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My Transition Into Academic Writing

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In “Writing for an Audience”, Linda Flower discusses the essential point of academic writing: awareness of the reader. She outlines her arguments by giving important evidence about the subject, some which I have acquired in school and some which I have yet to learn in college through this course. On our first English session, the teacher begins introducing new and complex keywords such as: discourse, systematic study, politics of vision and critical thinking.

Taking Flower’s advice by doing a bit of research on the subject before writing, I learned that the reading process requires a systematic and mental analysis (purpose, context, form…) of the text t hand. Keeping in mind what the reader thinks about the subject. Research is an example of some writing skills that are essential for a well-rounded work. Good grammar is another basic technique valued when writing academically. Most students acquire such skills at school.There are several other processes I amassed at IC (International College) sharing the context of academic writing. First of them being to brainstorm ideas before starting with my response. This helped me many times including this first response by allowing me to put forth everything I know or remember about the subject at hand. Second is the physical process to execute while reading. Annotating the text is really important for me in order to visualize the author’s main points.

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However, in college we learned that reading consists of two complimentary processes. The physical process goes hand-in-hand with the critical one. Linda Flower presents new essentials for academic writing. I wasn’t aware of the areas of difference that she puts forth in her writing. I am now responsible of taking into consideration the readers’ needs, attitudes and overall knowledge on what I’m writing about. As an author, I should bridge the gap between me and the reader by defining keywords or by using the politics of vision. Next thing is to be specific and not generalize or use absolutism. Even if the audience does not share the same thoughts about my work and disagree with it, I should aim that they at least take it into consideration: “see things as you see them” (Linda Flower, 1998). Finally, complexifying the analysis by using counter arguments or by questioning some points made by authors when reading their work is a new trait I gained at college. Other authors like L. Lennie Irvin discuss the myths that most students believe about writing.

Some of which I have acquired during my academic years. The myth of the five paragraph essay and the one about the perfect first draft are great examples that I unfortunately picked up on during school. This first response proves I learned to abolish these myths as well the one about never using “I”. What I wrote in high school differs from what I will do in my academic writing in college by engaging in a systematic analysis of the text when reading, using the physical and critical processes of thinking simultaneously. As well as letting go of the myths acquired in high school. And finally gauging the gap between the reader and the writer with the awareness of the knowledge, attitude and needs of the reader.


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