If you need help with online teaching or other challenges in academia arising from the COVID-19 crisis, we have prepared this FAQ to get you started.

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0

Let me provide an analogy that may help you determine more about the problem. When you first learn to drive a car it takes most of your focus just to keep the car in your lane, not hit other cars, not exceed the speed limit, and other essential skills needed to just drive the car. Once you master those skills then you can advance in your driving and learn ...


3

In addition to other good points: an underlying problem is the nature of most of the world's educational systems is the idea that "no critique, no comment" (apart from vague praise) is the goal. Yes, encouragement is good, and people too often do forget to be positive... But/and it would be a mistake to interpret "criticism" as "assertion that you're ...


1

At this point, as you are close to finishing your PhD, it is best to avoid any distractions. Clear writing is important and many academics love to point out faults in the writing off others: you have to get used to that. You need to be analytic about the feedback from your supervisor -- mark every bit of advice (e.g. green if it is stylistic, orange if it ...


-1

You are vrey mcuh aehad wtih you're wrting tahn msot of tdoyas yuoth. It wasn't terribly difficult to read that first line was it. I believe in education and having pride in your work but I think it is possible that the criticism you are getting is just a bit too much on the OCD (obsessive compulsive) side of things. I can't imagine anyone having absolute ...


5

You are not alone. I am a native speaker of the British standard English dialect, and fluent, for reading, writing, and listening, in the US formal business dialect. I got 800, then the maximum score, on the verbal portion of the US GRE. I hated writing until I got access to word processing software in the early 1980's. Since them, my approach has been to ...


0

How do you know your adviser is a good writer? Most academics, other than English or literature professors, aren't particularly good writers. The reason is that no one ever criticizes academic writing. When professors submit papers for publication, the reviewer may criticize their ideas or conclusions, but almost never their writing style. Who really cares ...


-1

Yes. Improve your writing. You are smart enough. Put the effort in and do it. Will you be perfect? No. Even most professional, native, writers are not capable of flawless flowing first-try prose. But you could take more of a strain. Seriously. Like in your question, why do you write in one long paragraph? At least chop it up. And ditch the ...


5

I am in the same boat. Trying to get my PhD Thesis written currently. To add to all the great advice from others: Try also to read the papers/project proposals and other text you wrote in the beginning of your PhD, and compare them to what you wrote now. This really helped me a lot to see how my writing (non-english native as well) developed over the ...


40

This doesn't answer your question, but I think your real problem isn't your writing, but the way how you and your advisor communicate. What I suggest is that you have a sit-down with your advisor and raise the issue with them. Tell them what you told us - that their barrage of negative feedback is hampering your motivation and productivity, and that you ...


9

I often get desperate and anxious because I feel I can’t write anything worthy at all. It causes severe writing blocks because whenever I am about to write a sentence, I immediately imagine it being totally destroyed and thrown into a garbage bin. Your writing course is giving you the correct guidance here. Good writing is mostly about clarity and good ...


2

Do not let this criticism destroy your confidence in your intellectual capacities. That is the main thing. Let it also not interfere with the progress of your work on your thesis. I am a non-native English speaker myself. Notwithstanding that, some of my works I published in prime English language scholarly journals are today part of the canon of the ...


4

You should definitely go with Structure 2. It is far more helpful to you (that is, it forces you to engage more deeply with the literature) and your readers (that is, it gives them a more useful review of the literature). The article that is probably the most seminal in my field (information systems) on literature-review methodology is mostly famous because ...


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