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University of Reading

An Intermediate Guide to Writing in English for University Study

University of Reading via FutureLearn


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Develop the English skills required for extended writing projects and essays.

On this course you will expand your academic writing skill set and learn how to produce a thorough and high standard extended essay.

You’ll get an introduction to research tools, analysing an essay question, developing your argument, searching for credible sources and referencing, as well as learning more about the fundamentals like planning an essay structure, proof-reading and avoiding plagiarism. You’ll have the opportunity to practise researching and writing your own paragraphs for an essay as well as giving and receiving feedback.

Whether you’re a prospective undergraduate or postgraduate, or are currently undertaking university-level study, this course will give you the confidence you need to research, write and reference academic essays and extended writing projects.

This course is aimed at anyone interested in undertaking academic study in English, but it may be of particular interest to international students. You will require an IELTS English level of 5.5 and above.

If you’re new to academic writing, you may like to take A Beginner’s Guide to Writing in English for University Study before this course.


  • What is an academic essay?
    • Welcome to the course
    • What is academic writing?
    • Analysing the essay question
    • Generating ideas and choosing a structure
    • Language focus: Identifying a word class
    • Looking ahead
  • Reading and notetaking
    • Welcome to Week 2
    • Reasons for reading
    • Searching for information
    • Notetaking for an essay
    • Language focus: complex sentences
    • Review and reflect
  • Paragraphs
    • Welcome to Week 3
    • Elements of a paragraph
    • Paragraph leaders
    • Developing a paragraph
    • Language focus: summary nouns
    • Review and reflect
  • Referencing
    • Welcome to Week 4
    • Referencing
    • Summarising, paraphrasing and direct quotations
    • Avoiding plagiarism
    • Language focus
    • Review and reflect
  • Planning your academic essay
    • Welcome to Week 5
    • The essay introduction
    • The essay conclusion
    • Proof-reading
    • Language focus
    • Building on what you know


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4.8 rating at FutureLearn based on 207 ratings

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  • Khairuddin
    Hi sir/madam
    I want to learn how to write an academic writing
    I am doing my best i will prove that i can and i know this course will help me a lot

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