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Introduction

 

General Books on Writing Style &/or Mechanics

Need some guidance on the mechanics or style of writing?

These books provide some great advice:

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10 Steps in Writing the Research Paper - Peter T. Markman; Alison L. Heney; Roberta H. Markman; Marie L. Waddell
Call Number: PE 1478 .M3 2011 c.1-2
Updated to conform to today's academic standards and the most recent Internet research sources, this succinct, easy-to-follow guide gives students clear directions for writing papers in virtually all academic subjects. The authors describe how to determine a subject, formulate and outline a provisional thesis, prepare a bibliography, take notes from sources, write a draft, then revise and edit the paper, bringing it to its final form. Added advice includes avoiding plagiarism and making the most of library and Internet resources.

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The Elements of Style - William Strunk; E. B. White
Call Number: PE 1408 .S772 2000
This book has conveyed the principles of English style to millions of readers. Use the fourth edition of "the little book" to make a big impact with writing. William Strunk, Jr. first used his own book, The Elements of Style, in 1919 for his English 8 course at Cornell University. The book was published in 1935 by Oliver Strunk. E. B. White was a student in Professor Strunk's class at Cornell, and used "the little book" for himself. Commissioned by Macmillan to revise Strunk's book, White edited the 1959 and 1972 editions of The Elements of Style.

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Excuse Me, Your Participle's Dangling - Catherine DePino
Call Number: PE 1313 .D47 2013
Excuse Me, Your Participle’s Dangling will give you all the bare essentials of grammar that you need to write like a pro. The book also offers a simple yet foolproof method of writing under pressure, the key to success in any college program or workplace. If you’re a businessperson, college student, or ESL student seeking a user-friendly grammar book that aims to make you a better writer, this book is for you!

The Hodges Harbrace Handbook, 2009 MLA Update Edition - Cheryl Glenn; Loretta Gray
Call Number: RefDesk PE 1112 .H6 2010

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How to Not Write Bad - Ben Yagoda
Call Number: PE 1408 .Y38 2013
According to Ben Yagoda's website, "This book is based largely on my twenty years experience teaching writing at the University of Delaware. I've noticed that a relatively small list of mistakes and problems accounted for the vast majority of the comments and corrections I make on my students' work. The book is an explanation of these problem spots, and a guide to getting them out of your writing."

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In the World - John H. Timmerman; Donald R. Hettinga
Call Number: PE 1417 .T58 2004
Good writing "doesn't just happen," say the authors. It takes work and a basic understanding of rhetorical situations. "Whatever our goals, we want readers to be affected by our writing," they assert. "The work of writing clarifies who we are in relation to both God and the world about us." In the World equips readers to become better writers. It also introduces quality writing with over sixty classic and contemporary selections from numerous writers, including Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, John Donne, Henri Nouwen, Walter Wangerin Jr., and Charles Darwin. This second edition contains a completely updated and revised rhetoric section and added contemporary essays that represent a broad range of ethnicity, gender, and point of view.

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Making Sense: a Student's Guide to Research and Writing - Margot Northey; Joan McKibbin
Call Number: LB 2369 .N67 2012
This wonderful resource for writers "outlines the general principles of style, grammar, and usage, while covering such topics as how to conduct academic research, how to write essays, and how to properly document sources. Concise and accessible, with new information on technology-based research and group presentations, this latest edition continues to be an invaluable resource for students throughout their academic careers and beyond." -- from publisher

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Rhetorical Grammar - Martha J. Kolln; Loretta S. Gray
Call Number: PE 1408 .K696 2010
Rhetorical Grammar encourages writers to recognize and use the grammatical and stylistic choices available to them and to understand the rhetorical effects those choices can have on their readers. Rhetorical Grammar is a writer's grammar - a text that presents grammar as a rhetorical tool, avoiding the do's and don'ts so long associated with the study of grammar. It reveals to writers the system of grammar that they know subconsciously and encourages them to use that knowledge to understand their choices as writers and the effects of those choices on their readers. Besides providing key strategies for revision,Rhetorical Grammar presents systematic discussions of reader expectation, sentence rhythm and cohesion, subordination and coordination, punctuation, modification, diction, and other principles.

