In addition to our professional services, we've developed resources to help you take the next step with your writing! Read them by category, or scroll down to see all our resources below.

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Writers’ Exchange “Ask the Editor”: ORCID

What is my ORCID Number?  ORCID Scholar Number:     AU doctoral students are required to include their ORCID number on the title page of their dissertation. Doing so, will ensure that the dissertation and your identity are protected and acknowledged. Similar to periodicals having individual DOIs, the ORCID number becomes [...]

On Writing Dissertations

From the Director’s Desk: Writing a dissertation is a daunting enterprise: it’s the most in-depth researching and writing enterprise of your academic program.  Its chapters & their purposes can be unfamiliar and the pressure to “validate” can be enormous. It can also intimidate just by its “book-sized” length. Each of [...]

Tips for Writing a Literature Review

What is a Literature Review? The Literature Review overviews, analyzes, and sometimes critiques relevant previous research. It lays the groundwork for the original research presented in a thesis/dissertation by demonstrating that the research fills a “gap” in the literature and/or contributes something new or has implications for specific areas of [...]

Tips for Dissertation Introductions

The introduction informs your audience about the importance of your topic, the research question(s) you plan to investigate, and your hypothesis or core claim (thesis statement).  It also outlines the structure of the rest of the dissertation, through a chapter overview.   Write Literature Reviews First (Before the Introduction) You [...]

AU Dissertation Front Page Templates

Antioch Dissertation Writers may find it difficult and frustrating to correct the format of a dissertation according to AU guidelines, especially if the document is already written. WEX is here to help! Below you'll find a downloadable template file for the AU Front Pages, allowing you to just fill in [...]

Get Cozy With A Book

While deep in the dissertation process, it can be very helpful to have  “friendly” books nearby that help ignite awareness of "writer within." While some dissertation writers feel they need to quarantine themselves from any other lived experience, the reality is that reading for pleasure can profoundly mitigate the oppressive [...]

Specific Guidelines for Enhanced Readability

State your purpose explicitly. Make your issue very clear. Make the topic of each section and paragraph visually prominent. Use headings and subheadings appropriately and correctly Place topic sentences in the beginning of paragraphs Maintain the topic in the reader’s mind by referring to it frequently Readers (especially with [...]

WEX Editors on Common Errors Seen in Dissertations

WEX Editors on Common Errors Seen in Dissertations We’ve asked the WEX editors about the common APA errors they’re seeing in dissertations and have created this list in the hopes writers might have an advantage in self-editing their dissertations.[1]  Here we go: Table of Contents: Inconsistent wording from the heading [...]

Writing For A Reader

One distinction between student writers and professional writers is how the writer regards and relates to the reader. In Composition field, there’s been considerable exploration about “reader-based” vs “writer-based prose.” Here, researchers[1] have identified “writer-based prose” as work in which the writer focuses on themselves as learners and readers of [...]

Does Proofreading Really Matter?

We’ve spent much time talking about editing, and now it’s proofreading time to take the front stage.  We’ve all had the experience of reading a professional text and noticing a typo. The immediate response is typically one any writer would prefer to avoid as there’s nothing like losing a reader’s [...]

Proofreading Checklist

Proofreading Checklist So many of us focus our writing time on the composing process and forget that the final product deserves a finishing touch. Don't neglect this final polish that all writing requires if it's going to be read by another person.  If you're independent and feel capable, go ahead [...]

Self-Editing for Content

Have you been told that your writing lacks direction or unity? If so, the following list of questions might help you edit for content. Focus on one or two areas below and revise for style and meaning.  Subject, Purpose, Audience What's the most important thing I want to say about [...]

Writing Abstracts

As researchers, doctoral students have already relied on abstracts to glean the relevance of an article. In the same way, the doctoral abstract is the general overview of the dissertation  proposal and the subsequent dissertation manuscript. The abstract has a distinct purpose to highlight the major points/issues of the research [...]

Where’s the Consistency?  

Director’s Desk: Where’s the Consistency?   When Academic Program Handbooks and the APA Manual Disagree You’ve made it this far with APA and for the most part the manual has been consistent in presenting definitive style and format rules. Once you get to the dissertation, however, the APA manual seems [...]

Cracking the Cover Letter

Cover letters are a part of job, internship, and practicum applications that always tripped me up.  As soon as I saw the words “cover letter”, I felt stuck because I didn’t know where to begin.  Unfortunately, as a graduate student, cover letters are an unavoidable part of my life.  Many [...]

Rules with Academic Degrees

WEX has had a few questions in the past couple of months regarding ways of acknowledging academic degrees in our writing, and we hope this posting would help clarify the rules.   Capitalization: In the academy we might feel compelled to capitalize all our degrees as well as subject areas. [...]

Nurturing Creativity

Perhaps one of the most challenging and time consuming stages of my writing process is finding out what I want to write. Finding an idea—a good idea is essential. I have often tormented myself sitting down across from a blank screen. However, this is not where my ideas generate. I [...]

Dash Away!

Have you ever wondered what all the commotion was between hyphens and dashes? If you're writing for publication (esp in APA), you might have been given feedback from a reader or an editor about the Em Dash vs the En Dash. It might seem fussy detail, but there is a [...]

Proofreading Made Easier

Proofreading your own writing can be a difficult enterprise. You’ve read the material so many times that your eye doesn’t catch what can be glaring to an outside reader. Errors or typos are too quickly lost to your own field of vision. After all the hard work of conceptualizing, researching, [...]

Revising for Clarity and Precision: The Paramedic Method

Perhaps you’ve been told that your writing is wordy or that your heavy phrasing confuses your reader. Most writers face this problem of “overwriting.”  However, clear sentences are integral to clarity and facilitating your reader’s understanding. To ensure greater readability, try using the Paramedic Method described here. The “Paramedic Method” [...]

Homophones Explained

Homophones are words that sound the same but are spelled differently. For many writers, homophones are the number one reason for misspelled words. It’s not necessarily that we don’t know how to spell a certain word, it’s that we fell into the auditory trap of using another word that sounds [...]

Beyond Rules

I recently went through a box of ephemera from high school, including old essays. Each one I read started with a dictionary definition. According to Merriam-Webster, rigid (adj.) means inflexibly set in opinion, or strictly observed. I think an English teacher told me that one possible way to start an [...]

The Tension with Tenses

I’ve found that when working with ESL students, the most challenging thing for me has been explaining verb tenses. Now, as a bilingual person, I completely understand how confusing English is. That doesn’t mean I have a clue of how to explain the use of the correct tense though even [...]

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