Every learning institution encourages novelty, clarity and objectivity in academic research. This is usually done to provide students with research writing skills that are necessary for successful completion of their studies. Students are therefore required to undertake self assessments, which introduce them to numerous factors that can promote strong and well structured writings.
Such activities are vital in helping students refine their arguments and writing at large. In addition, it helps establish logical writing in students. However, it faces several obstacles. These include among others, academic plagiarism. This has made research quite difficult as scholars try to avoid plagiarizing other people’s works.
Plagiarism cases have risen, especially with increased availability of resources online. In fact, while advancement in technology has pooled resources, it has also led to increased cases of plagiarism. This paper will therefore try to explore academic writing styles, plagiarism, strengths and weaknesses as well as growth plan (Colantuono, 2009, p. 1).
Plagiarism can be defined as use of other people’s ideas, or works as your own. This occurs in any event that an individual uses another person’s idea or written work without giving him/her credit. Most written works in learning institutions are nowadays turned in after passing through plagiarism detecting software. These are aimed at curbing plagiarism, which has been on the rise.
Online degrees have had its advantages, which include among others, providing affordable quality education to learners from different regions. On the other hand, this has had its effects on creativity as plagiarism takes toil. It is quite important to note that plagiarism is a punishable offense both by law and learning institutions.
In learning institutions, plagiarism draws punishments that may range from penalties, suspension, expulsion and even sacking for scholars. Moreover, it can lead to jail term, if not avoided. Academic writing involves use of different formatting and citation styles. These include MLA, APA, Harvard, Chicago, Turabian and Oxford, among others. These styles are usually utilized depending on the type of paper to be written.
For instance, when writing papers on psychology, APA (American Psychological Association) style is usually utilized. Most of these citation styles are usually aimed at avoiding plagiarism as well as structuring academic papers in a formal and cohesive manner (McGraw-Hill Higher Education, 2003, p. 1).
Analysis of Strengths
Some of the strengths I have in academic writing include creativity, which helps to minimize plagiarism. In addition, in situations where I use other people’s works, I usually ensure that they are credited. This helps in avoiding plagiarism. Another strength that I have in writing is my ability to master citation styles. This helps me in formatting academic writing as required.
Academic writing requires people to be relevant as well as clear on given instructions. As much as this is sometimes difficult, I have tried to be relevant in most papers. This helps in ensuring that instructions are followed as given in the papers (Colantuono, 2009, p. 1).
Analysis of Weaknesses
Academic research comes with various obstacles. This includes fear of plagiarism, grammar mistakes, among others. I usually face a few problems in putting my essay together. Other obstacles that I face include level of writing. As much as I do formal writing, there are levels of writing required for each category. These include bachelors, masters and PhD levels.
Moreover, depending on subject to be covered, writing can sometimes get complex. For instance, technical papers are usually more complex than others. In addition, Phd papers are commonly more detailed and complex than those of masters or bachelors. Finally, I am sometimes nervous on spelling and grammar mistakes (Dikel, 2011, p. 1).
Academic writing is very important in learning institutions. This is mainly because it gives the true picture of an individual’s creativity and writing skills, among other attributes. Moreover, it confirms that one is able to conduct research and provide quality writings on them. Having considered both my strengths and weaknesses, it is only reasonable that I work towards improving them.
In this regard, I have made a plan that includes improving in spelling and grammar, among others. Moreover, I plan to ensure that plagiarism becomes the least of my problems. In order to achieve this, I plan to institute regular self assessment tests with regards to citation styles.
This involves going through research centers such as Purdue Owl and Ashford, among others. I also plan to practice more on academic writing, this will enable me improve in levels of writing as well as in formatting and style as required (Colantuono, 2009, p. 1).
Academic writing is instrumental to an individual’s capacity development. Institutions of higher learning ensure that students are well trained on ways of articulating their ideas. This can only be done through academic writing. Self assessment is also important as it helps one to establish the causes and possible solutions to his/her problems in writing.
It is quite imperative to know how to write varieties of academic papers. Throughout the process, I have learned on ways of writing different types of papers, styles as well as plagiarism.
The process also helped me learn how to acknowledge sources that are used. In addition, the process has enabled me use credible sources in my research. I have also learned the importance of writing good papers since instructors use them to evaluate our level of comprehension and analysis (Ashford Writing Center, 2011, p. 1).
Ashford Writing Center. (2011). Research Guides. Web.
Colantuono, F. (2009). Academic Plagiarism. Web.
Dikel, M. (2011). Self- Assessment: The Riley Guide. Web.
McGraw-Hill Higher Education. (2003). Avoiding Plagiarism Tutorial. Web.