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Decoding the Question (Definitions)
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Argument
This is the most common form of writing that will be expected of you in college.

Effective Academic Writing: The Argument
http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/argument.html
Provides a basic definition of argumentation and describes in detail the processes of argumentation.

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Summary

Your summary gives an overview of some idea, discussion or events that you have read about. Sometimes professors may specifically ask for a summary as a part of a writing assignment, or as an assignment itself, such as in an essay exam. The following link should be helpful in distinguishing types of summaries.

Summarizing
http://www.usca.sc.edu/writingroom/hos/Summarizing.html

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Brainstorming & Clustering
These links are helpful in showing exactly why brainstorming is so important, providing ideas for ways to brainstorm, and how to organize ideas into successful papers once they have been written down.

Regis University Academic Resources
http://www.regis.edu/regis.asp?sctn_ars&p1=wp
Includes MLA, APA, Writing and Brainstorming

Prewriting: Clustering
http://writing.richmond.edu:16080/writing/wweb/cluster.html
Describes the clustering method and gives a visual example of a cluster. Also links to another page on general brainstorming methods.

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The Outline
An understanding of outlines is directly related to everything important in a major writing assignment, from the thesis statement to the structure of every paragraph. These links show the different ways to construct an outline and how an outline helps give structure to your writing.

Organize Your Ideas: Outline
http://members.aol.com/lklivngstn/essay/outline.html
Takes writers through a step-by-step method for writing an outline, distinguishing between different outlines for different kinds of writing assignments.

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Introductions and Conclusions
These links provide very helpful, easy-to-remember tips for writing introductory paragraphs and conclusions, as well as providing examples of both the good and the bad.

The Writing Center Guide to Introductions, Conclusions and Titles
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/introcon.html
Provides brief, easy to remember information and will prove helpful in any writing assignments.

Conclusions
http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/conclusions.html
Goes into detail about the function of conclusions, gives examples, and provides extremely valuable strategies for writing conclusions.

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The Thesis
A thesis is the central idea, or argument, in a paper. The sentence in which you, the writer, tell the reader the purpose of your paper is called the thesis statement. These links closely examine this important part of the writing process, as well as give examples of strong and weak theses.

Constructing Thesis Statements
http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/thesis.html
Explains how to understand what college professors consider to be a valid thesis and outlines the process of constructing a thesis with examples.

Some Sample Thesis Statements: the good, the bad, and the misguided
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/g_b_thes.html
Consists of example thesis statements, beginning with weak ones and then improved versions. An excellent site for writers who know what a thesis is but have difficulty with wording it the best ways.

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The Paragraph
An understanding of paragraph structure in a paper makes an enormous, lasting difference in writing technique and saves you time during the revision process.


The Path to Good Paragraph Development

http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/paragraphs.html

Developing Coherent Paragraphs
http://www.utoronto.ca/writing/parag.html

Writing Effective Transitions
http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/transitions.html

Transition Words & Phrases
http://www-english.tamu.edu/wcenter/handouts/transition.html

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Revision, Editing & Polishing
The revision process can involve many high-level concerns. Ultimately, this process decides the success of a final assignment.

The Writing Center Guide to Editing Papers: Revising for Conciseness
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/gu_edit.html

Polishing & Editing Checklist
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/edit_pol.html

Revision Guidelines
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/revise93.html

You Lost Me in the Third Paragraph: A Guide to Gracious Criticism
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/eiphand.html

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Citation & Paraphrasing
Citation is the process of explaining to the reader where information in the paper comes from, giving credit to the original writers and researchers whose work has been studied.

Citing Sources
http://www-english.tamu.edu/wcenter/handouts/citing.html

Documenting Sources
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/docu.html

Paraphrasing
http://www.usca.sc.edu/writingroom/hos/Paraphrasing.html

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MLA Citation Style
MLA stands for Modern Language Association, and is the most standard style of documentation in the humanities, with the exception of APA style for the social sciences (see APA).

Citing Electronic Sources in MLA Style
http://www-english.tamu.edu/wcenter/owl/citing.html

A Sample Bibliography Page
http://www.gmu.edu/departments/writingcenter/handouts/mla.html

Citation and Documentation in the Humanities: MLA Format
http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/mla.html

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APA Citation Style
APA stands for American Psychological Association and differs slightly from the MLA style of documentation. This style of citation is most often used when writing for the social sciences.

Electronic Reference Formats Recommended by the American Psychological Association
http://www.apastyle.org/elecref.html

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Other Links of Interest

GMU Honor Code
http://www.gmu.edu/catalog/acadpol.html#honor

Policies
http://www.gmu/mlstudents/handbook/acapolicies

GMU Writing Center Links
http://writingcenter.gmu.edu

http://wac.gmu.edu

http://wac.gmu.edu/guides/gmu%20guides.html

The Western Civilization CD-ROM
http://www.historypictures.com (800-922-1711)

Western Civilization Website
http://chnm.gmu.edu/courses/westernciv/index.htm

Bowden College Writing Center Link
http://academic.bowdoin.edu/WritingGuides/

The University College of the Cariboo - writing yourself into the discipline
http://ww.cariboo.bc.cs/disciplines/index.htm

University of Calgary – Writing help in history
http://his.ucalgary.CA/

Reading, writing and research for history
http://chnm.gmu.edu/courses/masur/f2001/his389/schedule%changes.htm

Using Gender-Sensitive Language
http://www.unc.edu/depts/wcweb/handouts/gender.html

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