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Consultations on academic writing and study skills

In a consultation at the Academic Writing Service you can get advice from specialists who will help you to develop your writing skills and study more effectively.

 

It was the best ever support. I got tips and advice that helped me see my text with new eyes.

 

Book a consultation

We offer consultations in Swedish and English and you can request to have your meeting on campus or online. Book a consultation via our email forms below:

Book a consultation in English 

Book a consultation in Swedish 

Our on-campus consultations are held in room 229, Studenthuset B, Frescati campus.

Our online consultations are held via Zoom. To participate in online consultations you need access to a computer with a camera and microphone. You also need to have installed the Zoom application. You can find more information about installing and using Zoom here:

Get started with Zoom

 

In a consultation you can discuss study strategies, your study habits, presentation technique and academic writing. You can get feedback on an oral presentation or on a text you have written for your studies.

We help both new and experienced students

Maybe you want help getting started or maybe you want to hone and develop your writing skills. As a new student, it is completely normal to feel like you do not know how to get through all of your course literature or how to write a good response for a take-home exam. We help you to find functioning study strategies or discuss how you can make your writing more academic. If you already have experience with university study but want to develop further as as a writer, we can help you improve your work. We provide a reader’s perspective on your writing and can discuss different ways of structuring and expressing your ideas.

Receiving feedback on a text

If you want help with a text you are currently working on, we can read parts of it – around two pages for a take-home exam or up to a chapter for feedback on structure in a thesis. For shorter texts, we suggest no more than one visit per text, but if you are writing a thesis you can visit us multiple times to discuss different chapters. Regardless of the length of the text, we can only read up to 30% of your text in total.

It is important that you are able to work independently and that you own your text and your writing process. We therefore do not make any corrections to texts. Instead, we aim to give you tools and strategies that you can use to develop your writing yourself. We give you a reader’s perspective and constructive criticism. We highlight what we think you have done well, and aspects of your text we think you can improve. In the end, however, you have to make your own decisions about your work.

We value having a dialogue with you and we therefore only give feedback through consultation meetings. It is not possible to just receive written feedback via email. A consultation lasts 45 minutes and you can visit us a few times each semester.

 

Every Tuesday, you can visit our online drop-in to get answers to shorter questions about writing and study skills. You can also visit the drop-in to get information about the Academic Writing Service and to find out how we can help you with your studies.

Visit our drop-in

A drop-in consultation lasts around 15 minutes. For more extensive queries or to discuss a text, we recommend that you book a consultation instead. In booked consultations, we can provide you with better support for developing your study and writing skills.

 

When you want help with study skills

Before the meeting

To book a consultation with us, click on one of the links at the beginning of the article. You will then receive a booking confirmation with your appointment time and information about the meeting. You will normally receive the booking confirmation within two working days of making the booking. Before your meeting, we read your booking request and the information you have given us about what you want help with.

For online meetings with us, you need access to Zoom, either on your computer or telephone. If you do not already have access to Zoom, you can find instructions on how to download and set up the application in this article on Serviceportalen:

Get started with Zoom

If you have booked an in-person meeting with us at the university, the meeting will be in Studenthuset on the Frescati campus. We are on level 1 (downstairs) in the Beta block. There are signs all the way to our offices. Make sure you are there on time. There are benches to sit on in the corridor if you need to wait. When it is time for the consultation to begin, the consultant will come out and get you.

During the consultation

A consultation lasts 45 minutes (or 60 minutes for extended consultations). We begin by discussing how your previous studies have gone, what you do when you study now and what goals you have with your study. The rest of the meeting will vary in structure, depending on what you feel you most need to work on. We consider what works well for you now and what you might be able to do differently. This can relate to:

  • how you plan your study time
  • how you cultivate good study habits
  • how you can set realistic short- and long-term goals
  • how you can read effectively
  • note-taking techniques
  • how you can stay motivated

After the meeting

You now have the opportunity to work the skills that were identified as areas for improvement. We often book in a follow-up meeting to see what changes you were able to make. You can decide whether or not you would like to speak to the same consultant again.

When you want help with a text

Before the meeting

To book a consultation with us, click on one of the links at the beginning of the article. You will then receive a booking confirmation with your appointment time and information about the meeting. You will normally receive the booking confirmation within two working days of making the booking. We often have waiting times for consultations, so it is important that you make your booking well in advance of any deadlines (up to four weeks) and that you are as open as possible to different appointment times.

The day before the meeting, you have to send your text to writingservice@su.se (or sprakverkstaden@su.se for Swedish-language texts). Please send us everything you have written. For coursework, please also send the assignment instructions and grading criteria. If you have not started writing yet and want to discuss how to get started or how to approach a given task, you do not need to send us anything in advance.

For online meetings with us, you need access to Zoom, either on your computer or telephone. If you do not already have access to Zoom, you can find instructions on how to download and set up the application in this article on Serviceportalen:

Get started with Zoom

If you have booked an in-person meeting with us at the university, the meeting will be in Studenthuset on the Frescati campus. We are on level 1 (downstairs) in the Beta block. There are signs all the way to our offices. Make sure you are there on time. There are benches to sit on in the corridor if you need to wait. When it is time for the consultation to begin, the consultant will come out and get you.

Before your meeting, we read your booking request and the information you have given us about what you want help with. We then read (a part of) your text to understand what works well and what could be improved. We do not correct or proofread your text. It is your work and ultimately your responsibility. What we do instead is to discuss how you can fix potential problems. To ensure that you retain ownership of your text, we only read a part of it. For coursework this might be up to two to three pages, but never more than 30% of what you have written. For shorter texts, we might only read and give feedback on one page. Things we look for when we read can include:

  • that you have done what you were asked to do in the task description
  • that the text is coherent and has a logical sequence of ideas
  • that the information in each section is appropriate for that section
  • your use of sources and how you draw on other people’s ideas
  • your language and style

If you have not started writing yet, we might instead discuss how to plan your writing, how to interpret task descriptions, or how to deal with procrastination or writer’s block.

During the meeting

A consultation lasts 45 minutes (or 60 minutes for extended consultations). We begin by discussing the task and what you have worked on so far. We might also discuss your previous experiences with university writing and your goals for your study. Then we discuss the text. You might have some specific questions you want answers to. If you do not, the discussion will be based on the perceived strengths and weaknesses in your text. Our goal is to ensure that you have received advice that you can use to further develop your writing on your own.

After the meeting

After the meeting, you continue to work on your text. If your text is a piece of coursework, it is unlikely that you will need to discuss it with us again, although you can book new appointments when you have new writing tasks. If your text is part of a thesis, we can discuss different parts of the thesis over multiple meetings. It is often possible to meet the same consultant when you book new meetings.

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