Level up your academic writing style using familiar words

Improving your academic writing style doesn’t always mean learning increasingly-lofty vocabulary. You can also improve your syntax using words you already know. This post will show you how, with lots of examples you can adapt in your own writing.

Many of you will already know that linguistic signposting helps our readers follow our line of argument. For example, words like additionally and finally indicate what kind of idea is coming next. Therefore, adverbs like these are considered part of academic lexis. However, if you reread this paragraph, you’ll notice that overusing them or using them in the same structure many times makes for stilted, repetitive writing! Let’s see how you can improve this and ‘level up’ your style… Continue reading “Level up your academic writing style using familiar words”

Cause-and-effect relationships: It’s (not) complicated

Whatever your academic subject, you’ll invariably find yourself describing cause-and-effect relationships. Of course, in academic writing these relationships can be very complicated, but luckily the grammatical structures used to describe them often boil down to a simple formula.

When using verbs like lead to, cause, or generate, the structure is very straightforward:

noun (cause) + verb + noun (effect)

Even complex examples follow this simple pattern:

Others say globalization and lower levels of unionization may have led to a longer-term shift in the balance of power between workers and employers.1

Can you recognise the simple structure in this complex example? To explore in more depth, I’ve made a short video using lead to as an example.

Continue reading “Cause-and-effect relationships: It’s (not) complicated”