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The aims of Writing for University Courses

Writing for University Courses aims to help you write in the way which is appropriate for university level work. This is different from how you write in other situations (e.g. at school, at work, for personal reasons).

Writing for University Courses helps you to:

  • identify what is required in using written language at university
  • identify where you need to improve
  • practise using the sort of written language needed
  • check your own written work and improve it, before you hand it in.

You can return to Writing for University Courses:

  • whenever you write an assignment, to check your English before you hand it in
  • for advice on an aspect of written English or to practise something you need to improve.

Written work is very commonly used to assess knowledge and skills at university. How you write affects your grades and marks, even if the assessment criteria do not specifically say so! This is because how you write:

  • determines whether your reader understands what you are trying to say
  • creates an impression.

The marks and grades you get for written work do not just reflect how much you know or what you can do, but how well you express yourself. As a general rule, where assessed work is written (as opposed to e.g. calculations, presentations), the pieces of work which get the best marks are also well written - in a good, academic style.



© Learning & Teaching Institute, Sheffield Hallam University 2004