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The Types of Writing All Academics Should Master

Written by Jes D.A.

How Many Types of Academic Writing Have You Mastered?

To ensure your academic career is future proof, you'll want to learn how to write.

As Greta Solomon explains, although robots are currently unable to demonstrate "empathy, critical thinking, creativity, strategy, imagination and vision," human writers can already do this, and a Ph.D. writer is educated to do it at a very high level.

There are different types of writing academics need to master for different purposes. From proposal writing to secure grants to abstract writing to secure publications and everything in between, academic writers must be well-versed in many different types of writing.

Brush up on your writing skills for any of the types of academic writing by reading on to ensure success in your academic writing career.

Proposal Writing

As an academic, you may need to draft research or grant proposals. Written with the aim of outlining a roadmap for your research, a good research proposal allows researchers to best plan and communicate plans for their work, maximizing their chance for success. In terms of grant proposals, writing quality can literally make or break the bank.

Strongly consider the structure of your document when writing proposals. A linear and conventional structure (e.g., title, abstract, table of contents, introduction, research questions, literature review, methodology, conclusion, and bibliography) will allow readers to best follow your plan and optimize results. Regarding grant proposals, you'll want to be as detailed as possible in your outline in terms of funding, goals, timing, qualifications, and documentation.

To set yourself up for success in any kind of writing, consider editing. Proposal editing can ensure your content, tone, format, and more are suitable and ready for submission.

For more help with writing a research proposal, see "How to Write a Thesis Proposal" or "How to Write a Research Proposal." For help with grant proposal writing, see "How to Write a Grant Proposal."

Dissertation Writing

One of the other key types of academic writing is dissertation writing. Most academics must complete a dissertation to secure a degree. Dissertations comprise long explorations of large ideas. As such, structure is also important in this type of document, as well as adherence to other academic writing conventions regarding tone, citations, etc.

It's important to provide support for all the arguments included in your dissertation from trusted sources. In addition, all ideas referenced from another source need to be cited properly and should be done so consistently according to a conventional style.

Scribendi's editors can ensure your sources are cited properly and consistently to any style through dissertation editing.

For more help with writing a dissertation, see "How to Write a Thesis or Dissertation."

Abstract Writing

If you haven't written an abstract yet, you probably will soon! Of all the types of academic writing, abstract writing is quite common. In many fields, reports, essays, and studies begin with an abstract. The abstract exists to summarize research concisely while communicating its most important aspects.

In general, abstracts typically have strict word count limits that you must write within. Being able to do so concisely while including important information is the task of the academic writer. In addition, abstracts typically include a number of keywords that you choose.

Scribendi has over 20 years' experience revising abstracts effectively at a consistently high quality. See how academic editing can improve your abstract.

If you need help with abstract writing, check out "How to Write an Abstract."

Article Writing

Whether you've got an article writing process down pat or you dread the mere mention of article writing, as a type of writing, it's very common in the academic world. To succeed academically, being able to write articles well is important (with the Golden Rule of academia being to "publish or perish," after all!).

Drafting the article while keeping in mind any guidelines you must follow will allow you to best prepare the article for publication early in the process, saving you time and effort down the line. Be sure to include all the necessary information in the conventional order. Once you have completed a full draft of your journal article and its supporting features, take a break before returning to it for revisions.

Get academic editing to ensure that your text is clear, concise, and compliant with the guidelines of your target journal.

For more help with article writing, please visit "The Ultimate Journal Article Submission Checklist."

Email Writing

Although email and social media writing are not solely for the academic world, it is true that you'll need to be familiar with writing both professionally to communicate with colleagues and promote your research. For both types of writing, concision is important, as is ensuring an eye-pleasing format with perfect grammar throughout.

Sending an email riddled with errors or sharing a post to a social platform or site with poor formatting can convey a lack of effort. To prove your professionalism, be sure all emails and social media posts are error free before sharing them.

To ensure your emails are error free, try Scribendi's personal document editing service.

If you'd like more information on email writing, check out "How to Write a Professional Email."


Future proof your academic career by building your academic writing skills.

Whether you need to improve across the types of academic writing or just need a little assistance polishing your writing in a certain area, Scribendi is here to help.

Providing high-quality academic editing for over 20 years, we have the experience you need to succeed in all types of writing.

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Make every word count with professional editing and proofreading.

About the Author

Jes D.A.

Jes is a magician and a mechanic; that is to say, she creates pieces of writing from thin air to share as a writer, and she cleans up the rust and grease of other pieces of writing as an editor. She knows that there's always something valuable to be pulled out of a blank page or something shiny to be uncovered in one that needs a little polishing. When Jes isn't conjuring or maintaining sentences, she's devouring them, always hungry for more words.