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Academic Phrasebank (for 8-year program students)

By Rachel Weaver,2014-07-15 10:30
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Academic Phrasebank (for 8-year program students)

Academic Phrasebank

    Writing Introductions

    There are many ways to introduce an academic essay or assignment. Most academic writers, however, appear to do one or more of the following in their introductions:

    ; establish the context, background and/or importance of the topic

    ; indicate a problem, controversy or a gap in the field of study

    ; define the topic or key terms

    ; state the purpose of the essay/writing

    ; provide an overview of the coverage and/or structure of the writing Examples of phrases which are commonly employed to realise these functions are listed below. Note that there may be a certain amount of overlap between some of the categories under which the phrases are listed.

    Introductory sections for research dissertations, are normally much more complex than this and, as well as the elements above, may include the following: a synopsis of key literature/current state of knowledge, synopsis of methods, lists of research questions or hypotheses to be tested, significance of the study, recognition of the limitations of the study, reasons for personal interest in the topic. Establishing the importance of the topic:

    X is the leading cause of death in western industrialised countries.

    X is a common disorder characterised by ......

    X is an important component in the climate system, and plays a key role in Y. In the new global economy, X has become a central issue for ......

    X has been thought of as a key factor in .......

    Xs are the most potent anti-infammatory agents known.

    In recent years, there has been an increasing interest in ......

    Recently, researchers have shown an increased interest in ......

    The past thirty years have seen increasingly rapid advances in the field of...... Over the past century there has been a dramatic increase in ......

    Traditionally, Xs have subscribed to the belief that ......

    The changes experienced by Xs over the past decade remain unprecedented. Xs are one of the most widely used groups of antibacterial agents and have been extensively used for decades to .......

    Highlighting a problem or controversy or a gap in the field of study:

    However, these rapid changes are having a serious effect ...... However, a major problem with this kind of application is ......

    To date there has been little agreement on what .......

    Despite its long clinical success, X has a number of problems in use. Despite its safety and efficacy, X suffers from several major drawbacks: Concerns have been raised about the poor ......

    This concept has recently been challenged by some studies demonstrating ..... The issue of X has been a controversial and much disputed subject within the

    field of .......

    So far, however, there has been little discussion about ......

    However, far too little attention has been paid to ......

    Most studies in X have only been carried out in a small number of areas. In addition, no research has been found that surveyed ....... So far this method has only been applied to ......

    Several studies have produced estimates of X (Smith, 2002; Jones, 2003), but there is still insufficient data for .....

    However, there have been no controlled studies which compare differences in ...... The experimental data are rather controversial, and there is no general agreement about ......

    Focus and aim:

    This paper will focus on/examine/give an account of ...... This paper seeks to address the following questions:

    The purpose of this paper is to review recent research into the ...... This paper will review the research conducted on ......

    In this paper I argue that .....

    This paper reviews the literature concerning the use of ...... The aim of this paper is to determine/examine ......

    The aim of this study was to evaluate and validate ...... Outline of structure:

    The main questions/issues addressed in this paper are: a), b and c). This paper first gives a brief overview of the recent history of X.

Explaining Keywords

    While a variety of definitions of the term X have been suggested, this paper will use. Throughout this paper the term X will refer to/will be used to refer to ....... In this article the acronym/abbreviation XYZ will be used.

    Referring to Literature

    General descriptions of the relevant literature: A considerable amount of literature has been published on X. These studies ...... The generalisability of much published research on this issue is problematic. What we know about X is largely based upon empirical studies that investigate how ...... During the past 30 years much more information has become available on ...... In recent years, there has been an increasing amount of literature on ....... A large and growing body of literature has investigated ......

    General reference to previous research/scholarly activity (usually more than one author)

    Numerous studies have attempted to explain ..... (for example, Smith , 1996; Kelly, 1998; Johnson, 2002)

    Recent evidence suggests that ....... (Smith, 1996; Jones 1999; Johnson, 2001)

    Recently, in vitro studies have shown that T.thermophylus EFTu can ...... (Patel et al., 1997; Jones et al., 1998).

    Surveys such as that conducted by Smith (1988) have shown that ......

    Several attempts have been made to ....... (Smith, 1996; Jones 1999; Johnson, 2001)

    Several studies have revealed that it is not just X that acts on ...... (Smith, 1996; Jones ....... Several studies investigating X have been carried out on ......

    Previous studies have reported ...... (Smith, 1985; Jones, 1987; Johnson, 1992).

    Previous research findings into X have been inconsistent and contradictory (Smith, 1996;

    Jones 1999, ......

    A number of studies have found that ...... (Smith , 2003; Jones, 2004).

    The relationship between X and Y has been widely investigated (Smith, 1985; Jones,

    1987, .......

    The causes of X have been widely investigated (Jones, 1987; Johnson, 1990; Smith,

1994).

    The geology of X has been addressed in several smallscale investigations and .......