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The Rowman and Littlefield Guide to Writing with Sources - James P. Davis
Call Number: PE 1478 .D37 2012
The Rowman & Littlefield Guide to Writing with Sources offers the most thorough and up-to-date discussion of plagiarism and the proper use of sources available today. The new edition incorporates the latest revisions to MLA, CSE, and CMS styles and the lexicon of electronic materials. This succinct and accessible handbook helps writers of all levels to assess, quote, cite, and present information from a variety of sources, including electronic and Internet sources. It features samples, updated throughout, of writing and style sheets, as well as a checklist for quoting and paraphrasing, to help strengthen writing in any field.

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Style: Lessons in Clarity and Grace - Joseph M. Williams; Gregory G. Colomb
Call Number: PE 1421 .W545 2010
Williams own clear, accessible style models the kind of writing that audiences both in college and after will admire. The principles offered here help writers understand what readers expect and encourage writers to revise to meet those expectations more effectively. This book is all you need to understand the principles of effective writing.

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Teaching Writing As Reflective Practice - George Hillocks
Call Number: PE 1404 .H56 1995
George Hillocks, Jr. starts with the basic assumption that writing is at the heart of education, and provides a metatheory to respond to this question: "What is involved in the effective teaching of writing at the secondary and college freshmen levels?" The author outlines a variety of theories, explains the bridges between them, and provides a coherent theoretical basis for thinking about the teaching of writing. This concern with theory and research is offset by his attention to the practical matters of the classroom; teachers are shown how to plan activities and sequences of activities that are appropriate for students who are within Vygotsky's "zone of proximal development".

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They Say - I Say - Cathy Birkenstein; Gerald Graff; Graff
Call Number: PE 1431 .G73 2010
The best-selling new composition book published in this century, in use at more than 1,000 schools, They Say / I Say has essentially defined academic writing, identifying its key rhetorical moves, the most important of which is to summarize what others have said (they say) to set up one’s own argument (I say). The book also provides templates to help students make these key moves in their own writing. The Second Edition includes a new chapter on reading that shows students how to read for the larger conversation and two new chapters on the moves that matter in the sciences and social sciences.

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Tools Students Need to Be Skillful Writers - Phyllis Hostmeyer
Call Number: Oversz LB 1576 .H673 2013
Includes information and activities for students to learn parts of speech, sentence patterns, and sentence combining, as well as practice for short writing assignments, and essays.

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Writing with Style - John R. Trimble
Call Number: PE 1408 .T69 2011
This bestselling brief text is for anyone who needs tips to improve writing. Writing with Style is storehouse of practical writing tips--written in a lively, conversational style. This text providesinsight into: how to generate interesting ideas and get them down on paper; how to write a critical analysis; how to write a crisp opener; how to invigorate a dull style; how to punctuate with confidence; how to handle various conventions--and much more.

 

Discipline-Specific Guides on Writing Style &/or Mechanics

Need some writing guidance in a new discipline?

Information about style and mechanics may be available in your discipline's style manual.

Visit our Citing Sources page to find out how to access these style guides.

