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


Class Format

Class Schedule

Tutor Intro

Teacher Y — Writing Teacher

  • With more than 7 years of teaching experience, she mainly teaches English literature, reading, and writing courses for grades 8-12,
  • She also conducts writing seminars for students every week, and is the advisor for the school’s Poetry Writing club
  • With extensive teaching experience in writing competitions, she has helped many students to be selected for the New England Young Writers’ Conference;
  • She has won the Best New Teacher Award and Teaching Recognition Certificate in her city, and was invited to give a speech at the National Council of Teachers of English;
  • She is an expert at teaching non-native students, and can improve students’ English ability in reading, writing, speaking, and listening;
  • She received a master’s degree in English literature from Middlebury College, a top liberal arts college, and a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the College of the Holy Cross.
Class Intro

This course is designed to help students develop a strong writing process by generating, planning, composing, revising, and publishing a persuasive, argumentative, and narrative essay. Students will learn the basics of academic writing, citation, and the common mistakes to avoid in their editing process. Prior to beginning their writing process, students will also learn how to annotate articles and take notes to help them develop their essays.

  • Learn annotation, reading and note-taking skills.
  • Brainstorm, outline, draft, revise, peer-review, edit, and proofread a persuasive, argumentative, and narrative essay.
  • Understand the basic structure of an academic essay.
Course Content



1 & 2 

Annotating and Note-Taking Skills – Nonfiction Articles for Essays

Develop and get to know annotation codes for vocabulary, questions, comments, and more.

Structure notes: main ideas, explanations, details, connections. 

Reading strategies for the articles used for both essays.

3 & 4

Planning: Brainstorming and Outlining, Quote Selection & MLA Citations 

Learn and practice strategies for generating new writing ideas.

Organize ideas and structure evidence outline. 

Understand how to use MLA citations. 


Essay (Introduction) Hook, Background, Thesis

Create the opening, first-line or two, to the essay that connects to the topic in an interesting and engaging way.

Give an objective summary of background information necessary for an audience unfamiliar with the topic to understand the thesis.

Develop a global (universal) thesis = responds to the prompt more generally OR 3-point thesis = establishes the main claim followed by 3 sub-claims (body paragraphs)


Essay (Body Paragraphs): Topic Sentence, Evidence, Reasoning, Transitions

Create the first sentence of each body paragraph that previews what the paragraph will be about and builds on the thesis.

Provide supporting details that support the topic sentence. MLA citations will be used, and evidence will be introduced, contextualized, embedded, and cited.

Explain the connection between the evidence and the topic sentence (meaning how the evidence proves the sub claim) and then connect that proof to the thesis. 

Reflect on relationships between ideas when moving between body paragraphs.


Essay (Conclusion): Evolved Thesis, Summary, Concluding Statement

Rewrite thesis in a new and interesting way to show the development of their ideas rather than a reiteration of ideas.

Summarize the topic sentences and salient points, making connections between the thesis and a “big picture.”

Write the last concluding sentence or two at the end of the essay leaves the reader thinking, but not guessing. 

8 & 9

Revision Strategies and Peer Review

Use backward outlining/ rearranging for clarity and effect. 

Learn revision strategies.  

Understand the purpose of a peer review and how to give feedback. 


Editing and Proofreading Strategies 

Understand and correct sentence fluency, word choice, and punctuation within the essay.

Avoid common grammar mistakes and understand spellcheck. 


Students who are new to English Academic Writing and want to improve their writing skills.


After each class, the teacher will send course feedback, including course topics, homework and student progress.


15 hours of classes, 90 minutes/class

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