Resources for developing your writing skills

The Elements of Framing an Argument and Writing a Thesis Statement

Discover the three-step process for writing an effective introduction and thesis.

Learn how to structure your thesis.

Techniques on How to Organize Your Paper

Here are a few organizational techniques, and when and how to use them.

Citation Style Guides

APA Style Quick Reference:   http://www.apastyle.org/learn/faqs/index.aspx

Karla Tonella's Guide to Citation Style Guides:  bailiwick.lib.uiowa.edu/journalism/cite.html 

The Online Writing Lab at Purdue:  http://owl.english.purdue.edu/

Grammar and Usage

Here is a list of commonly used prepositional idioms

The University of Chicago Writing Program:  http://writing-program.uchicago.edu/sites/writing-program.uchicago.edu/files/uploads/Grammar%20Resources%20Guide.pdf

Discussion Groups on English grammar, usage, and style:  http://englishforums.com/

Practical advice for writers in technical fields:  http://www.writing.engr.psu.edu/

Tips for Writing Personal Statements

Use the scratch outline before you write and the reverse outline after you have completed your draft.

Engage the reader's senses with concrete words.

Transform information into a personal narrative.

Understate or exaggerate depending upon the seriousness of the topic.

Mind the organization and tone of your statement.

Read an excerpt of a personal essay from former Poet Laureate Joseph Brodsky.

The Writer's Diet

Paste a sample of your writing using this free diagnostic tool, which tells you whether your sentences are "fabby or fit."