4.6 SELF-REFLECTION: What Are Your Strengths and Weaknesses in Writing an Academic Research Essay in English?

In order to become a better writer, it’s useful to stop and consider your current abilities. What do you already know and do well? What do you still need to learn or improve? First, read the list of academic writing skills below. Think about the feedback that you have received from your instructor. Then write two paragraphs that answer these next two questions (write one paragraph for each question):

  • What are your strengths in writing an academic research essay in English? 
  • What are your weaknesses in writing an academic research essay in English?

ACADEMIC Writing Skills

  • Getting ideas, planning, and organizing my essay
  • Writing thesis statements for an essay
  • Writing effective introduction and conclusion paragraphs
  • Developing and supporting my ideas with good examples and complex sentences
  • Organizing my ideas logically into strong paragraphs
  • Using grammar correctly (verb tenses, subject-verb agreement, etc.)
  • Using vocabulary correctly (including spelling)
  • Using MLA format to cite information that I use from other sources
  • Identifying and evaluating secondary sources of information to support my own ideas or opinions
  • Summarizing and paraphrasing information from other sources
  • Editing and proofreading, finding and correcting mistakes



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