Language Centre

Academic Writing Modules for doctoral students

Dissertation Package

Consultation Module, XENA001, 1 ECTS

The module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring. Prior to the consultation session you are required to submit a sample of your writing and a 2-page self-analysis of your academic writing skills. This sample will help the instructor to identify your strengths and most pressing areas for development. This module can only be taken once as credit will only be given once. The module can be taken at any time during the research writing process (but ideally in the early stages). This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Citation and Referencing, XENA004, 2 ECTS

Accurate referencing is essential in academia not only because it demonstrates academic integrity, but also because it enables readers to locate your sources and see how your ideas have been influenced by others. This module focuses on the primary functions, the general principles and the basic mechanics of citing and referencing, as well as on using the source material to effectively support your own arguments. You will also have a chance to explore and discuss field-specific conventions and tendencies related to citing and referencing, different ways of using language strategically, as well as techniques that can help you maintain your academic voice when integrating evidence into your writing. Recommended in the second or early third year. This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Cohesion and Coherence, XENA005, 2 ECTS

Cohesion and coherence, which refer respectively to the connectivity of ideas between sentences and paragraphs and the way the whole text fits together, affect the clarity, communicative effectiveness and social acceptability of a manuscript. This module focuses on essential elements of coherence and cohesion, including the use of expected rhetorical moves, creation of paragraphs that follow a predictable structure, and use of language to link sentences and paragraphs, deliberately highlighting the logic and sequence of ideas. Recommended in the second or early third year. This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Qualitative Writing, XENA006, 2 ECTS

This module is aimed at writers who already have generated data for qualitative research with human subjects, and who are now in the process of combining theory with data in the writing process. The module will assist you with various representations of voice within the qualitative narrative, and is focused on covering such elements as reflexivity, the Voice Centered Relational (VCR) method of data analysis and various styles of thick description for building a personal narrative between you and your data. Recommended in the second or early third year. This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Effective Introductions and Conclusions, XENA009, 2 ECTS

The Introduction and the Conclusion sections occupy a rhetorically important position in a research paper, but writing them is often the most challenging task. The aim of this module is to provide help in writing these two sections more purposefully, being aware of their overall function and developing a more coherent structure that follows field-specific conventions. Participants will use the main principles and strategies to analyse articles in their field, as well as to improve their own texts with the help of peer and teacher feedback. Recommended in the second or early third year. This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Grant Writing, XENA014, 2 ECTS

This module provides support to doctoral students in writing successful doctoral research grant applications. The main focus is on writing a competitive research proposal and an academic CV in English that are convincing in both content and language. Students will also learn about useful strategies to make their application process more efficient through identifying key funding bodies within their area of inquiry, developing an application schedule, and adjusting their application to match the interests of specific research funders. Recommended in the first or early second year. This module is offered in the spring term.

Defence of Dissertation Day, XENA015, 2 ECTS

Doctoral dissertation defence process entails a number of communication challenges. In this module, we will discuss and work on different forms of popularizing one’s doctoral research findings (a press release, an elevator pitch, an introductory lecture). We will also attend to the defence day procedures, such as engaging in a debate with the opponent at the public defence ceremony or delivering speeches at the defence celebration. Recommended for final stage Ph.D. students. This module is offered in the spring term.

Scientific Articles, XENA016, 2 ECTS

This module focuses on scientific articles: their types, structure, and writing processes and strategies. We will also discuss the article publishing process, looking at the roles and expectations of different parties involved (the writer, editor, referee, reader) and process stages (such as choosing a journal or responding to reviewers’ comments). Module participants will work on their article manuscript and publication plan, and will give and receive feedback on own and others’ texts. Mode of work: group discussions, small group work and independent work. Assignments: a pre-task, work on own manuscript and publication plan, peer feedback. Recommended for those with no or limited experience in publishing internationally. This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Conference Package

Conference Abstracts, XENA007, 2 ECTS

The focus of this module is on developing research writing needed for scientific conferences. Participants will submit a conference abstract and will participate in an abstract session, whereby abstracts are reviewed and recommendations made. Participants will then resubmit their revised abstracts for publication on the conference website. Recommended in the first or early second year. This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Conference Presentations, XENA008, 2 ECTS

This module follows a conference simulation format and focuses on developing conference skills. Participants will prepare and deliver a short (15-minute) conference presentation, which will be video-recorded for individual feedback. Chairing skills will also be reviewed and practiced. Recommended in the first or early second year. This module is offered both in the autumn and in the spring term.

Conference Posters, XENA010, 2 ECTS

Professional conferences offer a variety of presentation formats. Opportunities for poster presentations are generally less competitive, and thus a great way to participate in conferences and build one's professional vitae. In this module we will examine effective examples of conference posters. Participants will then have the opportunity to create and present a poster based on their current research. Recommended in the first or early second year. This module is offered in the autumn term.

Testimonials

"I was really happy with the feedback from my consultation session. It was so good, not that my writing was good, but the feedback was great! Also the corpus tools module was so helpful that I shared it with my husband and he now is passing the information on to others."

"English is challenging for me so I was nervous at the start of the abstract and conference skills module. But I gained so much help and confidence that I am really excited about the tools module."

"These modules are great because it is so much easier to come to an eight-hour course than a longer one."

Contacts

kompassi

Street address:
Seminaarinmäki Campus,
Oppio building

Office hours: Mon-Fri 8-16

E-mail: lcinfo@ulc.jyu.fi

Postal address:
University Language Centre
P.O.Box 35
40014 University of Jyväskylä

Staff contacts