Some of you might be wondering about the necessity of writing so many essays, papers, reports, and analyses throughout your academic career. Do you really need it? Is this skill so important? Let’s find it out through the following blog post.
What Is Different About College Writing?
Is there anything different about college or academic writing that makes it so important to our knowledge and careers? Academic writing might be different for each of the students simply because they study different subjects and classes, and thus have different requirements for their papers. However, the terms “academic writing” and “college writing” are pretty similar and can be used to describe the overall tone and list of basic rules applied when writing college or university papers, as well as scientific research and dissertations.
When talking about academic writing among students, it’s common to use the words “college writing” due to a simple reason – the majority of students ace their writing skills specifically in college. But is it so different from high school writing?
High school essays are usually built in the same way – they are classic five-paragraph essays that require you to gather some kind of information into a piece to answer the asked question and fulfill the task. Such homework allows you to get acknowledged with a basic essay structure and general rules or requirements – you have to start it with an introduction, come up with a decent thesis statement, gather facts, and sum up with a conclusion.
Academic writing in college is far deeper. It teaches you how to analyze facts, think critically, prove your point of view, operate arguments and supporting evidence. Academic writing in college is also about you improving your researching and writing skills, learning a formal language, and expressing your opinions. All of these things are crucial for your adult life and college writing helps you in building those soft skills for your future career.
Why Do You Need It?
Many employers confirm that they prefer hiring college or university graduates even though practical skills can be taught in the process. But why? College gives you an opportunity to build not only hard skills but also soft skills, such as time management, teamwork, cooperation, perseverance, patience, etc. But one of the most important skills that you gain through college is critical thinking – the ability to analyze information, make decisions based on the current situation and data, and form a judgement.
The most common writing assignments at college are the ones that teach you how to:
- Analyze: to dissect something into its component parts and explain how those parts function or fit together.
- Argue: to state a point and back it up with arguments and proof.
- Classify: to organize individual objects into groups according to their shared traits, independent of other groups of items.
- Compare/contrast: in order to examine important similarities and differences between two or more subjects.
- Define: To explain, research, or give a general description of a term, concept, or phenomenon.
- Summarize: to rephrase the core idea or ideas of someone else’s writing.
- Synthesize: to combine different components or ideas from two or more sources.
As you can see, each and every type of assignment can significantly boost your skills in various fields which are important for your future career and life in general.
Though you might not be interested in a career as a writer, journalist, or even a scientist, college writing is still necessary in order to get needed skills that will help you a lot in other fields of knowledge. Moreover, college helps you organize your knowledge and structure it – instead of having random pieces of information mixed in your mind, you have rather formed and global understanding of connections between the facts, inner and outer correlations, how the systems work, and how to manage your knowledge to serve the practical problem-solving.
Developing your critical thinking while you are still in college is crucial as it helps you get a faster and better start in your career. The ability to cope with challenging tasks and operate information to your benefit is an important element of your soft skill baggage.
Critical thinking helps expand your skill set even further. If you ace critical thinking, you can grow in any direction of your liking. Even if it is one of the rather creative ones. Each and every profession requires you to have critical thinking to operate the information that you get and make your own opinion.
Academic writing though is quite different from creative writing is not the opposite. It helps you reflect and observe, use your creativity and combine them with a scientific approach. Your essays should not be boring if they are academic. So, don’t feel limited or bounded by the assignment rules. Rather think of it as a challenge to put all of your skills into one particular task.