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Essay writing

Workshop topics

Help with the mechanics of essay writing and build your skills in how to approach them

One to One sessions

In addition to our workshops below you can meet with specialist study skills tutors who can help you with all aspects of academic work. 

Academic Writing Hour

In this 50 minute workshop, you will learn about the strategies and models of good writing, with a particular emphasis on argument and using sources. The session is 50% teaching: 50% writing. You’ll get hands-on experience of quick writing activities and samples of student writing.

  • 16 January How to use theory in your writing by chunking
  • 23 Janaury How to use theory in your writing by borrowing and extending
  • 30 January Writing about examples and images for evidence
  • 06 February Writing effective introductions and kickstarting your writing
  • 13 February Writing conclusions

Format:
50 minute workshop

15 places are unticketed and 15 places can be booked on Eventbrite. Feel free to drop-in.

These sessions for both beginners and practised writers at BA and MA level. 

You'll benefit from attending just one session or attending regularly.

Dates:
12:00 PM on Tue, 16 January, Prokofiev Room - Library - Book Here
12:00 PM on Tue, 23 January, Prokofiev Room- Library - Book Here
12:00 PM on Tue, 30 January, Prokoview Room- Library - Book Here
12:00 PM on Tue, 6 February, Prokoview Room -Library - Book Here
12:00 PM on Tue, 13 February, Prokoview Room Library - Book Here

For any inquiries, contact academicskills@gold.ac.uk

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Core - Essay planning and writing

An introductory workshop on advice and methods to make every stage of writing an essay easier

  • Interpreting essay questions
  • Planning methods and time management
  • Essay structure
  • Paragraph structure

Format:
90min workshop

Recommended for 1st year Undergraduates but open to all

Dates:
2:30 PM on Wed, 7 February, RHB 144 - Book here
2:30 PM on Wed, 21 February, MMB 11 - Book here

If you would like to know more please email: academicskills@gold.ac.uk

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Creative Writing and Academic Writing

The first half of this session involves a short creative writing exercise - suitable for both complete beginners and practised writers - and the second half practises strategies for transferring these writing skills to the academic context.

In these sessions you will:

  • become more aware of your processes around writing
  • use this knowledge to help you write more confidently in your own voice
  • practise a different fundamental element of writing each week
  • experiment with different kinds of writing techniques to help you develop your writing

Format:
90 minute workshop

Just bring a notebook and turn up! No booking required.
Beginners and practised writers will get tips to develop their writing practice at both BA and MA level.
These sessions are also useful for students who are encouraged to take a creative approach to academic work by their department.

Dates:
2:00 PM on Thu, 22 February, Prokofiev Room (Library, 2nd floor)
2:00 PM on Thu, 1 March, Prokofiev Room (Library, 2nd floor)
2:00 PM on Thu, 8 March, RHB 150
2:00 PM on Thu, 15 March, RHB 150
2:00 PM on Thu, 22 March, RHB 221

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Critical Thinking

Critical thinking is the key to learning and is at the heart of all academic writing. Critical writing involves considering and analysing evidence to make reasoned conclusions. It is therefore important to ask questions instead of accepting things at face value.

This workshop will help develop critical thinking skills needed to help with academic writing. 

 

Format:
90 minute workshop

Dates:
2:00 PM on Thu, 1 February, Prokofiev Room (Library 2nd floor) - Book here

If you would like to know more please email: academicskills@gold.ac.uk 

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Decolonizing Research Methods Part 1

These two-part workshops are based on the premise that Western academic research is an activity that occurs in a set of historical, political and social conditions that are tied to colonial and imperial practices.

Taught by an academic lecturer, each workshop involves:

  • Discussion of attitudes, assumptions and motivations that underpin academic study and research practices.
  • Engagement with academic writing produced by peoples who have traditionally been marginalized in Western academia.
  • Analysis of participants’ own values in relation to these contexts.

Format:
A series of 2 hour workshops

(It is possible to attend only Part 1, or only Part 2, although it is beneficial if you are able to attend both workshops.)

Dates:
11:00 AM on Thu, 18 January, RHB 150 - Book here
2:00 PM on Fri, 9 March, MMB 111 - Book here:

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Decolonizing Research Methods Part 2

These two-part workshops are based on the premise that Western academic research is an activity that occurs in a set of historical, political and social conditions that are tied to colonial and imperial practices.

Taught by an academic lecturer, each workshop involves:

  • Discussion of attitudes, assumptions and motivations that underpin academic study and research practices.
  • Engagement with academic writing produced by peoples who have traditionally been marginalized in Western academia.
  • Analysis of participants’ own values in relation to these contexts.

Format:
A series of 2 hour workshops

(It is possible to attend only Part 1, or only Part 2, although it is beneficial if you are able to attend both workshops.)

Dates:
11:00 AM on Thu, 25 January, MMB 109 - Book here
2:00 PM on Fri, 16 March, MMB 111 - Book here:

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Deconstructing Essay Questions

This workshop gives tips to help break down and understand questions and ensure that you address questions properly.

  • Identifying directive words
  • Identifying topic words
  • Identifying limiting words

Format:

30 tickets are bookable on Eventbrite and 10 drop-in, non-ticketed places are available on the day.

Dates:
1:00 PM on Thu, 22 February, Prokofiev Room (Library 2nd floor) - Book here
4:00 PM on Mon, 29 January, RHB 139 - Book here:

If you would like to know more please email: academicskills@gold.ac.uk

 

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Essay Writing: Paragraph Structure

In this session, you’ll receive strategies for writing effective paragraphs and view models of good paragraph writing. You’ll also learn how to create and strengthen argument through good paragraphing.

