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EDUC464 Writing for Publication in the Social Sciences

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Students will be guided through the process of writing a journal article, reporting their own data, ready for submission by the end of the course.

This paper is aimed at providing guidance and feedback through the stages of writing one journal article manuscript that is completed by the end of the course. This practical paper is aimed at postgraduate, doctoral and masters' students, as well as early-career staff.

Note:  This paper is primarily intended for graduates in the social sciences but graduates in the sciences find it relevant too.

Paper title Writing for Publication in the Social Sciences
Paper code EDUC464
Subject Education
EFTS 0.1667
Points 20 points
Teaching period(s) Semester 2 (On campus)
Semester 2 (Distance learning)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,154.90
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $4,801.79

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72 300-level points
Limited to
BA(Hons), PGDipTchg, PGDipArts, MEd, MTchg, MA
This paper is primarily intended for graduates in the social sciences.

If you are a graduate wanting to publish your research, this paper is designed to help you.

Teaching staff
Associate Professor Karen Nairn
Guest lecturers
Paper Structure
  • Introduction - the significance of writing for publication
  • Academic identities
  • Assessing your data - Is it ready for reporting? What's worth reporting? What's your thesis? How do you build your argument?
  • Active verbs, clear characters and grammar for academic writing
  • Different ways of reporting your data - What would it look like if you wrote about it in this way?
  • Productivity and pleasure - Are both possible in writing for publication?
  • Which journal to publish in? Analysis of journals. How to report your research to match the journal. What do I want to say? Who is the audience?
  • Writing strategies (e.g. mini-essays, jumping into middle of writing an article, etc.)
  • Reporting quantitative data
  • Reporting qualitative data
  • Journal editors' advice
  • Workshopping each other's writing - selected sections
  • Writing introductions and conclusions
  • Final stages of readying a manuscript for submission
  • Course reflections
Williams, J. & Bizup, J. (2013). Style: Lessons in clarity and grace (11th edn.). Boston: Longman.
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

By the end of this paper, you will be able to:

  1. Identify key features of clear academic writing and know how to use these features to improve your writing.
  2. Select relevant journals by critically assessing aims and scope and by evaluating the key features of articles published in the journals.
  3. Develop a set of writing criteria for a selected journal and use these to write a journal article ready for submission.
  4. Describe and evaluate your relationship with academic writing.
  5. Compile a range of strategies for maintaining your academic writing practice.

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Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Tuesday 10:00-11:50 27-34, 36-41
Friday 10:00-11:50 28-34, 36-41

Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system