12 September 2019 from 14:00 to 17:00

Academic Writing in English - FULLY BOOKED

Course description

In this course, we will introduce writing techniques that you can use to communicate your message as clearly and concisely as possible. After learning the techniques in class, you will immediately apply them to your current article and you will receive personal feedback every week. You will develop the confidence to become an equal player in discussions about writing with your peers and superiors. 

Learning objectives

You will learn to assess your own and others’ writing, with a focus on clarity and conciseness. You will learn to craft better sentences and paragraphs in English, to create logical flow in paragraphs, to reduce wordiness and to improve readability. You will learn to use the appropriate tone and to nuance with tenses and verb structures. We also review grammar, punctuation and vocabulary issues and discuss American vs British.

Instructional method

This course consists of face-2-face lectures and discussions. You will receive individual feedback from the trainer online. We recommend this course especially to PhD candidates in their first or second year who want to develop strategies on how to write understandable, clear academic English. To take full advantage of the course, you will need to work extensively on your own writing; participants report spending at least 4 hours spread out over the week between each session. You may need to or choose to spend significantly more than 4 hours a week on your writing during this course, especially if you do not have a rough draft. We strongly recommend that you have a rough draft (a first version) in hand at the start of the course. Participants will be asked to submit a methods section (or a part thereof) within 24 hours after the first session. (We will work on Methods in Week 1, Results in Week 2, Introduction in Week 3, etc.)


Dianna Beaufort - Words on the Run

Max. number of participants


Number of credits

1.8 EC

Course schedule

Thursdays September 12, 19 and 26, Wednesdays October 2 and 9 and Thursday October 17, from 14.00 till 17.00 h.

Course certificate

You will receive a course certificate if you attend at least five full course sessions and participate fully in the discussion and revision process. You cannot miss the first session.

Course fee

Course fee internal PhD candidates: €0.
Course fee academic staff UU/UMC: €555.
Course fee external participants (if space permits): €920.

‘Internal PhD candidates’ include:

  • PhD candidates of the Graduate School of Life Sciences, registered in Hora Est/MyPhD, working (either on a salary or on a scholarship) at the Faculty of Science, the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, the UMC Utrecht, the Princess Máxima Center, the Hubrecht Institute, the Westerdijk Institute, the Netherlands Cancer Institute and the RIVM.

‘Academic staff UU/UMC’ include:

  • PhD candidates registered at the GSLS, but employed by another institution than the ones mentioned above;
  • PhD candidates registered at another Utrecht University Graduate School; 
  • Postdocs employed by the Utrecht University or UMC Utrecht;
  • Other academic staff employed at the UU/UMC

‘External participants' include:

  • all other participants


You may cancel your application free of charge up to four weeks before the start of the course. If you cancel your application within four weeks before the start or if you do not meet the attendance requirements of the course, you(r department/research group) will be charged a no-show fee (€280 for this course). Unfortunately we cannot make any exceptions to this policy.

The trainer made me aware of few (but essential!) rules in scientific writing and how to benefit from it
It has changed my writing significantly and therefore incredibly improved my scientific output quality. I think this course should be strongly encouraged for all PhD candidates.
My writing really improved after following this course!
Start date and time
12 September 2019 14:00
End date and time
12 September 2019 17:00
Entrance fee
Course fee internal PhD candidates: €0. Course fee academic staff UU/UMC: €555. Course fee external participants (if space permits): €920.
More information
PhD Course Centre