What is Academic Writing? Answer in a Nutshell

There is no doubt that every person, who is in the process of obtaining higher education, should know what is the academic writing. In fact, writing is the ability that is essential in many areas of human activity. Nevertheless, academic writing involves such specific elements and crucial factors, which are absent in all other types of writing. As a matter of fact, it has its distinctive selection of practices and established rules, which distinguish academic writing from all other styles of writing. Considering all the above, it is crucial to determine and formulate all the features of this type of writing and define what is the academic writing.

General Characteristics of Academic Writing

Generally speaking, academic writing is such a form of writing students are supposed to elaborate, responding to the educational material they learn in higher education institutions. This type of writing differs from all other types of writing, first of all, because it analyzes and examines various theories profoundly. What is more, academic writing proposes certain clarifications for a wide range of societal issues, events, and customs. Apparently, academic writing primarily is research writing, which is produced to generate and to spread information, which follows from the in-depth research. Academic writing is composed of the thoughts of the writer, along with evidence, facts, and arguments that supplements that thinking. This may include personal experiences of the writer, information gathered from a variety of credible sources, as well as information obtained from conversations with other people. As such, academic writing includes a number of genres, for instance, such as case studies, course works, research proposals, lab reports, and others. For students, the research paper is probably the most important among the research genres.

Elements of Academic Writing

The structure of this type of writing consists of the introduction, body, and conclusion. It is usually written in an essay format with an appropriate structure, in particular, such as argumentative, narrative, or explanatory. In addition, academic writing also requires substantive and thorough research, in order to support the content. A considerable distinction between the given type of writing and other writing styles is based on the necessity to cite and reference the published authors. Formal citations in a specific format, such as APA or MLA, are used for a bibliography page, as well as for in-text citations. Like all other styles of writing, academic writing possesses its own intonation, which dictates the selection of words and expressions. Finally, this type of writing requires compliance with rules of grammar and punctuation.

The Audience

In addition to all the above, it is crucial to keep in mind the audience. Being aware of the academic manner suggests that the writer knows the audience and respect the formality that is usually associated with this type of writing. Academic writing supposes that the writer should target a wider audience. The writer is obliged to assume that the readers will be intellectual individuals, but they may be unaware of the given topic.  Eventually, it is crucial to understand that the reader may not know all the definitions and terms associated with the work.