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Academic English Writing Style


2018年9月12日,第二次学术英语写作课,感觉这学期的英语课比以往有趣多了。这次讲了学术英语与口头英语的区别,以及学术英语的写作规范,下节课将讲述学术论文的结构。

Academic Writing Style: Vocabulary

a. Use appropriate academic words
(see Academic Word List or Oxford Advanced Leaner’s Dictionary.)
其中Academic Word List (AWL) 主要是一个主要单词后面跟一堆衍生词,都是在学术英语中常见的单词,没事可以背一些

b. Avoid informal language. 避免使用不正式的语言
(kind of ==> somewhat, stuff ==> information, lots of ==> numerous (a signifcan number of), guys ==> men, etc.)

c. Avoid phrasal verbs 避免使用动词短语
such as keep up, get by, take on. They are usually too informal. Use more formal single verbs (e.g. maintain, survive, recruit).

d. Use appropriate, descriptive reporting verbs. 采用适当的描写性的转述动词
(think ==> assert, mention ==> illustrate)

e. Include field-specific, technical language. 使用专业术语

Academic Writing Style: Grammar

a. Avoid contractions 避免缩写
It’s ==> It is, can’t ==> cannot, etc.

b. Use formal negative forms. 使用正式的否定形式
not…any ==> no, not much ==> little
The analysis didn’t yield any new results. ==> The analysis yielded no new results

c. Limit the use of “run on” expressions, such as “and so forth” and “etc.” 减少“等等”的表达
These semiconductors can be used in robots, CD players, etc. ==> _________

d. Place adverbs within the verb phrases.把副词放在动词词组中间
Adverbs are often placed mid-position rather than in the initial or final position.
In informal English, adverbs often occur at the beginning or end of sentences.
Then the solution can be discarded. ==> ______

e. Avoid excessive “personal language” 避免使用过多与人有关的,一般多把物体当做主语
– addressing the reader as “you” (except if you are writing a textbook). This means that there is much use of passive structures or nouns as subjects or objects.
You can see the results in Table 1. ==> The results can be seen in Table 1.

Exercise: Reducing informality

1. OK, what are the reasons that coffee prices have fallen? There’re a lot of possibilities.
A large number of possible reasons causes the decreased coffee prices.

2. You can see the difference between these two approaches to designing underground subway stations clearly.
The difference between these two approaches to designing underground subway stations can be seen clearly.

3. There isn’t very much research on e-reader devices and the effect they hold on learning.
The research on e-reader devices and the effect they hold on learning is little.

4. There are some studies that have concluded that bamboo could be used by builders more widely than it is now as a construction material.
XXX(year) have concluded that bamboo could be used by builders more widely than it is now as a construction material.

5. So far there hasn’t been any comprehensive study looking into the role of smiling in getting the initial trust of individuals. So far there has no comprehensive study investigating the role of smiling in getting the initial trust of individuals.

Academic English Feartures

  1. Density:学术文章中会有一连串的名词词组,一个句子中或许会只有一个动词
  2. Formailty:正式,严谨,避免使用口语化的表达(a lot of, thing, sort of)、缩略语(can’t, shouldn’t)
  3. Objectivity:客观,避免使用 In my opinion. I think, you, 多用事物的被动语态
  4. Precision:用数据说话
  5. Accuracy:用词要准确
  6. Explicitness,说到别人想法时要说到出处
  7. Hedging
  8. Responsiblity
    8.1 你对其他文章理解的陈述要负责
    8.2 对证据和论证负责

学术英语常用衔接词

It is claimed that….. 据说
It is widely believed that ….
be supported by


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