Canadian scholars
Engaging ideas, transforming minds
Engaging ideas, transforming minds
2015 designs for disciplines cvr
Canadian Scholars’ Press
336 pages
6 x 9 inches
December 2015
Print ISBN: 9781551308883
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Crafting a well-written academic paper is often a challenge for college and university students. With this updated edition of Designs for Disciplines, students will learn the ins and outs of academic writing and develop the skills necessary for producing sophisticated research papers across a wide range of subject areas.

The second edition of Designs for Disciplines takes an innovative approach to scholarly writing through its grounding in genre theory, which establishes the importance of context to effective communication. The authors introduce students to the many rhetorical features of academic writing and cover an array of topics including research, documentation, the articulation of a topic, and the drafting of a proposal, while also providing an in-depth examination of how to write strong introductions, core paragraphs, and conclusions.

New to this edition is an expanded discussion on plagiarism, suggestions for compiling a research notebook, and many new examples drawn from both student papers and published articles. The text also follows the progress of a first-year student as she drafts and completes her research paper while receiving feedback from instructors. These rich pedagogical features and clear step-by-step instructions make this book an ideal resource for students to strengthen their academic writing skills.

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Table of Contents


Chapter 1: What’s the Occasion? Genre and Voice
Chapter 2: Hitting the Books: Research and Topic
Chapter 3: Moving Forward: Compiling a Research Notebook
Chapter 4: A Trial Run: Proposals as Research Bids
Chapter 5: Hello, Reader! Rhetorical Moves in Scholarly Introductions
Chapter 6: Hills and Valleys: The Big Country of Core Paragraphs
Chapter 7: Crossing the Finish Line: Rhetorical Moves in Scholarly Conclusions
Chapter 8: Freight-Train Nouns: The Density of Scientific Writing
Chapter 9: A Last Review: Revising and Proofreading

Copyright Acknowledgements

Steven C. Roe

Steven Roe has been teaching English for more than fifteen years and currently teaches at Northern Lights College. His scholarly articles have appeared in The Hemingway Review, Seven Decades of Heminway Criticism, The Northern Review, and B.C. Studies.

Designs for Disciplines, Academic Writing, Third Edition, Designs for Disciplines, Second Edition

Pamela H. den Ouden

PAMELA H. DEN OUDEN teaches English and English as a Second Language at Northern Lights College.

Designs for Disciplines, Academic Writing, Third Edition, Designs for Disciplines, Second Edition


"Designs for Disciplines is a lively, accessible text. Informed by recent thinking in rhetoric and composition studies, the book demonstrates in clear terms how students can participate in scholarly communities of practice. It provides countless models of academic writing inspired by popular culture, contemporary media, and questions of social import. The revised edition is rhetorically attuned: it sets out to inspire students to generate their own ideas, provides structures of organization, clarifies the expectations of scholarly readers, and offers invaluable insight into how other students navigate the process. A rich pedagogical resource!"
— Tracy Whalen, Department of Rhetoric, Writing, and Communications, University of Winnipeg

"Writers, new and experienced, will be inspired by this text, which illuminates the challenges of scholarly writing, with a focus on both the features and the processes involved in the practice. The lively discussion and timely examples taken from across the disciplines make this a welcome addition to any academic classroom."
— Jan Duerden, Department of English and Modern Languages, Thompson Rivers University

"Designs for Disciplines’ Roe and den Ouden address the question of how to write well in a witty and refreshingly modern manner. Roe and den Ouden have done an excellent job of addressing the age old question of what makes good writing great. This text will certainly find its way on to book shelves of both the novice and experienced writer who seek the answers to questions of grammar, rhetoric, and research in an accessible yet informative package."
— Viktoria Jovanovic-Krstic, Writing and Rhetoric Program, University of Toronto

"Designs for Disciplines will provide students and instructors alike with an engaging, readable, highly usable composition text, which brings the authors’ wealth of practical experience to bear on the writing process. One of the most beneficial aspects of the book is that it takes readers incrementally through the writing process, ‘stepping’ students all the way from planning through to drafting, researching, outlining, revising, and editing. The authors do an excellent job of demystifying and simplifying the demands of academic writing in a clear, easy-to-follow way. In short, readers will find the book to bring a richly-textured approach to the teaching of academic writing."
— Monika Rydygier Smith, Department of English, University of Victoria

Student Resources

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