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4 Types of Academic Writing Every Student Needs to Learn

4 Types of Academic Writing
4 Types of Academic Writing

Being a student you need to focus on your writing capabilities and it’s important to understand different types of academic writing especially when you study at a university. We already have an article that illustrates academic writing and general qualities of academic writing and most importantly how to plan and structure your writing. In this article, I am going to illustrate the 4 types of academic writing.

4 Types of Academic Writing Every Student Need to Learn

Indeed, there are many types of academic writing and each type has it’s own specific rules, features, and purposes. But here I am going to illustrate the 4 main types of academic writing that every student may need.

1. Descriptive

The common type of academic writing is descriptive. In this type of academic writing, you are given the task to describe objects, places, persons, emotions, experiences, events, or pictures and so on.

The purpose of descriptive academic writing is to provide facts or information about the object or title given to you. For instance, when a teacher gives a printed picture to students to describe the meaning of the picture in their own words. This called picture description when they describe the picture and talk about the fact in the picture.

Moreover, the descriptive writing assignment includes identity, report, record, summarise or define someone or something.

2. Analytical Writing

The analytical writing is more than descriptive writing. This type of academic writing is to be purely descriptive, but it requires you to analyze and set up or re-organize the facts and information into categories, groups, parts, types or relationships. The methods that you can apply in your analytical writing are:

  • Analyzing
  • Examining
  • Comparing or contrast
  • Relating

How to do your analytical assignment:

  • Initially, plan and create an outline for your paper. Think about the facts and ideas, and find the best way how to group them according to patterns, parts, similarities, and dissimilarities.
  • Make proper charts, shapes, diagrams or tables in order to analyze things better.
    In comparing things together try to name them for instance advantages and disadvantages.
  • Make a clear structure for your paper.
  • Give a clear introduction but don’t make a clear thesis statement, because you are only analyzing facts.

The main purpose of analytical writing is to show and analyze certain facts, views, or aspects of someone or something. Also, you should pay attention to the material, they must be reliable and contain relevant information that can be a solid background for your writing.

3. Persuasive

Persuasive writing is somehow similar to analytical writing, but there is a very important difference. Indeed, persuasive writing includes all the features of analytical writing plus re-organizing the information by adding your own point of view.

In persuasive writing, you convince the readers by argument, recommendation, interpretation that your certain idea or position on a particular issue is the right one. Each point you make should be supported by some evidence, research on the topics and study different views on it. In this kind of writing in order to convince the reader you can argue, evaluate, or discuss with a logical point of view.

Persuasive writing tips

  • Write reasonable viewpoints by reading some other resources.
  • Include strong and trustworthy supporting evidence and reasons.
  • Your explanations must be clear and to the point. Interprete each point logically and clearly.

4. Critical

Actually critical writing has all the aspects and features of persuasive writing. In persuasive writing, you write your own point of view on the topic, while in critical you add at least two points of view, including your own.

In critical writing, you should not write only one source to support your ideas. The main problem with using only one source is: what if your source says one thing, but most other writers say something completely different? In critical writing, you, therefore, need to consider more than one viewpoint.

In critical writing, you need to evaluate and analyze the information from sources, rather than just accepting it as being true. Additionally, critical writing evaluates and analyses the information from different sources or is writing which evaluates and analyses more than one source in order to develop an argument.

Tips for critical writing

  • Summarize each part of your writing clearly.
  • Write your opinion about the topic including pointing out some problems with it,  proposing an alternative approach that would be better, and/or defending the work against the critiques of others.
  • Make a list of facts that could support your own thoughts well, such as logical reasoning, a reference to authoritative sources and/or research data.

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