2018 Academic Writing A

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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 blended learning course uses a task-based learning approach to teach scientific writing skills to science and engineering graduate students. The course lectures are videos that are online and can watched at anytime. Attending class in Ookayama is not required but encouraged. Classroom time will focus on lectures, answering questions about the homework and for groupwork. The tasks covered in the course consist of writing e-mail messages, conference abstracts, business letters, editing, writing papers for publication, copyrights and writing ethics. The number of students that can enroll in this course is limited to 20. If more than 20 students enroll, preference will be given to students with the highest english ability and essay on how this course is needed for their academic study.

Student learning outcomes

The learning outcomes of this course is for non-native English language speaking energy course doctoral students to learn technical English writing skills for academic communications.


Academic writing, scientific publishing

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

This class will use video lecture recordings that students watch online to learn about academic writing before class and complete group work as well as individual assignments to demonstrate their knowledge regarding academic writing. The classroom time will be split between face to face/video lectures and group work activities.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Course introduction, self-introduction, syllabus, course questionnaire and Canvas LMS course outline, communication
Class 2 writing, editing, tenses, transitions, writing well, online course writing materials and punctuation writing and text editing skills
Class 3 Academic publishing and communication, peer review, rubrics, assessing, groupwork, academic publishing models, peer-review, groupwork
Class 4 Written personal communications: letters and email messages writing letters and emails
Class 5 Academic strategic publishing, impact factors, conference presentations, literature search publishing in academia, impact factors, how to search literature
Class 6 Plagiarism, publishing ethics, retractions, and case studies of academic misconduct and copyrights (thesis) academic publishing ethics and what is misconduct
Class 7 Writing a resume (online-linkedin), biosketch or CV and cover letter for internship, abstract writing (peer-review) workshop and symposium oral and poster abstract writing, peer-review


Materials for this course will be provided by the instructor online using the Canvas course learning management system (LMS).

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: 25% participation in groupwork, 15% attendance, 60% written assignments and quizes. Late homework will be accepted after the submission deadline but assessed after taking into account a 30% point reduction or late submission penalty. All homework assignments must be submitted online in order to receive a final grade for this course.

Related courses

  • XEN.E301 : Advanced English Communication for Engineers

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 and for your career as research/academic, since all assignments are submitted online.


This class is being taught for Energy Course and ACEEES Doctoral Students only. The course will use online materials including videos and a Canvas online learning management system to manage the course contents and for homeworks submission. Students who are preparing 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. This is the first part of a two course series taught on academic writing for energy course and ACEEES students.

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