 

Here are a few other titles that may be helpful:

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The Associated Press Stylebook 2009 - Associated Press Staff (Editor)
Call Number: StyleMnl PE 4783 .A83 2009
The style of the Associated Press is the gold standard of news writing. With The AP Stylebook in hand, you can learn to write with the clarity and professionalism for which the Associated Press is famous. Fully revised and updated, this new edition contains more than 3,000 A to Z entries-including more than 200 new ones-detailing the AP's rules on grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization, abbreviation and word and numeral usage. New entries include anti-spyware, high-definition, iPhone, outsourcing, podcast, text messaging, social networking, snail mail, WMD and Wikipedia. You'll also find answers to such widespread questions as: * How should bankruptcy and mergers and acquisitions be covered? * When should the names of government bodies or businesses be spelled out and when should they be abbreviated? * What are the general definitions of the major religious movements? * Which companies do the big media conglomerates own? * Who are all the members of the British Commonwealth? * What constitutes "fair use"? * How should box scores for baseball games be filed, and how should sports terms like minicamp and wild card be used * What exactly does the Freedom of Information Act cover? With invaluable additional sections on the unique guidelines for business and sports reporting and on how you can guard against libel and copyright infringement, The AP Stylebook is the one reference that all writers, editors and students cannot afford to be without.

Request this item at the Check-Out Desk.

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The Handbook of Technical Writing - Gerald J. Alred; Charles T. Brusaw; Walter E. Oliu
Call Number: T 11 .B78 2012
According to the publisher's description, this book is "alphabetically organized and easy-to-use, its nearly 400 entries provide guidance for writing all the most common types of professional documents and correspondence, including reports, proposals, manuals, memos, and white papers. Abundant real-world sample documents and visuals throughout the book demonstrate effective technical communication, reflecting current practices for formatting documents and using email."

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Pocket Guide to Technical Communication - William S. Pfeiffer
Call Number: PE 1475 .P465 2011
The Pocket Guide to Technical Communication is a handy reference for on-the-job business, technical and scientific writing. Its brief format provides quick, easy-to-read answers to common writing problems. Filled with examples, it features samples of every major document type and emphasizes quality and planning throughout.

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Business Writing in the Digital Age - Natalie Canavor
Call Number: HF 5781.3 .C365 2012
Business Writing in the Digital Age fills an urgent need to equip business and MBA students to write more effectively in a style that works for today's business world. Using a readable, highly accessible approach and numerous concrete examples, this book frames writing as a strategic tool to accomplish goals. Readers learn a step-by-step system that tells them what to say, and how to say it in every circumstance. At the same time they learn how to improve their technical skills by applying practical techniques rather than grammatical rules.

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How to Write a Business Plan - Mike McKeever
Call Number: HD 30.28 .M3839 2012
Need to write a business plan for the first time? This wonderful resource will get you started by providing ideas for sources of capital, drafting your resume, determining gain and loss forecasts, writing marketing plans, and more. Sample business plans for are provided for small service companies, manufacturing businesses, and product development. Check it out!

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A Pocket Guide to Writing in History - Mary Lynn Rampolla
Call Number: StyleMnl D 13 .R295 2012
An essential writing, reading, and research tool for all history students,A Pocket Guide to Writing in History offers a best-selling combination of concise yet comprehensive advice in a portable and accessible format. This quick-reference guide provides a practical introduction to typical history assignments, exercising critical reading skills, evaluating and documenting sources, writing effective history papers, conducting research, and avoiding plagiarism. Building on its time-tested approach, the seventh edition offers expanded, hands-on guidance for writing and researching in the digital age, and additional coverage on working with primary and secondary sources.

Request this item at the Check-Out Desk.

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A Student's Guide to History - Jules R. Benjamin
Call Number: StyleMnl D 16.3 .B4 2010
A Student’s Guide to History provides the practical help students need to be effective in their history courses. In addition to introducing students to the nature of the discipline, it teaches a wide range of skills from preparing for exams to approaching common writing assignments, and it explains the research and documentation process using numerous examples throughout. With clear and accessible advice, A Student’s Guide to History is an indispensable resource for history students.

Request this item at the Check-Out Desk.

The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation
Call Number: StyleMnl KF 245 .B55 2005
Request this item at the Check-Out Desk.

