair?
At this point you may be wondering, how in the world will I come up with a description of a funfair? Descriptive writing can be difficult, whether you’re doing it for a hobby or for a class assignment. The best way to start getting those creative juices flowing is to identify the purpose of your writing.
|Creative writing||If you’re in a creative writing class, want to write a novel, want to write a play, etc.|
|Promotion||If you’re promoting a carnival on social media, on a brochure, for private parties, etc.|
|Professional||If you want to organize, collaborate or take part in a fun fair.|
You will most likely be writing a description of a fair ground for creative writing purposes, so let’s start with some descriptive writing examples for creative writing. Take a look at some of the qualities you should describe.
|Characters||Decide who your characters will be and what their occupation is: father, fair worker, student, etc.|
|Time of day||What time of day will your scenes take place? Will this change the mood or the action of the fair?|
|Season||Will the fair be seasonal? If so, which season will it be?|
|Type of fair||Fairs come in all different shapes and sizes: Halloween-themed, children’s fair, holiday fair, etc.|
If your carnival description will be geared towards promotional material, your description will be a lot different than that of a story. You won’t need any characters or plot - you will need informational descriptions.
|Fair audience||What type of audience do you want to attract? Families, teens, adults, etc?|
|Times||What times does the fair operate|
|Prices||What are the prices and are there any promotions?|
|Dates||The dates that the carnival will take place|
Finally, if you’re interested in professional descriptions of a fair, you will need different types of descriptions as well. Take a look at some examples below.
|Collaboration||You may want to collaborate with fundraisers or local businesses. This will require descriptions of benefits, promotional material, etc.|
|Costume design||Fairs often require uniforms or costumes. You will need a description of carnival costumes.|
|Services||Fairs require a couple of different services, such as food, rides and games. In order to engage different businesses, you will need to describe a business plan, logistics and more.|
|Official permits||If you’re organizing a fair, you will need to describe a detailed operational plan such as number of expected attendees, days of operation, emergency plan etc.|
What can you smell at a fairground?
If you’re interested in creative writing, this section is for you. If you find yourself having writer’s block, it might be helpful to complete some creative exercises in order to get some ideas flowing. Take inspiration from real life by thinking of your five senses:
|Smell||What can you smell at a fairground?|
|Sight||What can you see at a fairground?|
|Taste||What do you taste at a fairground?|
|Touch||What textures do you encounter at a fairground?|
|Hear||What can you hear at a fairground?|
As you can see, there are plenty of ways you can start to describe a carnival just by thinking of these five senses. Let’s start with the first one: what can you usually smell at a fairground?
|Food||Funnel cakes, French fries, candied apples, candy, barbeque, etc.|
|Environment||The forest, the rain, car exhaust, other people, etc.|
|Unexpected events||Think of an event that would cause an unexpected smell at a fairground. One example: smoke from a fire.|
What can you hear at a fair?
Let’s move on to another sense. What does one usually hear at a carnival? Let’s take a look at some of the things you might hear at a fair.
|Music||You might hear the sound of carnival music, car music, music on the radio, ringtone music, etc.|
|People||You can hear people’s laughter, conversations, yelling, announcements, etc.|
|Machines||You can hear the creak of rides, the thumps of games, the sound of credit card machines, etc.|
|Services||You might hear frying oil, ripping of paper and plastic, flapping of tarp, etc.|
What can make your story or promotional material more unique is to think of a word that describes an object, then think of another object that can have the same description using another sense. This is actually a literary device called synaesthesia.
|Synaesthesia||Describing something with a sense that is not normally attributed to it.||The taste of pepper is loud. The sun is silent today.|
What are some descriptive words?
When you’re reaching to find some descriptive words, it can be helpful to first pick a scenario. For example, it will easier to write a description of a fairground at night after you decide that the night is the time of day you want to portray. Let’s take a look at some other scenarios. Take a look at some descriptive words for each of the above scenarios.
|Time of day||Night, afternoon, day, etc.||You can describe the light of the day, the heat of the sun, the freshness of the air, the coolness of the night.|
|Location||Forest, parking lot, campus, etc.||You can describe the landscape, what you see or if you can’t see anything past buildings, trees, etc. You can also describe the colours.|
|Activity||Playing, running, eating, etc.||You can describe how it feels to perform the action, how long it takes, etc.|