University Writing

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Below are resources that University Writing has developed to support students and instructors across the disciplines in their writing and writing instruction. We define writing broadly, so you will find resources on ePortfolios, visual design, professional communication, and presentations in addition to traditional writing tasks like reflective writing, literature reviews, peer review, and editing and proofing.

Please use the keywords on the right-hand side of the page or the search bar above to navigate these resources. If you would like to use these resources in your course, please follow the Creative Commons information located at the bottom of each resource. If you plan to use the source in its original format, we ask that you leave the University Writing branding intact.

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Tagged Entries: Large Project

A Storyteller’s Guide to Creative Writing

Taking on a creative work can be daunting. Whether you are gearing up for NaNoWriMo or looking for year-round support, these resources will help you work through the writing process for endeavors such as novels, novellas, and short stories. Specifically, these documents are useful for brainstorming, drafting, and organizing ideas for premise, plot, point of view, characters, worldbuilding, and dialogue. You will also learn scene blocking techniques and tips for finishing and revising your first draft.  

Materials designed by Autumn Frederick and Heesun Yoon 

This worksheet introduces you to premise, provides a breakdown of premise components, and helps you draft your own premise

This worksheet reviews two types of story structure: the Three Act Structure and Freytag’s Pyramid. Space is provided to help you map your story out in both structures to decide which best fits your writing style

This worksheet discusses five points of view found in creative writing, notes tips for helping writers select a point of view, provides resources for writing and reading for diversity, lists questions to consider for character creation, and provides fillable character profiles

This worksheet provides planning resources, an overview and list of decisions, and activity for delving into worldbuilding

This handout breaks down tips for improving your descriptive writing and provides examples and explanations for each suggestion

This brief handout provides an explanation of what dialogue is and how it is formatted and provides space for practice

This brief worksheet defines scene blocking and provides an activity for practice

This brief handout lists good habits for finishing your project and outlines tips and resources to aid you in revising your first draft

Literature Review

A literature review is an evaluation of the available literature on a given subject. In literature reviews, you are synthesizing and analyzing research to tell a story about the work done about a topic and how it relates to present and future research. Use the resources below for guidance as your write your literature review. 

Materials designed by Katharine Brown, Autumn Frederick, and Layli Miron 

This worksheet helps you begin identifying scholarly conversations by analyzing an example literature review 

This worksheet helps you analyze an example literature review to identify the storytelling elements being used  

This worksheet parallels the moves a writer makes when creating a literature review with Freytag’s pyramid. It guides writers in outlining their own literature reviews by answering a series of brainstorming questions

Managing Large Projects

Large writing projects, such as dissertations, theses, and research papers, can be daunting. Use these resources to assist you with organizational and time management strategies needed to finish your project. Be sure to see our resources on The Writing Process as you engage in this work.  

Materials designed by G. Travis Adams, Katharine Brown, Amy Cicchino, Megan Haskins, Annie Small, and James Truman 

This handout provides strategies for approaching large writing projects 

This worksheet has tips and reflective questions to help you begin a large writing project 

This worksheet introduces you to and helps you begin creating writing goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. 

This handout offers you strategies to developing a regular writing routine 

This handout shares strategies for tracking your writing progress, like wordcount trackers, accountability logs, and goal planning 

This worksheet can be used to create a weekly writing schedule 

This handout invites writers to reflect on their academic identity, celebrate writing successes, and plan their next steps in their large writing project

This brief writing prompt helps writers plan how to use their time productively in a writing session

This worksheet provides two brief writing prompts to use as a warm-up as well as recognize and celebrate moments of growth in writing skills

This writing warm-up encourages writers to affirm their readiness for writing through identifying the strengths they bring to the project

This writing warm-up invites writers to reflect on a semester's worth of writing and recognize moments of growth

Research Abstracts

One type of academic writing is research abstracts, which are important distillations of academic research. In many fields, they are used as conference proposals, and they appear in journal articles to help readers understand the research and decide if they want to read further. Use these materials to better understand research abstracts and begin creating your own research abstracts. 

Materials designed by Christopher Basgier, Layli Miron, and Megan Moeller

This handout introduces you to abstracts, or the summaries that typically begin a kind of research writing 

This resource was designed to introduce readers to abstracts within the College of Human Sciences, in fields such as Nutrition, Hospitality Management, Consumer and Design Sciences, Human Development and Family Science, and Global Education 

This worksheet will help you analyze example abstracts from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds 

This worksheet features four abstracts accepted into Auburn’s 2018 Research Symposium, which you can analyze to identify the six components of an abstract 

Theses and Dissertations

There is no one “right” way to organize a thesis or dissertation, which is part of what makes writing one challenging. Use these resources to help guide you as you make decisions regarding organization structure and argument development for your thesis or dissertation. To learn more about formatting your thesis or dissertation, contact the Graduate School. Also check out our section on research writing. 

Materials designed by G.Travis Adams

This brief handout explains the different parts of a thesis or dissertation