How to Write Mathematics - Norman E. Steenrod
Call Number: QA 41 .H6 1981

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A Guide to Writing as an Engineer - David F. Beer; David McMurrey; Beer; David A. McMurrey
Call Number: T 11 .B396 2009
This invaluable resource guides engineers through the technical writing issues that they must know in order to succeed in the field. The third edition includes numerous new examples integrated throughout the chapters that illustrate content, organization, and format of different types of documents. Discussions are included on plagiarism, ethics, and citing material properly. In order to accomplish this, the IEEE system of documenting sources is presented.

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Scientific Writing = Thinking in Words - David Lindsay
Call Number: T 11 .L5286 2011
Telling people about research is just as important as doing it. But many researchers, who, in all other respects, are competent scientists, are afraid of writing. They are wary of the unwritten rules, the unspoken dogma and the inexplicably complex style, all of which seem to pervade conventional thinking about scientific writing. This book has been written to expose these phantoms as largely smoke and mirrors, and replace them with principles that make communicating research easier and encourage researchers to write confidently. It presents a way of thinking about writing that emulates the way good scientists think about research. It concentrates on the structure of articles, rather than simply on grammar and syntax. So, it is an ideal reference for researchers preparing articles for scientific journals, posters, conference presentations, reviews and popular articles; for students preparing theses; and for researchers whose first language is not English. Scientific Writing = Thinking in Words expounds principles that produce scientific articles in a wide range of disciplines that are focused, concise and, best of all, easy to write and read. As one senior scientist observed, This book not only made me a better writer; it made me a better scientist .

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Taking Science to the People - Carolyn Johnsen (Editor)
Call Number: Q 223 .T35 2010
The American public, government, and the news media continually grapple with myriad policy issues related to science and technology. Those issues include global warming, energy, stem-cell research, health care, childhood autism, food safety, and genetics, to name but a few. When the public is informed on such topics, chances improve for reasoned policy decisions. Journalists have typically bridged the gap between scientists and the public, but the times now call for more engagement from the experts. The authors in this collection write convincingly about why scientists and engineers should shake off their ivory-tower reticence and take science to the people. Taking Science to the People calls on scientists and engineers to polish their writing and speaking skills in order to communicate more clearly about their work to the public, policy makers, and reporters who cover science.

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Writing and Speaking in the Technology Professions - David F. Beer (Editor)
Call Number: Oversz T 11 .W75 2003
An updated edition of the classic guide to technical communication. Consider that 20 to 50 percent of a technology professional's time is spent communicating with others. Whether writing a memo, preparing a set of procedures, or making an oral presentation, effective communication is vital to your professional success. This anthology delivers concrete advice from the foremost experts on how to communicate more effectively in the workplace. The revised and expanded second edition of this popular book completely updates the original, providing authoritative guidance on communicating via modern technology in the contemporary work environment. Two new sections on global communication and the Internet address communicating effectively in the context of increased e-mail and web usage. As in the original, David Beer's Second Edition discusses a variety of approaches, such as: * Writing technical documents that are clear and effective * Giving oral presentations more confidently * Using graphics and other visual aids judiciously * Holding productive meetings * Becoming an effective listener.

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Writing Ethnographic Fieldnotes - Robert M. Emerson; Rachel I. Fretz; Linda L. Shaw
Call Number: GN 307.7 .E44 2011
In Writing Ethnographic Fieldnotes, Robert M. Emerson, Rachel I. Fretz, and Linda L. Shaw present a series of guidelines, suggestions, and practical advice for creating useful fieldnotes in a variety of settings, demystifying a process that is often assumed to be intuitive and impossible to teach. Using actual unfinished notes as examples, the authors illustrate options for composing, reviewing, and working fieldnotes into finished texts. They discuss different organizational and descriptive strategies and show how transforming direct observations into vivid descriptions results not simply from good memory but from learning to envision scenes as written. A good ethnographer, they demonstrate, must learn to remember dialogue and movement like an actor, to see colors and shapes like a painter, and to sense moods and rhythms like a poet.