You will learn:

  • how to organise your information in writing
  • how to structure a good paragraph
  • how to use quotes and evidence effectively
  • how to build an argument through paragraphing

Format:
90 minute workshop

15 places are unticketed and 30 places can be booked on Eventbrite. Feel free to drop-in.

Useful for all essay writers of all levels - both beginners and praticsed writers, both Undergraduate and Postgraduate.

Dates:
4:00 PM on Mon, 19 February, RHB 139 - Book here

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How to Paraphrase

A workshop demonstrating the usefulness of paraphrasing in academic writing.

  • Learn the difference between direct quotations and paraphrasing
  • Practice expressing ideas you have read in your own words

Format:
40 min workshop

Open to all students

Dates:
2:30 PM on Thu, 15 February, Prokofiev Room (Library 2nd floor) - Book here
2:30 PM on Thu, 8 March, RHB 221 - Book here

If you would like to know more please email: academicskills@gold.ac.uk

 

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Making Thinking Visible Part 1

Based on the Harvard Project Zero, these two- part workshops use simple strategies to externalize thought processes. By making these processes more individually meaningful, you can better understand and manage their ideas and foster their writing practices.

Taught by an academic lecturer, each workshop involves:

  • Generating ideas (i.e. brainstorming about a given topic)
  • Classifying and categorizing ideas
  • Making connections between ideas
  • Elaborating on and challenging ideas

Format:
Format: A series of two 2-hour interactive workshops.

Dates:
2:00 PM on Fri, 19 January, Prokofiev Room (Library 2nd floor) - Book here:
11:00 AM on Thu, 8 March, DTH 109 - Book here:

(It is possible to attend only Part 1, or only Part 2, although it is beneficial if you are able to attend both workshops.)

Available to all students in all years.

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Making Thinking Visible Part 2

Based on the Harvard Project Zero, these two- part workshops use simple strategies to externalize thought processes. By making these processes more individually meaningful, you can better understand and manage their ideas and foster their writing practices.

Taught by an academic lecturer, each workshop involves:

  • Generating ideas (i.e. brainstorming about a given topic)
  • Classifying and categorizing ideas
  • Making connections between ideas
  • Elaborating on and challenging ideas

Format:
A series of two 2-hour interactive workshops.

(It is possible to attend only Part 1, or only Part 2, although it is beneficial if you are able to attend both workshops.)

Available to all students in all years.

Dates:
2:00 PM on Fri, 26 January, Prokofiev Room - Book here:
11:00 AM on Thu, 15 March, RHB 150 - Book here:

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Reflective Writing

A useful workshop for students with reflective writing assignments on professional or practice based learning experiences or those required to evaluate their study skills and learning.

  • Examines the writing conventions of reflective writing
  • Ways of connecting experience to academic theory and new knowledge

Format:
 90 min workshop

Students whose coursework includes any element of reflective writing. 

Dates:
2:00 PM on Wed, 14 February, Prokofiev Room - Book here

If you  would like to know more please email: academicskills@gold.ac.uk

 

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Visual Essay Planning Strategies

A workshop that aims to help you use a variety of graphic organisers, to help you plan and structure your essays.

 

  • Become familiar with using graphic organisers
  • Apply graphic organisers in the workshop
  • Identify the best structure for your essay using graphic organisers.

Format:
90 min workshop

Dates:
4:00 PM on Mon, 26 February, RHB 139 - Book here
2:00 PM on Wed, 24 January, Prokofiev Room - Book here

If you would like to know more please email: academicskills@gold.ac.uk

 

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What is a Thesis Statement?

A short practical workshop to demonstrate the importance of thesis statements.

In this short session, students will learn:

  • What a thesis statement is
  • Where it is located within written work
  • The purpose of a thesis statement

Format:
45 minute workshop

Dates:
1:00 PM on Thu, 25 January, RHB 150 - Book here

Students are welcome to bring their lunch along.

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Core - Zotero for Reference Management (beginners)

An introduction to reference management software and our recommended reference management software (Zotero). The session is aimed for all researchers/students that have not yet used Zotero to manage a library of references and produce a reference list.

  • To introduce reference management software
  • To install Zotero and register a Zotero account
  • To add records to your Zotero library and use the Zotero Connector
  • To introduce the Zotero word processor plugin
  • And produce a references list in a style of your choice.

Format:
90 min workshop

Recommended for researchers/students that have not yet used Zotero to manage a library of references and produce a references list.

Dates:
1:00 PM on Mon, 19 February, Prokofiev Room (Library) - Book here
3:00 PM on Thu, 15 March, Prokofiev Room (Library) - Book here

The training room does not have PCs so please bring a laptop with you.

If you would like to know more please email: academicskills (@gold.ac.uk)

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Core - Zotero for Reference Management (intermediate)

This second Zotero session is aimed for researchers/students already familiar with Zotero but want to know more about its advanced functionality. This includes detailing the word processor plugin, amending records in your Zotero library account and beyond.

  • To explain the different file types Zotero use
  • To introduce the Retrieve Metadata function
  • To use and evaluate the Zotero word processor plugin
  • To be able to add notes within Zotero
  • To backup your references
  • And resolve common queries related to Zotero’s advanced functionality

Format:
90 min workshop

This second Zotero session is aimed for researchers/students already familiar with Zotero but want to know more about its advanced functionality. Students who are completely new to Zotero should attend Zotero for Reference Management (beginners) first.

Dates:
1:30 PM on Tue, 13 February, Prokofiev Room (Library) - Book here
11:00 AM on Fri, 9 March, Prokofiev Room (Library) - Book here
1:30 PM on Tue, 20 March, Prokofiev Room (Library) - Book here

The training room does not have PCs so please bring a laptop with you.

 

If you would like to know more please email: academicskills (@gold.ac.uk)

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