    Xs have been identified as major contributing factors for the decline of many species (1).

    X has also been shown to reverse the anti-inflammatory effects of glucocorticoids in murine-induced arthritis (11).

    It has been suggested that levels of X are independent of the size of the Y (Smith et al., 1995)

    It has conclusively been shown that X and Y increase Z (Smith et al., 1999; Jones, 2001 ......

    It has been demonstrated that a high intake of X results in damage to ...... (Smith, 1998; ......

    Reference to current state of knowledge

    A relationship exists between an individual's working memory and their ability to ......

    (Jones et al.,1998).

    There is an unambiguous relationship between spending on education and economic development (Rao, 1998).

    X is one of the most intense reactions following CHD (Lane, 2003). MIF has been found to oppose the anti-infammatory actions of X on Y (Alourfi, 2004). Reference to single investigations in the past: researcher(s)

    as sentence subject

    found that as levels of literacy and education of the population rise .............

    Smith (1999) showed that reducing X to 190oC decreased ...... (see figure 2) .

    demonstrated that when the maximum temperature is exceeded .......

    investigated the differential impact of formal and non-formal education on ......

    analysed the data from 72 countries and concluded that .......

    reviewed the literature from the period and found little evidence for this claim.

    interviewed 250 undergraduate students using semi-structured questionnaires.

    studied the effects of Cytochrome P450 on unprotected nerve cells.

    performed a similar series of experiments in the 1960s to show that ...... Jones et al. (2001)

    carried out a number of investigations into the ......

    conducted a series of trials in which he mixed X with different quantities of ....

    measured both components of the ......

    labelled these subsets as .......

    examined the flow of international students ...... ......

    identified parents of disabled children as .....

    used a survey to assess the various .......

    Wang et al. (2004) have recently developed a methodology for the selective introduction of ......

    Reference to single investigations or publications in the past:

    time frame prominent

    In 1975, Smith et al. published a paper in which they described .....

    Smith (1974) reported three cases of Candida Albicans which ....... In 1981, Smith and co workers demonstrated that X induced in vitro resistance to ....... In 1990, El-Guerrouj et al. reported a new and convenient synthetic procedure to obtain ......

    In 1984 Jones et al. made several amino acid esters of X and evaluated them as water-soluble pro-drugs.

    Reference to single investigations in the past: investigation

    prominent

    A recent study by Smith and Jones (2001) involved ......

    A longitiudinal study of X by Smith (2002) reports that ......

    A small scale study by Smith (2002) reaches different conclusions, finding no increase in ......

    Smith's cross-country analysis (2002) showed that ......

    Smith's comparative study (2002) found that ......

    Detailed examination of X by Smith and Patel (1961) showed that ......

    In another major study, Zhao (1974) found that just over half of the ...... In a radomised controlled study of X, Smith (2004) reported that ......

    In a large longitudinal study, Boucahy et al. 2004) investigated the incidence of X in Y.

Reference to single investigations in the past: research topic

    as subject

    Classical conditioning was first demonstrated experimentally by Pavlov (Smith, 2002). In his seminal study ......

    X formed the central focus of a study by Smith (2002) in which the author found ...... X was originally isolated from Y in a soil sample from ...... (Wang et al., 1952). The way in which the X gene is regulated was studied extensively by Ho and colleagues (Ho et al. 1995 and 1998).

    To determine the effects of X, Zhao et al (2005) compared ...... Reference to what other writers do in their text (author as subject)

    Smith (2003) identifies poor food, bad housing, inadequate hygiene and large families as the major causes of ......

    Rao (2003) lists three reasons why the English language has become so dominant. These are: ......

    Smith (2003) traces the development of Japanese history and philosophy during the 19th century.

    Jones(2003) provides in-depth analysis of the work of Aristotle showing its relevance to contemporary times.

    Smith (2003) defines evidence based medicine as the conscious, explicit and judicious use of .....

    Rao (2003) highlights the need to break the link between economic growth and transport growth ......

    Toh (2003) mentions the special situation of Singapore as an example of ..... Smith (2003) questions whether mainstream schools are the best environment for ...... Smith (2003) considers whether countries work well on cross-border issues such as ......

    Smith (2003) uses examples of these various techniques as evidence that ...... In her major study,

    In her seminal article,

    In her classic critique

    of ......, Smith (2004) identifies five characteristics of ....... In her case study

    of ......,

    In her review of ......,

    In her analysis of ......,

In her introduction

    to ......,'

    Some analysts (eg Carnoy, 2002) have attempted to draw fine distinctions between ........

    Other authors ( see Harbison, 2003; Kaplan, 2004) question the usefulness of such an approach.

    Reference to other writers' ideas (author as subject) According to Smith (2003), preventative medicine is far more cost effective, and therefore better adapted to the developing world.

    points out

    argues preventative medicine is far more cost maintains Smith (2003) that effective, and therefore better adapted to claims the developing world concludes

    suggests

    argues for

    offers an explanatory theory for each type of irrational Smith (2003) proposes belief.

    suggests

    This view is supported by Jones (2000) who writes ......

