Courses Catalogue

Scholarly Writing And Communication Skills

COURSE CODE: CCC9104
COURSE CREDIT UNIT: 3
ACADEMIC PROGRAMME: Environmental Science, PhD
COLLEGE/SCHOOL/FACULTY: School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
STATUS: Core
PROGRAMME TYPE: Postgraduate

Course Description

The course unit is designed to provide PhD students with the knowledge and practical skills in academic writing and dissemination in form of journal papers, dissertations/thesis, books and book chapters among others. The course, therefore, introduces students to key aspects in academic writing, the publishing process – selecting titles, choosing the message and market, drafting, reviewing and editing. This includes, logical argumentation (descriptive or analytic), referencing styles, data presentation of data.

COURSE JUSTIFICATION/RATIONALE

This course prepares the student for the scholarly work necessary for the doctoral program; it also introduces the student to a kind of writing and thinking that will enable him/her to become a reflective and critical thinker able to enter intellectual conversations inside and outside the academic world.

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

By the end of this course, the student should be able to:

  • Distinguish different types of research, their audiences and how research material might be effectively presented
  • Prepare scientific and technical papers, and presentations.
  • Format documents and presentations to optimize their visual appeal when viewed in-press, as a podcast or audio/video file format on the internet, or through personal presentations to an audience
  • Effectively use features of Microsoft Office to create eye-catching professional documents and presentations.
  • Effectively use features of Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel to create professional looking tables, graphs and figures.
  • Accept constructive criticism and use reviewers’ comments to improve quality and clarity of written reports and presentations.

LEARNING OUTCOMES
A doctoral students student completing the course is expected to:

  • Demonstrate understanding of writing as a series of tasks, including finding, evaluating, analyzing, and synthesizing appropriate sources, and as a process that involves composing, editing, and revising.
  • Demonstrate critical reading and analytical skills, including understanding an argument's major assertions and assumptions, and how to evaluate its supporting evidence.
  • Demonstrate facility with the fundamentals of persuasion, especially as they are adapted to a variety of special situations and audiences in academic writing.
  • Demonstrate research skills, integrate your own ideas with those of others, and apply the conventions of attribution and citation correctly.
  • Use Standard Written English and revise and edit your own writing for appropriateness. You will take responsibility for such features as format, syntax, grammar, punctuation, and spelling.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the connection between writing and thinking and use writing and reading for inquiry, learning, thinking, and communicating in an academic setting.
  • Conduct a literature review and critique a scientific publication
  • Use a referencing software
  • Write a scientific manuscript that conforms to the rules and requirements
  • Analyse their presentation efficiency and improve it in their written work
  • Deal with scientific editors, and others involved in the scientific publishing process
  • Prepare and present effective oral presentations and posters
  • Prepare a scientific project proposal