Academic Writer's Handbook

Leonard J. Rosen  
Total pages
July 2013
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Academic Writer's Handbook
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With its unique focus on source-based writing and writing across the curriculum, The Academic Writer’s Handbook contains all the features of a traditional handbook combined with the tools students need in order to read, write, and conduct research in the disciplines.


    • Coverage of source-based writing: Students get the foundational skills they need to read, respond to, and incorporate sources into their academic writing (Part 1).
    • Illustration of synthesis: No other handbook covers the process of synthesis, the skill students must master in order to write source-based papers in college. The handbook begins with an assignment, shows excerpts of various sources gathered in response to the assignment, shows how one synthesizes by finding common topics, and presents a complete source-based research paper (on computers and the music industry) demonstrating the goal of synthesis (Chapters 2-12).
    • Library of Academic Writing (Part 4): These chapters introduce students to eight core types of assignments they will encounter as academic writers: summary, explanation, analysis, literary analysis, critique, argument, proposal, and essay exam. Each chapter reviews essentials of the type, provides guidelines for writing, and offers 1-2 source-based papers.
    • Multimedia Resources (Part 8): These two chapters provide critical information on how to use images and new media (Web sites, blogs, wikis, slideshows, podcasts, and video) to present your work.
    • Making Arguments in the Disciplines (Part 3): Four chapters on writing in the Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural and Applied Sciences, and Business introduce students to the unique focus and interests of these areas. No other handbook offers such a complete introduction to the different types of thinking and modes of inquiry students will encounter as they move from discipline to discipline.
  • · Contains over 12 complete and fully documented student papers, covering topics from robo-hockey to banning junk food commercials. · Offers 7 fully annotated student papers that highlight the moves student writers make to create strong, coherent essays. · Covers the most updated documentation guidelines in the 4 major styles (MLA, APA, CMS, CSE), with QUICK REFERENCE INDEXES that identify the most common MLA and APA citations students will reference in their writing. · Provides full handbook coverage in a 4-color, open design that allows for ease of use.

New to this Edition

  • A reorganized Part 1 places an emphasis on the central role of sources in academic writing. Students are given explicit guidance on how to read, respond to, and incorporate sources critically in all of their writing, regardless of the discipline.
  • A new Part 8 on multimedia resources provides invaluable information on how students can use new media to present their work.
  • Two new chapters in Part 4, the Library of Academic Writing, provide guidance on composing common types of papers–literary analyses and proposals–complete with fully documented sample papers.
  • Four new sample papers–an explanation (Chapter 12), a critique (Chapter 21), an argument (Chapter 22), and a proposal (Chapter 23)–give students more models of how to craft different types of writing.
  • Updated, comprehensive coverage of MLA, APA, and CMS documentation styles in Parts 6 and 7 contain the latest information on citing sources. In addition, new Quick Indexes at the beginning of the MLA and APA chapters highlight the sources students are most likely to cite in their writing.
  • Expanded treatment of revision in Part 1 (Chapters 11 and 12) provides full coverage of this very important phase of the writing process, ensuring that students compose a strong, coherent paper.
  • A new topic interwoven throughout Part 1 (Chapters 2-12)illustrates the development of one student’s paper on computers and the music industry and follows each stage of that student’s writing process.
  • Handwritten corrections in Parts 9-11 show students how to identify and correct all of their errors so that their writing is clear and direct.
  • The e-text version of this handbook contains 14 additional student papers.

Table of Contents



Part 1 Critical Thinking and Reading

2. Understanding Sources 

  a  Understanding print sources

  b  Understanding Web sites

  c  Understanding images

3. Critical Thinking and Reading to Evaluate

  a  Evaluating print sources

  b  Evaluating Web sites

  c  Evaluating images

4. Responding to Sources

  a   Setting goals for reading to respond

  b  Applying techniques for reading to respond

  c  Moving personal responses into your papers

5. Summarizing, Paraphrasing, and Quoting

  a  Summarizing and paraphrasing sources

  b  Quoting sources

  c  Altering quotations

6. Weaving Sources into Your Papers

  a  Building evidence-based paragraphs

  b  Making standard “moves” with sources

  c  Weaving quotations into your sentences

  d  Identifying authors in your sentences

7. Synthesizing Sources

  a  Understanding your purpose for synthesizing sources

  b  Creating an index to your sources

Part 2 Critical Thinking and Writing

8. Understanding Your Assignment and Audience

  a  Understanding your assignment

  b  The audience for your assigned paper

  c  Generating ideas and information

9. Devising the Thesis

  a  Thesis definitions

  b  Focusing on the claim and your ambitions for the paper

10. Planning the Paper and Building the Draft

  a  Using the working thesis to identify parts of the paper

  b  Preparing a formal outline

  c  Writing a draft collaboratively

  d  Sample student paper: First draft

11. Global Revision and Peer Review

  a  Bringing your main idea into focus

  b  Peer review

12. Section/Paragraph/Sentence Revision

  a  Section-level revision: Developing your main idea

  b  Paragraph-level revision

  c  Sentence-level revision

  d  Sample student paper: Final draft   

Part 3  Making Arguments in the Disciplines

13. Writing Arguments in the Humanities

a  Overview of the humanities

b  Making arguments in the humanities

14. Writing Arguments in the Social Sciences

a  Overview of the social sciences

b  Making arguments in the social sciences

15. Writing in the Natural and Applied Sciences

a  Overview of the sciences

b  Making arguments in the sciences

c  Types of writing assignments in the sciences

16. Applying Principles of Academic Writing to Business Settings

a  Overview of business communication

b  Writing letters or e-mails of inquiry, complaint, and application

c  Writing résumés (print and Web-based

d  Making oral presentations

Part 4  Library of Academic Writing

17. Summary

a  Summary defined

b  Planning and writing the paper

Sample student paper in the Humanities (MLA)

18. Explanation

a  Explanation defined

b  Planning and writing the paper

Sample student paper in the Social Sciences (APA)

19. Analysis

a  Analysis defined

b  Planning and writing the paper

Sample student papers:

  in the Social Sciences (APA)

  in the Sciences (CSE)

20. Literary Analysis

a  Literary analysis defined

b  Planning and writing the paper

Sample student paper in the Humanities (MLA)