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This book guides students in how to construct coherent and powerful essays and dissertations by demystifying the process of creating an argument and helping students to develop their critical skills. It covers everything from the beginning stages of reading critically and keeping notes, through to the final stages of redrafting and proof-reading. It provides step-by-step instructions in how to identify, define, connect and contrast sociological concepts and propositions in order to produce powerful and well-evidenced arguments. Students are shown how to apply these lessons in essay writing, and to a longer piece of writing, such as a dissertation, as well as how to solve common problems experienced in writing, including getting rid of waffle, overcoming writer’s block and cutting an essay down to its required length. For students wishing to improve their basic writing skills or to refresh their memories, the book also gives a clear and concise overview of the most important grammatical rules in English and how to use them to good effect in writing clear sentences and sensible paragraphs.

Examples from essays written by sociology students at leading universities are used throughout the book. These examples are used to show what students have done well, what could be done better and how to improve their work using techniques of argument construction. It will be of use to students studying sociology and related disciplines, such as politics, anthropology and human geography, as well as for students taking a course which draws upon sociological writing, such as nursing, social psychology or health studies.

Leonie Hannan

Letter-writing was an instrument for self-education and provided the writer with the space to rehearse critical skills. Letter-writing started in childhood as a tool in parents’ strategies to educate and socialise their children. Once the childhood exercise had been converted into a lifelong epistolary habit however its scope broadened – laying open networks of acquaintance both geographically and socially distant from the correspondent. Here the letter is seen as a key mechanism in the process of intellectual engagement that both stimulated and shaped the informal scholarship of women in this period. The networks of exchange created and maintained by epistolary culture will also be examined. Female letter-writing networks created mutual reinforcement of intellectual purpose. In other cases male mentorship proved the catalyst for cross-gender academic exchange.

in Women of letters
Jonathan Benthall

Martin’s new book to ensure its permanence on reading lists, in particular evidence of his insatiably enquiring mind, though some of the terms he uses, such as ‘axial angles of transcendence’ and ‘socio-logic’, require at least a second reading before they become clear. Martin applies literary critical skill to impale some of the statements made by

in Islamic charities and Islamic humanism in troubled times
Engaging with film during the lifecourse
Bridgette Wessels
Peter Merrington
Matthew Hanchard
, and
David Forrest

of the house to try either to find something new or to explore film more’. He said that conversations were about ‘Oh, what's this? I like that actor, but I haven't heard of this film!’ Sometimes it might be ‘quite an underrated film, like Mother with Jennifer Lawrence’, but he and others would discover something from those films and also hone their critical skills in developing a personal journey. This type of relationship can also be fostered in later life. Daniel, for example, nearing retirement, spoke about the personal and social meaning of going to the

in Film audiences
A guide for students
Stephen Mossman

to spend some time with a key article or book chapter in that language, using a dictionary to help you with the new vocabulary. Your linguistic skill will quickly accumulate, and you will be repaid with much more than just the factual content of what you read, because you will be acquainting yourself with different scholarly traditions, ways of thinking and styles. This is valuable experience and a critical skill in itself, quite apart from the utility to your understanding of medieval history.

in Debating medieval Europe
Sean W. Burges

critical skill. To be clear, this does not mean opening the path with an unmarked envelope containing a wad of high denomination bills, although a number of politicians have been caught on tape doing just this, and the Dilma government and the PT was facing serious corruption charges as this book was being written. Rather, it means slowing down just a bit and having a conversation, asking what everybody wants from a given situation, then looking to see where a mutually satisfying accommodation might be reached. The emphasis is squarely on relationships and mutual

in Brazil in the world
From opt-outs to solidarity?
Aideen Elliott

to opt in to the Blue Card Directive (2009/50). A permit that aims to attract highly skilled workers to the EU by providing more favourable entrance and residency conditions, the Blue Card has not been a success and negotiations to reform the directive are currently stalled ( Gsir 2013 ). Ireland has instead implemented a Critical Skills Permit, which is an example of how Ireland “mirrors” EU

in Ireland and the European Union
Abstract only
Paul Jackson

of extremist material, and embarrassing those that do not do enough to limit abuses on their platforms, are all impactful. However, ultimately solutions to minimising the risks posed by online extremism will be found through efforts to tackle the underlying appeal of the extreme right, and developing better critical skills among all internet users, old and young.

in Pride in prejudice
Open Access (free)
Simona Giordano
John Harris
, and
Lucio Piccirillo

at large must be preceded by a certain degree of formal education in science and in its methods, so that people can develop the critical skills that may enable them to approach scientific developments rationally and critically and to form more reasoned or rational beliefs. Many of the contributors here, as mentioned earlier, participate in an ongoing international forum on freedom of scientific research begun in 2006, and have participated in academic and political debate both before and since. So, with this volume we want to contribute to an ongoing international

in The freedom of scientific research
Open Access (free)
Cécile Laborde

from autonomously endorsing them again at the end of a process of careful critical attention. As Claude Nicolet puts it, ‘a republican can think what he wishes, provided he thinks by himself’.26 On this view, laïcité B does not go beyond providing individuals with the skills associated with the exercise of MCK9 1/10/2003 168 10:32 AM Page 168 Toleration and laïcité autonomy, that is, it does not stipulate the particular ways in which autonomy may be used to the good. However, it is undeniable that in its exclusive emphasis on the development of critical skills

in The culture of toleration in diverse societies