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Academic writing

 
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Ranchers

I have never studied for higher education (degree etc.) but I start a Masters (MSc) next month.

The trouble I have is that everything I have ever written has been business oriented - I have never written an academic paper, I know nothing about referencing, layout, structure etc.

I know producing the content is not going to be an issue what I will be struggling with is understanding how to go about structuring papers.

I don't want to think about the 60,000 word dissertation next year

There are thousands of links on the web to different resources, books, sites, tutorials etc. so I can't see the wood for the trees.

I am sure a lot of people here are currently studying, or have studied at higher education levels so does anyone have any advice, or resources that they use(d) for learning how to produce an acceptable academic assignment?

Thanks
[ August 11, 2005: Message edited by: Rick Beaver ]
 
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I have never studied for higher education (degree etc.) but I start a Masters (MSc) next month.




Do you mean to say to don�t have graduation degree and you have started MSc?

If, YES, then it is very surprising, in India, you can join any master degree course only if you have graduation degree at first place.
 
Rick Beaver
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With relevant industry experience an undergraduate degree is not required to study at higher levels here.
 
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Hi Rick,

Take a look at Olin Shivers dissertation advices. The book
he recommends (A Handbook for Scholars) might be old (as far as I recall
it's from the 70'ies) but it's non the less good.

Another place to look is Oliver Danvy's site.
His slides are from two presentations he's made at the dept. of CS, at the
University of Aarhus.

/Svend Rost
 
Rick Beaver
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Thankyou Svend
 
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One requirement for writing an academic paper(I mean scientific paper) is learning Tex or LateX. When you prepare you dissertation, keep away from hopeless MS Word or StarOffice. They create more problem than they solve. Install a copy of Latex(www.miktex.org) and format your dissertation using it.
The result looks professional and beautiful.
 
Rick Beaver
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Originally posted by Ramesh Choudhary:
One requirement for writing an academic paper(I mean scientific paper) is learning Tex or LateX. When you prepare you dissertation, keep away from hopeless MS Word or StarOffice. They create more problem than they solve. Install a copy of Latex(www.miktex.org) and format your dissertation using it.
The result looks professional and beautiful.



That is interesting - what is the benefit of using Latex? Is it just good for displaying mathematical formulae?
 
Ramesh Choudhary
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There are many advantages, one is that you would not have to care about pesky margins, side headings, font changing etc.,.You can exclusively concentrate on the content.

Downside is that you have to spend one week in learning that. Prior knowledge of mark up languages will greatly help. Downside being that you have to remember many commands.Recommended book is

"LATEX: A Document Preparation system" by Leslie lamport.

BTW go for Latex.Latex is many times simple when compared to Tex.

You can download a copy of Latex(for Windows Platform) at www.miktex.org.

Moreover , formatting with Latex is considered 'cool' when compared to
MS Word(which is too simple but inefficient for a academic's comfort)
 
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When you prepare you dissertation, keep away from hopeless MS Word or StarOffice.

Check with your institution first though. Many institutions require your thesis to be in a specific data format for printing. If they do require a specific format, they should be able to supply you with both a version of the software as well as instructions for page formatting.

By the way, where are you that industry experience was a good substitute for a bachelor's degree? I agree with it totally, but have never heard of it before.
 
Rick Beaver
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I am in the UK.
[ August 11, 2005: Message edited by: Rick Beaver ]
 
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