Academic Essay Writing - Academic Essay Writing A formula...

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Academic Essay Writing – A formula to be considered…. (and dismissed?) What is provided here is a possible formula for writing academic essays. Please remember there is no definitive way to write an essay; just as the Social Sciences do not provide a definitive account of how we are in the world and what reality is. Think of your essay as a 3-part exploration and explanation of how the social world works, i.e., i) in theory, ii) with reference to empirical research evidence and, iii) a critique of both of i) and ii). It is a matter of exploring the validity of various (sometimes contradictory) perspectives on key issues. Your own style, experience and ability might well be capable of improving on this formula, or indeed totally disregarding it. An essay is best approached as an intellectual argument that develops from the ideas, issues, theories, concepts, methodologies, etc., you have been taught within the module for which it is the final assessment . It is most important therefore – even as you begin and then progress through the module – that you are clear about the fundamental perspectives, values and assumptions underpinning the course’s main themes and topics as they are being presented to you in lectures and seminars. Remember no theory or perspective has the whole picture. All accounts of the world are partial and biased from a particular understanding of how we are human and what society is. Such-and-such a view is only the case under certain conditions . A prime purpose for an essay is to critique particular ideas, pointing out how explanation A might be more useful and valid than B in these circumstances . In the conclusion of your essay, on the other hand, you might want to point out that in other contexts (social, cultural, eras, etc.) there may be other factors that need to be considered. Do these limit or question the weight of claims you have made in the development of your current argument? Key questions before you embark on writing your essay. Have you identified clearly the key issue the essay question wants scrutinised? Have you checked the command word in the question – e.g. explain means give details about why a certain perspective can be advocated; evaluate means make a critical appraisal of the worth and validity for a particular explanation of how the world seems to work. In the development of your main argument, will you take a particular position
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Academic Essay Writing - Academic Essay Writing A formula...

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