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CWSC MONTHLY | May 4, 2022

The Centre for Writing and Scholarly Communication (CWSC) is an educational support unit at UBC Vancouver. The CWSC draws on evidence-based research to design and deliver writing-focused programming for all community members.


New Workshop Series: Common Academic Expressions in English

Dr. Xuan Zhang, Centre for Writing and Scholarly Communication, is excited to announce a new workshop series designed for multilingual writers who hope to further improve their academic writing proficiency. The series includes four workshops that will be offered this summer:
Common Academic Expressions in English: Basic Functions (May 24)
Common Academic Expressions in English: Making Connections (May 31)
Writing in STEM: Common Academic Expressions in English (June 15)
Common Academic Expressions in English: Research Article Introduction (June 21)
These workshops are not dependent on one another. In each workshop, participants will be introduced to common expressions that perform a variety of functions in academic writing with authentic examples across disciplines. The aim of the series is to help participants develop better facility with using academic expressions to improve their academic writing competency.



Undergraduate Consultations | Graduate Consultations
Two formats of online consultation are available: In Person and Written Feedback. All students at UBC are invited to sign up for a peer-to-peer conversation about their writing. In Person Writing Consultations take place in the Writing Room on the third floor of the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre (1961 East Mall). We ask you to appear at the Writing Room no earlier than 5 minutes prior to your appointment time.


Writing Consultations return Tuesday May 24, 2022. Appointments are available to book now.

In Person Writing Consultation

May 24th, 2022 – August 11th, 2022
Tuesday, Thursday, 12pm – 4pm

Written Feedback Writing Consultation

May 25th, 2022 – August 12th, 2022
Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 12pm – 4pm

Postdoctoral Fellows | Faculty and Staff
Patty Kelly, Program Manager, who holds a doctorate in Writing and Discourse Studies, is available for one-on-one writing consultations with postdoctoral fellows, faculty, and staff.


Undergraduates, Graduates, Postdocs, Faculty & Staff

Common Academic Expressions in English: Basic Functions

Tuesday, May 24, 2022, 10:30am – 12:00pm PT

Did you know that 40% of language production in English is formulaic, that is, made up of common expressions? However, producing effective writing in English can be challenging for many non-native writers of English. The good news is, these formulaic expressions can be learned.

This workshop is designed for those who speak English as an additional language. In this workshop, participants are introduced to common expressions that perform a number of basic functions in academic English. Participants will walk away with a better understanding of how to use common academic English expressions in their writing, as well as the motivation and confidence to develop a larger repertoire of these expressions to further improve their academic English writing proficiency.

Common Academic Expressions in English: Making Connections

Tuesday, May 31, 2022, 10:30am – 12:00pm PT

One of the major challenges that academic writers encounter is making connections within the text, for example, making comparisons and drawing conclusions. Rather than counting on readers to figure out the meaning of a difficult text, academic writing requires writers to make clear connections between ideas. In this workshop, we introduce a variety of academic expressions that are commonly used by academic writers to outline the overall structure of the text, or specify the relationships between sentences. At the end of the workshop, participants will walk away with an awareness of the writer-responsible nature of academic writing, and develop better facility with using academic expressions to improve clarity in their own writing practice.

Graduates, Postdocs, Faculty & Staff

Literature Reviews: Mapping the Scholarly Conversation

Wednesday, June 1, 2022, 10:30am – 12:00pm PT

Literature reviews accomplish several purposes for scholars. In the introduction to a research article, research paper, or thesis chapter, for example, writers review relevant research in order to establish a research gap, problem, or need that the current study addresses. But how do writers summarize the scholarly conversation already underway and, then, join that conversation?

This workshop introduces researchers to the typical structure of literature reviews, while accounting for variation in communicative purposes, audiences, and disciplinarity. Participants will write or revise a section of a literature review during dedicated writing time.


Writing in STEM: Writing to Engage in Scholarly Conversations

Thursday, June 2, 2022, 10:00am – 12:00pm PT

Writing at the graduate level involves participating in ongoing debates and conversations in your field, especially through literature reviews and proposals. Engaging in this conversation requires aligning with certain perspectives while distancing yourself from others, and emphasizing certain interpretations while allowing for other perspectives. Managing this delicate balance of presenting your work objectively, cautiously and confidently is challenging; this workshop draws on linguistic research to present a framework for navigating these complex moves in writing. By understanding the various ways you can emphasize or exclude, allow for or limit other views and perspectives, you can strategically use language to persuade your reader of the validity of your research.
This workshop is the first in a series aimed at providing practical tools for writers. Participants might like to also sign up for “Writing to Weave Your Findings into the Scholarly Conversation” and “Rewriting for Clarity in Complexity.”

To learn more about all of the workshops on offer, visit our website.

Happy Holidays from the CWSC!

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Centre for Writing and Scholarly Communication

1961 East Mall Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z2 Canada