 

Teaching Writing

Do you teach writing or a Writing-Intensive Course?

You may also find these titles interesting:

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Because Digital Writing Matters - National Writing Project Staff; Dànielle Nicole DeVoss; Elyse Eidman-Aadahl; Troy Hicks
Call Number: PE 1404 .B43 2010
How to effectively apply digital writing skills in the classroom, from the prestigious National Writing Project. A debate has arisen on how and whether digital writing should be taught and what skills should be expected of students. As many teachers know, students may be very adept at text messaging, and communicating online, but do not know how to craft a basic essay. In the classroom, students are increasingly required to create web-based or multi-media productions that also include writing. Since writing in and for the online realm often defies standard writing conventions, this book defines digital writing and examines how best to integrate new technologies into writing instruction.

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Becoming a Teacher - Robert W. Blake; Brett Elizabeth Blake
Call Number: LB 1707 .B53 2012
Becoming a Teacher provides "a cross-disciplinary approach linking elements of narrative theory to all aspects of pre- and in-service teaching. In essence, it embraces the notion that what teachers say matters. The rationale behind this text is the idea that narrative can not only be a conceptual lens through which a particular discipline can be re-examined, but also an aid to help preservice teachers understand the potential importance of personal experience and reflective ways of knowing as they learn to become teachers."

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Getting It in Writing - Deborah M. Stankevich
Call Number: LB 1576 .G4435 2011
Sixteen teachers. Sixteen journeys. All on a quest to become outstandingteachers of writing. All taking different paths to acquire and hone those skillsthat make a teacher effective. From kindergarten to college, teachers are facedwith the daunting task of instilling the art of writing in their students. Fromcreative writing to research, the art of writing incorporates the writing process tocreate the inking of our thinking. These 16 teachers from across the nation havetraveled a long and arduous path to seek and to reach for the methods andstrategies that will make them successful writing teachers. This is their stories.

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Power, Resistance, and Literacy - Julie A. Gorlewski
Call Number: LB 1631 .G655 2011
By incorporating inquiry and dialogue, this theoretical framework opens a space where resistance can be revealed and examined. In this case, the study exposed glimmers of resistance, spaces in the structure of schooling where students and teachers critique the system and suggest ways of subverting the negative effects of the neoliberal reforms through dialogic, empowering, culturally responsive pedagogies. This book would interest teacher educators, teachers, and school administrators.

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Rehearsing New Roles - Lee Ann Carroll
Call Number: PE 1404 .C346 2002
In Rehearsing New Roles: How College Students Develop as Writers, Lee Ann Carroll argues for a developmental perspective to counter the fantasy held by many college faculty that students should, or could, be taught to write once so that ever after, they can write effectively on any topic, any place, any time. Carroll demonstrates in this volume why a one- or two-semester, first-year course in writing cannot meet all the needs of even more experienced writers. She then shows how students' complex literacy skills develop slowly, often idiosyncratically, over the course of their college years, as they choose or are coerced to take on new roles as writers. As evidence, Carroll offers a longitudinal study of a group of students and the literacy environment they experienced in a midsize, independent university. Her study follows the experiences that altered their conception of writing in college and fostered their growing capacities as writers.

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Writing to Teach; Writing to Learn in Higher Education - Susan Leist
Call Number: PE 1404 .M657 2006
Writing to Teach; Writing to Learn in Higher Education is a comprehensive guide for professors seeking to integrate writing-across-the-curriculum principles into their pedagogy. Through the exploration of theory and practice, treating both pre-writing techniques and classical rhetorical patterns as heuristics, Leist outlines the process of incorporating writing into a curriculum. The text includes appendices with sample checklists, a master scoring rubric, and examples of syllabi and individual assignments. From beginning to end, Writing to Teach; Writing to Learn in Higher Education helps prepare professors to use writing as an intrinsic part of their curriculum.

 

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