2016 Academic Writing B

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Energy Science and Engineering
Cross Jeffrey Scott 
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Course description and aims

This course uses a task-based learning approach to teach scientific writing skills to science and engineering graduate students. The classroom time is divided into lecture, group discussion/work on lecture topics, and student-student peer review/editing of written assignments. The tasks covered in the course consist of writing e-mail messages, conference abstracts, course/lecture notes, business letters, CV/resume, research paper, thesis and patent. The course will also use video lectures in place of lecture during class time using the blended or flipped classroom teaching model. The number of students that can enroll in this class is limited to 40.

Student learning outcomes

The purpose of teaching this course is for non-native English language speaking science and engineering graduate students to learn basic technical English writing skills needed for research activities and technical communications in energy sciences. The goal for the students is to advance their academic communication skills in English.


academic writing, scientific publish, paper, journal, communication

Competencies that will be developed

Intercultural skills Communication skills Specialist skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills
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Class flow

pre-class preparation, lecture or group work and homework assignment

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Course introduction, self-introduction, course sign-up, syllabus, course questionnaire and Canvas LMS. introduction to academic writing and course description
Class 2 Written personal communications and conversational strategies for group work written communications
Class 3 Peer review, rubrics, and groupwork including self-assessment vs. peer assessment differences grading rubrics and peer review
Class 4 Writing papers for top tier journals and academic journals including exercises publishing in top-tier journals
Class 5 Writing papers for top tier journals and academic journals including exercises publishing in top-tier journals
Class 6 What is intellectual property, how to write a patent and patent claims? intellectual property (patent)
Class 7 Writing a resume (online-linkedin), biosketch or CV resume and CV writing


course instruction material will be prepared by the instructor

Reference books, course materials, etc.

1. "Academic Writing: A Handbook for International Students", Stephen Bailey, Routledge, 3rd ed. 2011.
2. "Writing Science: How to Write Papers That Get Cited and Proposals That Get Funded", Joshua Schimel, Oxford University Press, 2011.
3. "Science Research Writing: A Guide for Non-Native Speakers of English", Hilary Glasman-Deal, Imperial College Press, 2009.
4. "The Craft of Research (Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing)"
Booth, Wayne C., University of Chicago Press, 3rd ed., 2008.
5. "A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations: Chicago Style for Students and Researchers", Kate L. Turabian, 8th Ed., University of Chicago Press, 2013.
6. Academic and Business Writing, edX MOOC from UC Berkeley,

Assessment criteria and methods

Course Grade Assessment: 30% attendance/participation, 70% writing assignments and quizes. Two or more unexcused absences from class will result in an "incomplete" as the course grade i.e. attendance is compulsory. Late homework will be accepted after the submission deadline but assessed after taking into account a 30% point reduction or penalty. All homework assignments must be submitted in order to receive a final grade for this course. No excused absence are given for missing class due to individual research activity.

Related courses

  • ENR.E610 : Academic WritingA

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Touch typing (typing without looking at your fingers on the keyboard) is an important skill that is needed for this class, since real-time in-class group writing will take place in class. Advanced English language (conversation, reading, writing) skills


This course will be taught on the Ookayama campus classroom with video linkage to the Suzukakedai classroom. Once during the quarter the instructor will be in Suzukakedai instead of Ookayama. Students who are ready to submit a paper to a journal for publication or present their results at an international conference will benefit the most from enrolling in this class.

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