Academic Writing

This course aims to help students develop strong writing skills by learning to write and revise three essays that are persuasive, argumentative and narrative. Students will learn to write, cite and avoid common mistakes in academic writing. Before starting the writing process, students will also learn how to annotate and take notes to help them write a paper.
Designed for

Students who want to improve on their academic writing skills


Grades 8-10

Class format

One-on-one and small group (Max. 7 students/class)

Class Introduction

In this Academic Writing class, students will refine their academic writing skills in preparation for middle and high school academic endeavors. The course is centered around enhancing students’ abilities in writing, literature research, and logical reasoning. Throughout the course, students will develop proficiency in crafting persuasive, argumentative, and rhetorical analysis essays. Additionally, they will gain an understanding of the importance of citations and learn effective strategies for citing and incorporating sources into their writing.

In addition to our monthly classes, we also offer a 2-week-long Academic Writing Intensive Course in the summer. 

Teacher Background
  • 30 years of experience in teaching English at American high schools,
  • Previously served as an English teacher at Tabor Academy, a top 50 private boarding high school in the United States, and Cushing Academy.

After completing the course, students will:

  • Understand how to assess the rhetorical situation of other speakers and writers and how to assess their own rhetorical situation for a writing assignment.
  • Understand the purpose of thesis statements in academic essays and be able to craft their own thesis statements.
  • Be able to craft effective claims and body paragraphs in persuasive, argumentative, and rhetorical analysis essays.
  • Understand how to use personal anecdotes as evidence.
  • Be able to make concessions and refutations in their writing.
  • Understand how to handle counter-arguments in their writing.
  • Be able to craft effective conclusions in their writing.
  • Be able to introduce the arguments of other sources into their writing as evidence backing up their claims.
  • Understand how to format citations in-text and on a Works Cited page.
  • Be able to read and analyze arguments to understand the claims writers are making and the evidence they are using to support their claims.
  • Understand the three Aristotelian rhetorical appeals (Ethos, Pathos, Logos) and other rhetorical strategies.
  • Understand how to use SOAPSTone to help them analyze another speaker’s rhetorical situation (Speaker, Occasion, Audience, Purpose, Subject, Tone).
  • Be able to smoothly integrate quotes and paraphrases from other writers in their essays.
  • Understand the weaknesses of certain rhetorical strategies.
  • Understand how to avoid common citation and grammar mistakes
Learning Topics

Students will learn to write three major types of academic writing essays: persuasive essays, argumentative essays, and rhetorical analyses, as well as literary analysis and effective citation methods.


Students and their parents will receive brief feedback after each class, regarding the student’s general participation in class. Students will also receive feedback on homework assignments via email. 

Class Schedule

Regular Course: 10 classes, 2 hours each, 20 hours of class in total. 

Intensive Course: 6 group classes, 2 hours each, 12 hours in total

Need to prepare?

To best prepare for this program, we recommend reading:

2024 Summer Group Classes: Open for Registration

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