This course looks at the use of 'big data' to help graduate students with their academic writing. This 10-hour course (5 hrs content, 5hrs activities) trains students in the use of language corpora, or multi-million word collections of academic writing from the British Academic Written English corpus. 

We focus on how corpora will replace your dictionary or translation website, and full training in how to extract, understand and use corpus output data. The course then explores how to solve vocabulary errors with corpora, followed by grammatical errors. Finally, you will compare language features across the Sciences and the Arts, so that you can be sure the words and phrases you are using are correct for your discipline. This is a great opportunity to get feedback on your work and learn how to use a new approach to developing your academic writing capability.    

This is a trial course and will be available from 1 July to 30 September 2018. You will have an opportunity to submit some short samples of your writing (perhaps your draft confirmation report, or a conference abstract / literature review you are working on). This work is then ‘marked’ (not graded) for errors and you will then use the corpus software to fix the errors. It's that simple! 

The course is available through the edX Edge platform from 1 July 2018.   Follow these instructions to register:

  1. Go to this link.
  2. Click on the Register button.
  3. You will be taken to the About this Course page.
  4. Click on Enrol in SLATx.  This will take you to a Create an Account page.
  5. If you already have an edX account you can sign in.
  6. If you do not have an edX account, click on the small bar Use my institution/Campus credentials.
  7. Select University of Queensland.
  8. Use student credentials at single sign on and login.
  9. Complete any additional information required to begin the course.

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About Writing skills

The ability to write well is critical to success in your research degree and a ‘top 10’ skill sought by employers. Learning the strategies for good writing will help you write efficiently.  Knowing not only what to write, but how to write it for a particular audience, will help you communicate your research effectively.

Useful links