Genres in academic writing: Exercises

Questions/Assignment Briefs/Rubric

Before you start writing, it is important to consider the broad purpose of your writing. The assignment question or rubric can often help you with this task.

Once you have chosen the primary purpose of your writing, you can narrow that down to the genre family required.

Primary Purpose

Genre Family

Demonstrating Knowledge & Understanding


Developing Powers of Independent Reasoning


Building Research Skills

Literature Surveys
Methodology Recounts
Research Reports

Preparing for Professional Practice

Case Studies
Design Specifications
Problem Questions

Writing for Oneself and Others

Event Recounts
Public Engagement

Market Research Methods

1. Explain the purposes of advertising research with reference to an example with which you are familiar.

Market Research Methods

2. Explain how the effectiveness of advertising can be assessed.

Market Research Methods

3. Describe how you would select an appropriate sample to assess the impact of television advertising for toys for children aged 5 – 10 over the Christmas period (late November – December)

Hospitailty, Leisure & Tourism Management

4. On the 26th August, Bank holiday Monday, Mr. Lars Hanson has arranged to host a party to celebrate his 25th wedding anniversary. The location is at his riverside house with the marquee erected on the lawn next to the river. He requires a three course luncheon with wine starting at 1pm. The guests will arrive from 11.30am and will leave around 3.30pm. He has contacted Peacock Catering and asked for a quote for the day including the following:

  • Hot canapés and drinks on arrival
  • A three course lunch menu including wine list
  • A selection of drinks including water and wine that will be available all day
  • The cutting and distribution of the wedding cake along with champagne for the speeches
  • A recommended table plan for the day
  • A list of all the china, glassware and equipment required for the day
  • The wording for the menu and wine list

Food Sciences

5. Donna Spencer is a journalist and wants to write an article on obesity for a newspaper. She has the following questions:

  • Scientists are constantly saying that levels of obesity are increasing. What is the reason for this increase?

Accounting & Finance

6. Using the accounts for Marks and Spencer plc and other information researched by you, write a report recommending whether or not to invest in Marks and Spencer plc.


7. Explore the role of the small business sector in the UK economy and in your own country.


8. What is the position of the UK Government on restrictive trade practices and how has recent legislation helped to achieve its aims?


9. What are the main causes of the recent credit crisis and what measures have governments been adopting to try to solve the problems caused by it?


10. What is the regional problem, and how has government policy attempted to alleviate this problem?


11. How successful have international institutions been in promoting and achieving free trade?


12. Discuss the relative merits of different exchange rate regimes and explain why your own country has chosen the regime it has.

Business Strategy

13. Analyse the strategies used by the Apple Corporation to build and sustain competitive advantage. What are the strategic issues and options currently facing the organisation?


14. Critically consider the "Method od Doubt" as a means of beginning philosophy.


15. Outline and analyse the problems confronting Medical Supplies Limited and offer recommendations for their resolution.

Computer Science

16. Create an application which gives the user the ability to open and display an image, and to change the background colour of the form.


17. For this assignment you should construct a model which demonstrates changes in woodland structure over time with an attention to the understory vegetation cover and factors affecting the rate of increase on the field and ground layer vegetation in order to take account of those factors in planning of woodland management.


18. Describe the patterns of distribution of the allophones of /r/, and the allophones of /l/, based on the data provided. What can you say about /r/ in syllable final position?


19. Meltese and Leponese have identical phonetic inventories, but different phonological inventories. Give the phonetic inventory the two languages share, and then the phonological vowel inventory for each language. Indicate the line of reasoning which led to your answer.


20. Write a literature review of between 1500-2000 words. You can choose any topic, but are strongly encouraged to review the literature relating to your thesis topic (if you have decided on one) or another area that you think you will work on in future.


21. Conduct a brief literature review on a topic of interest related to business, information systems, social issues, etc.

Language Teaching

22. Write a critical evaluation of a topic relevant to the field of English Language Teaching in the form of a literature review.

Language Teaching

23. The dissertation will require students to identify a significant problem in the teaching of English in a particular part of the world, to examine some background issues and carry out appropriate research, including data collection and analysis. The results of the research will inform a well-founded dissertation of 15,000 – 20,000 words.


24. Your assignment requires a weekly blog site in the group site on Blackboard. Your blog should not be on the weekly teaching schedule but your personal experience, learning journey, including both positive and negative experiences and what actions should be taken to the future as development.


25. Write not more than 1000 words to describe your research methodology, i.e., what approach you took to carry out your project. It should give answers to the following questions:

  • Was your research exploratory, descriptive or explanatory and why?
  • Was your research qualitative or quantitative in nature and why?
  • What approach and techniques did you use to carry out your project (e.g., action research, case study, survey, data collection methods), and why?


26. Your third writing assignment is to write the Methods section of the class experiment using APA format. Specifically, this section should include the following: Who participated? How were they recruited? How were they assigned to condition? What did they do? Include the IVs and IVMs, the DVs and DVMs.


27. The assignment is due on Thursday, May 10, the last day of the examination period. It should be written in APA style, and it should include an abstract, an introduction with literature review and hypotheses, a method section describing methods and procedures in detail, a brief consideration of data analyses, and a discussion section that examines reliability, validity, reactive effects, ethical issues, etc.


28. Laura, a 19 year old law student, went to the Rotten Row Bus Station to catch a coach home to Sweet Valley. She had made this journey from time to time in the past. Above the ticket-office window of the Slowe and Wheezy Bus Company was a sign which stated that all tickets were issued subject to conditions displayed inside the coaches. Laura purchased a ticket which made no reference to any conditions. While boarding the coach the driver carelessly knocked Laura’s very expensive ‘up to the minute’ mobile phone from her hand and broke it. One of the terms displayed inside the coach was as follows:

Passengers travel with goods at their own risk. Neither the company nor its servants accept any liability for damage or loss to passengers’ goods. The company’s servants are parties to this contract.

Advise Laura. In your advice state the effects of relevant case law and statutes.