Online course

Writing an Academic Essay: Learning English for Academic Purposes

Improve your academic reading, vocabulary and study skills and gain confidence in writing academic essays in English.

Writing an Academic Essay: Learning English for Academic Purposes

Improve your academic essay writing skills in English.

On this online course, you will learn useful reading and note-making strategies, then find out how to make effective and appropriate use of information and ideas from your readings in your essays. You will gain vocabulary learning skills and learn how to structure sentences, paragraphs and essays. In the final weeks, you will use these skills to submit an academic essay and receive detailed Educator feedback.

Throughout, you will read academic texts and learn vocabulary related to business and management, focusing on teamwork, leadership, organisational culture, marketing and globalisation.

What topics will you cover?

  • How to work collaboratively with others.
  • Reading academic texts.
  • Critical reading - what is it and how do you do it?
  • Different ways of making notes.
  • Good academic practice, including sourcing, quoting and paraphrasing techniques.
  • Develop an academic style.
  • Academic vocabulary, dictionary skills and how to use ‘cautious’ language.
  • Structuring texts, paragraphs and essays.
  • Summarising texts and writing concisely.
  • Including evidence and examples to support your ideas.
  • Create your own academic essay from what you’ve learned.
  • Get detailed feedback from an Educator on your academic essay.

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced
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What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Develop key skills when reading academic texts.
  • Apply the principles of critical reading to academic texts.
  • Demonstrate good academic practice including sourcing material, quoting and paraphrasing.
  • Summarise academic texts concisely and effectively.
  • Compare and contrast evidence and examples to support your ideas.
  • Identify and develop your own academic writing style.
  • Explore academic vocabulary and dictionary skills.
  • Investigate the meaning of 'cautious language' in academic essays and incorporate it into your own.
  • Explore the structure of texts, paragraphs and essays.
  • Demonstrate your learning by producing your own academic essay as your assignment.
  • Collaborate effectively with others to achieve a shared outcome.

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for students who want to study in English at university. We recommend an existing English language level of IELTS 5.5.

Who will you learn with?

Charlotte Mason

I began my English teaching career in China 14 years ago. On my return to the UK I completed my MA TESOL and have since then specialised in teaching EAP as well as writing course materials.

Anna Calvi

OU associate lecturer and materials writer. I have written materials on business communication, Academic English and Italian.

Who developed the course?

The Open University (OU) is the largest academic institution in the UK and a world leader in flexible distance learning, with a mission to be open to people, places, methods and ideas.

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What's included?

  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you're eligible
  • Download and print your Certificate of Achievement anytime