    Smith argues that her data support O'Brien's (1988) view that ...... As Smith reminds us, ..............

    Elsewhere, Smith has argued that ......

    Being Critical

    As an academic writer, you are expected to be critical of the sources that you use. This essentially means questioning what you read and not necessarily agreeing with it just because the information has been published. Being critical can also mean looking for reasons why we should not just accept something as being correct or true. This can require you to identify problems with a writer's arguments or methods, or perhaps to refer to other people's criticisms of these. Constructive criticism goes beyond this by suggesting ways in which a piece of research or writing could be improved.

    ...... being against is not enough. We also need to develop habits of constructive thinking. Edward de Bono

    Introducing questions, problems and limitations One question that needs to be asked, however, is whether ...... A serious weakness with this argument, however, is that ...... One of the limitations with this explanation is that it does not explain why... . The key problem with this explanation is that ......

    The existing accounts fail to resolve the contradiction between X and Y. However, there is an inconsistency with this argument.

    Smith's argument relies too heavily on qualitative analysis of ...... It seems that Jones' understanding of the X framework is questionable. Smith's interpretation overlooks much of the historical research ...... One major criticism of Smith's work is that .....

    Many writers have challenged Jones' claim on the grounds that ....... Another problem with this approach is that it fails to take X into account. Perhaps the most serious disadvantage of this method is that ..... Difficulties arise, however, when an attempt is made to implement the policy. Nevertheless, the strategy has not escaped criticism from governments, agencies and academics.

    One major drawback of this approach is that ......

    The main limitation of biosynthetic incorporation, however, is ...... However, this method of analysis has a number of limitations.

    However, approaches of this kind carry with them various well known limitations. All the studies reviewed so far, however, suffer from the fact that .......

    limitations

    However, all the previously mentioned weaknesses

    methods suffer from some serious disadvantages

    drawbacks.

    Identifying a study's weakness:

    the main weakness of the study is the failure to address how .......

    the study fails to consider the differing categories of damage

    that ..... (However,) the research does not take into account pre-existing ...... such

    as ......

    the author offers no explanation for the distinction between X and

    Y.

    Smith makes no attempt to differentiate between various different

    types of X.

    Jones fails to fully acknowledge the significance of ......

    the author overlooks the fact that X contributes to Y.

    what Smith fails to do is to draw a distinction between ......

    another weakness is that we are given no explanantion of how ......

    no attempt was made to quantify the association between X and Y.

Offering constructive suggestions:

    useful Smith's paper more included ...... would have if he/she convincing been had Her much considered ...... conclusions more interesting might if the adopted ...... have author The study far persuasive been had used ...... more The findings original

    A better study would examine a large, randomly selected sample of societies with ...... A much more systematic study would identify how X interacts with other variables that are believed to be linked to ......

    Introducing other people's criticisms:

    However, Jones (2003) points out that .....

    Many analysts now argue that the strategy of X has not been successful. Jones (2003), for example, argues that .....

    Non-government agencies are also very critical of the new policies. The X theory has been / vigorously / strongly challenged in recent years by a number of writers.

    Smith's analysis has been criticised by a number of writers. Jones (1993), for example, points out that ……

    Smith's meta-analysis has been subjected to considerable criticism. The most important of these criticisms is that Smith failed to note that ...... More recent arguments against X have been summarised by Smith and Jones (1982):

Describing Methods

    In the Methods section of a dissertation or research article, writers give an account of how they carried out their research.The Materials and Methods section should be clear and detailed enough for another experienced person to repeat the research and reproduce the results. Typical features with examples of this language are listed below.

    Giving reasons why a particular method was adopted

    The semi-structured approach was chosen because ......

    A case study approach was chosen to allow a ......

    The design of the questionnaires was based on ......

    It was considered that quantitative measures would usefully supplement and extend the qualitative analysis.

    Indicating a specific method

    X was prepared according to the procedure used by Patel et al. (1957). The synthesis of X was done according to the procedure of Smith (1973). X was synthesised according to the procedure of Smith (1973).

    This compound was prepared by adapting the procedure used by Zhao et al. (1990). For this study the X was used to explore the subsurface ……

    Indicating sample size and characteristics

    The initial sample consisted of 200 students, 13 of whom did not complete all of the interviews.

    All studies described as using some sort of X procedure were included in the analysis.

    All of the participants were aged between 18 and 19.....

    Patients were recruited from .......

    Forty-seven students studying X were recruited for this study.

    The students were divided into two groups based on their performance on ...... Over half the samples (53%) were female, of whom 69% were ......

    Describing the process: infinitive of purpose

    In order to identify the T10 and T11 spinous processes, the subjects were asked to ......

    In order to understand how X regulates Y, a series of transfections was performed..

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