The 1st of September 2019 saw the very first Institutum Grammatica taster day. It was an amazing experience. The best part was meeting all of you wonderful people and we hope we will meet again soon. The most popular session was the 5 keys of academic writing.

Here’s what some of you had to say:

“It was really good and I learnt a lot. You really did give us a gift!”

“I appreciate you taking the time in imparting your knowledge with us and teaching us how to develop our skills in wowing the audience. You were very accommodating and professional and I was happy to meet you.”

“I’m impressed with the best features of your offerings and advocacies.”

I hope the attendees were able to benefit from the very brief introduction into the key elements of academic writing. On the full Academic English course these elements along with others are explored further in more detail. However, in the session titled “the 5 keys of academic writing” we only looked at four keys. So, as promised, here is the fifth key.

The fifth key is “referencing”. It is connected very closely to the first key, yet different at the same time. Something may be very well researched (key 1), but without appropriate referencing, it would be considered academically incomplete. So, they are two different concepts. Referencing is a concept and key that is deserving to be on its own. It refers to how to use sources found during your research.

A referencing system is needed when it comes to using sources in your academic writing. The most popular referencing system used in British universities is the Harvard referencing system. This was obviously covered briefly in one of the other sessions on taster day and it is one of the modules of the Academic English course. The reasons why you need to research and then reference your work was covered in that session.

When it comes to actually referencing, to put it very simply, each source needs to be mentioned in your writing twice. Once in the text and once at the end of the text. The in text reference is also known as a citation and this contains the surname of the author and year the writing was published in. There are some exceptions to this, but this is the norm. The end of text reference is known as the reference list and this list contains the rest of the details of the source such as the book name (for a book) and web address (for the website). The citation is used to locate the source in the reference list and the reference list is used to locate the original source.

Finally, thank you very much for attending and I hope you did benefit. See you soon!