Online writing resources

Online writing resources

Many online resources for essay writing are in the USA because colleges and universities have been helping students improve their writing skills a lot longer than anywhere else. Of course, standard caveats about different spelling and rhetoric conventions apply when using material from US sites. However, don’t forget to visit your institution’s and your department’s own websites!

Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab
http://owl.english.purdue.edu/

Like many of the best US sites this is aimed at both students and tutors. It’s impossible to list all the things you’ll find at Purdue but online resources include: printer-friendly handouts on writing concerns; PowerPoint presentations on writing skills, grammar, spelling and punctuation; and links to other online writing resources.

The English Style Book: A Guide to the Writing of Scholarly English
http://www.litencyc.com/StyleBook/StyleBook.php

Robert Clarke, a professor at UEA, has written his own guide to academic writing. Some may find the scholarly style a bit off-putting, but it’s full of good features and well worth a visit.

Birmingham City University: Study Guides
http://library.bcu.ac.uk/learner/Guide Index.htm

This site provides easy to follow guides across a range of topics in writing, study skills and grammar. It is written specifically for UK undergraduates.

The Uvic Writer’s Guide
http://web.uvic.ca/wguide/Pages/MasterToc.html

This is a wide-ranging Canadian site and if you want quick accessible answers on the difference between expository and persuasive writing or advice on how to structure a paragraph then it’s a good place to start.

University of Bradford School of Management
http://www.brad.ac.uk/management/els/elsbooklets/

Scroll down the page to the Writing Assignments section – here you can download guides to various aspects of the essay writing process. The page also contains guides to other study-related topics.

Academic Writing
http://www.wisc.edu/writing/Handbook/ReviewofLiterature.html

Another wide-ranging American site, full of useful tips and definitions.