Sussex Centre for Language Studies

In-sessional academic development workshops

The workshops focus on academic and English language skills and include subjects such as note-taking, summarising and paraphrasing, essay writing, paragraphing, referencing, introductions and conclusions and advanced language skills.

Each workshop lasts two hours (unless otherwise stated), repeated several times throughout a week. The workshops are not interlinked so you can come to as few or as many as you like. Please note that only students with English as an additional language are eligible to attend these workshops.

Booking opens in Week 1 of term. To book these workshops please log in to Sussex Direct: under your Personal menu, select Training Courses then the option Training Courses Booking Facility. Under Academic Development: Study skills you will find a list of the workshops by topic - pick a date/time that suits you and click the 'Book Now!' button.

Week 4: Academic Practice: The Process of Essay Writing

  • This introductory workshop will cover many aspects of essay writing, first addressing the question: What is an essay? We will then look briefly at planning an essay, writing introductions and conclusions.

Week 5: Academic Practice: Seminars and Presentations

  • Giving presentations and participating in seminars are core academic skills. This workshop is divided into three sections: Part one will be a discussion about the 'rules of the game' in a seminar. Part two will look at techniques to help you fully participate in seminars; and part three will look at techniques for giving effective presentations.

Week 6: Academic Grammar: Articles and Prepositions

  • The grammar errors which occur in academic writing may be different to errors in general English. This workshop is based on some problems with articles and prepositions in academic writing. As well as reviewing the grammar rules, techniques for improving your own language accuracy will be discussed.

Week 7: Academic Practice: Reading Critically and Taking Effective Notes

  • This workshop will introduce good reading techniques and evaluate how and why notes are taken. Learning to read critically and to make effective notes is the base on which all academic study is built. Developing these skills will have an impact on your ability to participate in seminars and discussions, write essays and reports and perform to your best ability in exams.

Week 8: Academic Grammar: Verb tenses; the passive voice and impersonal forms; avoiding vague language.

  • This workshop is based on language issues which frequently occur in academic writing. It reviews tense use and demonstrates how avoiding the use of vague terms can result in clearer communication and stronger author voice.

Week 9:  Academic Grammar: Nominalisation

  • In academic writing there are certain grammar features which are characteristic of academic style; one of these is the use of noun forms in preference to verb forms. This is nominalisation. This workshop will show you how to incorporate this into your own academic writing.

Week 10: Academic Grammar: Signalling Nouns and Reference Words

  • This workshop covers one of the most important aspects of academic grammar/language. The correct use of both signalling nouns and reference words helps the writer to guide the reader through the paper in a clear and logical manner.

Week 11: Academic Practice: Proofreading, Editing and Creating Concise Writing

  • Good academic writing, as with all writing, takes time to develop and requires both practice and re-writing. This workshop will introduce techniques to help you proofread and edit your own work. You will learn how to identify some unnecessary words and phrases, and, by removing these, to make your writing more concise.

In conjunction with the Library, we are also offering an Effective Literature Searching workshop:

  • This practical workshop will help to develop your research skills, including improving your search strategy, carrying out searches using online databases, locating full text journal articles and tools for keeping up to date with research.


Please note: These are not the Academic Practice Workshops for referred students.