By the end of this section, you will be able to:
Why Do Writing Skills Matter?
Obviously you are able to write. And in the age of Facebook and smartphones, you might be writing all of the time—perhaps more regularly than speaking. Many students today are awash in text like hardly any other generation before.
So just why spend yet more attention and time on writing skills? Studies have shown that deliberate practice—that is, close concentrate on improving one’s skills—makes all the difference in how one performs. Revisiting the craft of writing—especially early in college—will improve your writing a whole lot more than simply producing page after page in the same old way. Becoming an excellent communicator will help you save considerable time and hassle in your studies, advance your career, and promote better relationships and an increased standard of living off the job. Honing your writing is a use that is good of scarce time.
Also, cons >1 It was the single-most skill that is favored this survey. In addition, many of the other valued skills are grounded in written communication: “Critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills” (81 percent); “The capability to analyze and solve complex problems” (75 percent); and “The capacity to locate, organize, and evaluate information from multiple sources” (68 percent). This emphasis on communication probably reflects the changing reality of work in the professions. Employers also reported that employees will need to “take on more responsibilities,” “use a broader set of skills,” “work harder to coordinate along with other departments,” face “more complex” challenges, and mobilize “higher degrees of learning and knowledge.” 2
You have to be someone who can anticipate and solve complex problems and coordinate your work with others, 3 all of which depend on effective communication if you want to be a professional who interacts frequently with others.
The pay-off from improving your writing comes much earlier than graduation. Suppose you complete about 40 classes for a 120-credit bachelors’ degree, and—averaging across writing-intensive and non-writing-intensive courses—you produce about 2,500 words of formal writing per class. Even with that estimate that is low you’ll write 100,000 words during your college career. That’s roughly equal to a book that is 330-page.
Spending a few hours sharpening your writing skills is going to make those 100,000 words much simpler and more rewarding to publish. All of your professors worry about good writing.
It’s Different from Twelfth Grade
Because most professors have different expectations, it may be tricky knowing what exactly they’re trying to find. Pay attention to the comments they leave on your paper, while making sure to make use of these as a reference for the next assignment. I try to pay attention and adapt to the style that is professor’s preferences. —Aly Button, SUNY student
By the end of senior high school you probably mastered many of the key conventions of standard academic English, such as paragraphing, sentence-level mechanics, while the utilization of thesis statements. The essay portion of the SAT measures important skills such as for instance organizing evidence within paragraphs that relate with a clear, consistent thesis, and choosing words and sentence structures to effectively convey your meaning. These practices are foundational, as well as your teachers have given you a wonderful gift in working for you master them. However, college writing assignments require you to apply those skills to new intellectual challenges. Professors assign papers since they would like you to think rigorously and deeply about important questions in their fields.
To your instructors More Help, writing is actually for working out ideas that are complex not merely explaining them. A paper that would earn a top score on the SAT might only get a C or D in a college class if it does not show original and thinking that is ambitious.
Professors look you to write as someone who has a genuine, driving interest in tackling a complex question at you as independent junior scholars and expect. They envision you approaching an assignment without a thesis that is preexisting. They expect you to look deep into the data, consider several alternative explanations, and work out a genuine, insightful argument which you actually care about.
Activity: Examining Your Writing Assignments
- Describe the goal of writing assignments and what a teacher might be prepared to see from your writing
- Identify common forms of writing tasks in a college class
- Review the syllabi for courses you’re taking this term. Make note of this assignments that are writing-based be asked to perform for each course you’re taking. For each one, identify the following:
- what kind of writing task it is (essay, journal, memo, annotated bibliography, online discussion, scientific report, etc.)
- simply how much of your course grade it represents
- exactly how much time you estimate it will require you to definitely complete
- what the objective of the assignment appears to be – why it really is a requirement that is graded of class
- Compare the list you’ve generated with a small number of your classmates. Just how do their lists of writing assignments compare to your very own? What exactly are some common factors across writing assignments? What exactly are some differences that are notable?
How to handle it With Essay Assignments
Writing assignments is as varied once the instructors who assign them. Some assignments are explicit in what exactly you’ll need certainly to do, in what order, and just how it is graded. Some assignments are extremely open-ended, causing you to be to determine the best path toward answering the project. Most fall somewhere in the center, containing information regarding some aspects but leaving other assumptions unstated. It’s important to consider that the first resource to get clarification about an assignment is the instructor—she or he can be very willing to talk out ideas with you, to be sure you’re prepared at each step to complete well because of the writing.
Most writing in college will be a direct a reaction to class materials—an assigned reading, a discussion in class, an experiment in a lab. In general, these writing tasks can be divided into three categories that are broad.