LANG 5081

Research Writing Skills

Corequisite(s) LANG 5000

This one-semester course aims at enhancing the research writing skills of the research postgraduates in the Interdisciplinary Programs Office to help them meet the specific demands of their academic work. It particularly focuses on developing students' abilities in writing a wide spectrum of research genres, including proposal abstracts, papers and theses. Students who fail to fulfill the spoken English language requirement of the University are advised to take LANG 5000 before enrolling for this course (for students admitted in 2009/10 and onward).

Intended Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

1. Understand the specific discourse features of the writing of their own discipline and individual research interest, and internalize these into their research writing.

2. Identify the overall structure of a thesis or research paper, as well as the functions and conventions of its different sections (abstract, introduction, literature review, method, results, discussion and conclusion.

3. Use language effectively to write succinct and persuasive abstracts according to their specific purposes (for acceptance by conferences/journals, summarizing their thesis).

4. Integrate the introduction with the overall organization of a paper or thesis, and engage readers right from the start.

5. Include citations and quotations seamlessly in the literature review, and effectively synthesize different viewpoints to form a coherent argument.

6. Meet the linguistic challenges in writing papers and thesis chapters based on quantitative data, and in describing experimental designs and formulating research questions.

7. Present results accurately and clearly, and discuss their essence by making use of linguistic devices such as hedging.

8. Adopt rhetorical devices in the conclusion, and to make meaningful connections with earlier parts/chapters of a paper or thesis.