Doctoral Advanced Writing
30% COMPLETE
30% COMPLETE
30% COMPLETE
30% COMPLETE
Doctoral Advanced Writing
30% COMPLETE
30% COMPLETE

Word Choice and Tone

In academic writing, we use language and word choice to convey meaning and tone. The phrase dealing with a problem is a more casual tone than managing or addressing a problem might convey. Academic writers should use formal tone and choose explicit language to convey meaning. For example, instead of writing TV say television. Instead of writing kids, write children. Instead of writing hanging out, write gathering or meeting. Academic writers should also avoid using slang or colloquial expressions (clichés) such as bridging the gap, a dime a dozen, etc. Instead, academic writers should use more explicit language.

Dealing with

TV

Kids

Hanging out

Bridging the gap

Managing or addressing

Television

Children

Gathering or meeting

Reconciling or conciliating

Tentative Versus Absolute Language

Academic writers should use tentative not absolute language. Tentative language suggests possibilities and allows readers to formulate their own conclusions. Because dissertation research does not prove outcomes or provide definitive answers to research questions, dissertation writers should use tentative language.

Students who pass DOC/700 will earn their doctorates.

The results of the study will help hospital leaders improve patient care.

The data proves that men are more effective leaders than women.

Students who pass DOC/700 will likely earn their doctorates.

The results of the study could help hospital leaders improve patient care.

The results of the study could help hospital leaders improve patient care.

Anthropomorphism

Writers sometimes inadvertently attribute human characteristics or human action to animals, inanimate objects, or concepts. Attributing human characteristics to animals or inanimate objects is called anthropomorphism. The following are examples of using anthropomorphisms.

Anthropomorphism: Leadership theories that involve employees in decision-making are the most effective for motivating employees


Correction: Leaders who involve employees in decision-making are the most effective for motivating employees


Explanation: Leadership theories are inanimate concepts that cannot involve employees in decision-making; only leaders can involve employees in decision-making

Anthropomorphism: Failing grades must be repeated


Correction: Students who earn failing grades must repeat the course


Explanation: Failing grades are inanimate concepts and cannot repeat anything

Doctoral Writing Style Notebook

Play the Doctoral Writing Style Notebook tutorial.