In this unit students will be introduced to skills and knowledge necessary to construct written arguments. With an understanding of the principles of academic integrity, students will develop research, notetaking, paraphrasing, synthesis and referencing skills. Students will improve their critical thinking skills through reading, writing and discussion. Students will explore how language, modality and tone influence academic writing. Students will analyse complex texts which model the scholarly characteristics, academic conventions and discourse used across a range of academic disciplines. The unit will step through the processes of research, reading, and notetaking whilst refining writing skills. Students will engage with the VU online learning management systems and library resources and databases.

Unit details

Unit code:

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Locate credible sources to support a point of view using library resources, databases and the internet;  
  2. Apply analytical reading strategies in order to develop, summarise and synthesise abstract ideas, explain inference and cite valid evidence to support an argument;  
  3. Reference appropriately according to source type and style; and  
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of academic writing conventions and effective writing skills.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Other Text analysis - Annotate text identifying the writing conventions introduced through the unit 20%
Other Discussion forum - Contribute and interact with online discussions 25%
Literature Review Locate and using appropriate database analyse two relevant articles 25%
Essay Investigate a topic (to be negotiated) and develop a well-constructed and referenced essay (1000 words). 30%

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