Using language with a amount that is suitable of can protect your claims from being easily dismissed. It also helps to indicate the level of certainty we now have with regards to the data or support.

Compare the following two short texts, (A) and (B). You will observe that although the two texts are, in essence, saying the same task, (B) has a significant number of extra language all over claim. A amount that is large of language is performing the purpose of ‘hedging’.

Compare the next two short texts, (A) and (B). What number of differences can you see when you look at the text that is second? What’s the function/effect/purpose of each and every difference?

You shall probably observe that (B) is much more ‘academic’, however it is important to know why.

(A) Extensive reading helps students to enhance their vocabulary.

(B) Research conducted by Yen (2005) generally seems to indicate that, for a substantial proportion of students, extensive reading may donate to a marked improvement within their active vocabulary. Yen’s (2005) study involved learners aged 15-16 within the UK, even though it could be applicable to many other groups. However, the study involved an opt-in sample, which means that the sample students might have been more ‘keen’, or more involved in reading already. It will be useful to see whether or not the findings differ in a wider sample.

(take note that Yen (2005) is a fictional reference used only for instance).

The table below provides some situations of language to make use of when making knowledge claims.

Try to look for examples of hedging language in your own reading, to add to the table.

Phrases for Hedging

Language Function with Example Phrases

1) Quantifiers

a fraction
a minority/majority of
a proportion of
to a point

2) Appearance

appears to
has the looks of
is similar to
shares characteristics with
appears to be in line with

3) Possibility

has the possibility of
has the potential to
is in a position to

4) Frequency

tends to
has a tendency to

5) Comparatively

in a simpler way than .
more simply than …
When compared to …

Within the context of …
…in certain situations…
Within some households…

7) Ev >Based on …
As indicated by …
According to …

8) Description in language

could be described as
could be thought to be
is sometimes labelled
can be equated to
the term is normally used to mean
the term is normally used to mention to
this may indicate that …
this may claim that …

Language categories devised and compiled by Jane Blackwell

IOE Centre that is writing Online

Self-access resources through the Academic Writing Centre in the UCL Institute of Education.

Still need help? Ask and respond to questions on academic writing on our Moodle forum:
Q & A Forum

Academic Centre that is writing Institute of Education

Essays often sound tough, but they are the easiest method to publish an extended answer.
In this lesson, we will glance at just how to write one.


Start your answer, and list what you should be writing about

Write about the ideas which will reply to your question


Re-write what your ideas are and say why you’ve got answered them

Arguments, Keywords and Definitions

Before we start going right on through how an essay works, we must go through three terms that individuals will used to describe that which you do for essay writing structure.
Argument = every one of the main points you are planning to come up with in your essay.
Keywords = words that are important elements of the question
Definition = A one-sentence summary of the whole essay which you write in your introduction.
We shall go through some situations in a minute.

Basic Introduction

To write your introduction, follow these steps. Each of these steps means you start a sentence that is new.

  • Rewrite the question using keywords, through the name of text(s) and s that are author(
  • Write a one sentence answer (definition)
  • List all of the main points of the argument

Exemplory case of an Introduction

Are pigs able to fly? (Question)
Pigs aren’t able to fly. (Re-write of question)
they can not fly because their bodies don’t allow them to. (Definition)
These are typically too heavy to float, they do not have wings or propellers, in addition they cannot control aircraft. (Main Points)

Your body forms most of your essay.
It’s the most part that is important of essay you write.
Within you, you must argue your entire main points and explain why they answr fully your question.
Each main point should be in a new paragraph.

Each main point should always be in a paragraph that is different. Each paragraph must certanly be lay out similar to this:

  • Topic Sentence: a sentence that is short you repeat one main point from your own introduction.
  • Discussion: Explain why your point that is main is and provide main reasons why.
  • Evidence: Proof that you get from a text, a quote, or a ‘fact’. It should prove that your particular answer is right.
  • Lead out: Finish the point that is main you can easily go to the next.

Illustration of a physical body Paragraph

Pigs are too heavy to float. (Topic Sentence)
Their large bodies and weight mean that they’re not able to float, which can be one of the ways a creature can fly. To float a pig would have to be lighter than air. (discussion)
A pig weighs 200 kilograms, and this is why weight, it is not lighter than air. (Evidence)
For this reason, a pig is unable to float and cannot fly. (Lead out)

Conclusion of Essay Writing Structure

A conclusion is a short summary of everything you’ve got written in the body paragraph.
It must ‘tie’ everything together.

As pigs aren’t able to float, they do have wings and cannot control aircraft, they unable to go into the air, and therefore cannot fly.

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