Language techniques have an integral role to play in academic writing. These techniques are crucial for writing an academic assignment with clarity and variant style. Variation of ideas, compare and contrast between ideas and transition can be depicted easily with the help of certain language devices. If you have a good command of the language, you can write about anything with clarity and precision. There are various language techniques that you can utilise to complete your assignments, and this article will tell you about some of the most important techniques used in academic writing.
Why Learning About Language Techniques Is Important For Academic Writing?
Learning about language techniques is imperative in academic writing because academic writing differs from creative and content writing. Most importantly, academic writing has a formal style, and the use of colloquial and slang language must be avoided. Moreover, academic writing is objective, and ideas are evaluated dispassionately; therefore, the personalised writing style is avoided. Language techniques help you employ certain language devices to make the text look precise and clear. It is imperative to show consistency between the ideas. Language devices such as compare and contrast expressions help you transition between ideas smoothly. So, learning about various language devices and techniques used in academic writing is crucial.
What Are The Different Language Techniques Used In Academic Writing?
Academic writing evaluates and examines ideas objectively and dispassionately. Therefore, it requires employing language techniques that are objective and impartial. You must avoid using personal pronouns such as “I”, “You”, or “We”. It is important to avoid using personal pronouns because you are not writing your assignment in the first person. Academic writing necessitates writing in an impersonal and requires using third-person pronouns. Academic writing requires authors to take an objective stance on issues and present their ideas as objectively as possible. Also, the objective stance of the author is further amplified through the use of evidence and logical reasoning. Therefore, researchers need to use objective language techniques in academic writing. However, it is important to remember that even if you avoid personal pronouns, it does not mean you cannot express your opinions. Your evaluation and analysis of the ideas are imperative; nonetheless, you can still express your subjective ideas and opinions coupled with logical analysis and evidence. For instance, let us analyse the following statements:
- I think democracy leads to political gridlock, and according to me, it is the worst form of government.
The above statement expresses an opinion; however, it includes personal pronouns, which are inappropriate for academic writing. You can rephrase this sentence in the following manner:
- It is generally seen that democracy leads to political gridlock and constant delays. Even the advanced democracies globally are struggling with the challenges posed by populism and inefficiency; therefore, Aristotle was right in asserting that democracy is the worst form of government.
Although the above-mentioned statement is more formal and expresses an opinion, it does so in a more formal manner and is supported by logical argumentation.
Formal Language Style
Academic standards necessitate using formal language techniques in assignment writing. Academic writing is clear and conveys information to the reader with the necessary information required to clarify the meanings. However, the poetic language used in fiction writing is dense and subtle because the author’s purpose is to evoke emotional responses from the audience by appealing to their subconscious. Similarly, even in a spoken language, you can use colloquial language or slang to hold a discussion because you are not restricted by a formal requirement. But in academic writing, there is a restriction placed by the formal style of writing for enhancing and clarifying the meaning of the information being conveyed. Therefore, it is imperative to use a formal writing style in academic assignments. You can make your writing formal by using the following techniques:
- Substitute informal expressions and vocabulary with formal expressions and words. Idiomatic expressions used in everyday spoken language must be avoided. Instead, use academic phrasal expressions; however, you must learn to use those expressions in context. The irresponsible placement of words and expressions without taking the expression into account impairs the meaning of the sentence.
- Do not use contractions in academic writing such as don’t, can’t; instead, use do not and cannot.
- Avoid rhetoric and oratorial style of writing
- Avoid colloquial language and do not use slang
Language techniques for academic writing encompass using precise language. Prolonging the sentences unnecessarily derails the communication process, and the reader fails to understand your intended meaning. However, it does not mean that you should avoid providing the details. Details are essential, but they must be conveyed precisely using a specific language. The details you will include in the body paragraphs will depend upon the type of topic you are addressing however it is imperative to avoid using ambiguous language. Let us analyse the following examples to understand the difference between generic and specific statements:
- Most people didn’t like the idea of granting civil rights to African Americans in the United States, but still, they thought it was better to put an end to segregation in public life.
Now the above-mentioned sentence is very broad and generic, which makes it look like a personal opinion. The statement does not specify How many people are ‘most’? How strongly they hated the idea of granting civil rights to African Americans? Who were the people who thought it was better to put an end to segregation in public life?
The above-mentioned statement can be rephrased like this:
- In the 1960s, while the majority of the Southerners expressed their dislike of granting civil rights to African Americans in the United States, they preferred segregation and blocked legislation to prevent Congress from passing the Civil Rights Acts; however, the Northerners were sympathetic to the plight of African Americans and favoured desegregation in public life.
Academic writing is formal, objective and precise. Colloquial language and slang must be avoided in academic writing. Contractions must be avoided, and authors must use the complete forms of words in writing assignments. The above-mentioned language techniques would help write academic assignments.