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The Basics of Essay Writing [Hardcover]

Nigel Warburton
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
RRP: 80.00
Price: 76.49 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

30 Mar 2006 0415239990 978-0415239998 1

Essay writing is an essential skill for students at all academic levels and the ability to produce clear, well-argued essays is key to good coursework and the vast majority of written exams. This book offers the new or under-confident essay writer all the guidance and advice they need to dramatically improve their skills and their grades.

The book opens with a discussion of why it is so important to write a good essay and then proceeds through a step-by-step exploration of exactly what students need to think about in order to improve. It contains help on how to:

  • focus on answering the question asked
  • research and plan essays
  • build and sustain an argument
  • improve writing style and tone.

Written in the author’s accomplished, student-friendly style, this guide is packed full of good advice and practical exercises. Students of all ages and in every subject area will find it an easy-to-use and indispensable aid to their studies.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (30 Mar 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415239990
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415239998
  • Product Dimensions: 20 x 13 x 1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,205,057 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Nigel Warburton (1962 - ). Nigel Warburton is a freelance philosopher and podcaster and bestselling author of several popular introductory Philosophy books including A Little History of Philosophy, Philosophy: The Basics, Thinking from A to Z, Philosophy: The Classics, Free Speech: A Very Short Introduction, Philosophy: Basic Readings, Freedom: An Introduction with Readings, and The Art Question. He has also co-edited two books based on his popular Philosophy podcast which he makes with David Edmonds 'Philosophy Bites'. On Twitter he his @philosophybites, and he runs the weblogs Virtual Philosopher and Art and Allusion. His other podcasts include Social Science Bites, Free Speech Bites, Everyday Philosophy, and Philosophy: The Classics - all available on iTunes.

Product Description


'Nigel Warburton has compressed the essential points of essay writing skills into an amazingly small space ... His ideas and recommendations come thick and fast, and he doesn't dwell on anything for very long. The result is a highly concentrated series of tips, advice, and guidance on all aspects of academic writing ... Nigel Warburton is the principal author of a very successful Open University course on essay-writing skills. In fact (without knowing him in the slightest) I have been tutoring it for the last few years, and I have been repeatedly struck by the thoroughness of its approach. All the students who follow the course recommendations pass with flying colours.' - Mantex reviews

About the Author

Nigel Warburton is Senior Lecturer at The Open University and a bestselling author. His other books include Thinking from A to Z, third edition, Philosophy: The Basics, fourth edition, Philosophy: The Classics, third edition, Philosophy: The Essential Study Guide and The Art Question and Freedom, all published by Routledge.

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Essay writing is at the heart of education. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Common Sense 22 Oct 2008
Didn't Monty Python have a sketch about stating "the bleeding obvious"?
This book does just that. If you have never written an essay before, try one of the Open University's study guides; if you have, then 'The Basics of Essay Writing' may tie up some loose ends. If you are getting low grades and think you deserve more, consider this book. It's a very straightforward, common sense guide to constructing an essay.

I particularly liked the unintentional irony where the author follows his section on the avoidance of cliches with a piece on sexist language: several of the politically correct alternatives to the sexist nouns he lists, now seem quite clicheed themselves.

It's a very good price and a very handy pocket size! (Professor Warburton would not like that exclamation mark, nor this chatty ending. Quite right!)
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32 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book for tackling essays 10 Jan 2007
By Adam
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm currently in the stages of preparing for my next course - A211 - Philosophy and the Human Situation (OU).

I recently completed A103 - Introduction to the Humanities (OU) with a decent pass mark. However, I often found myself spending far too much time on the task of completing essays. My biggest problem was allowing myself to be distracted and finding other things to do. I would sit for hours stirring at a blank screen wondering what the hell to write whilst pouring over my seemingly useless notes. With just hours to spare I would just manage to pull off a decent essay, but I always felt it could have been a less stressful task that didn't take days to complete.

So, I've just read this book cover to cover and I feel 100 times better about starting A211. The advice given in this book is excellent and I've a new found confidence in tackling essays. I particularly enjoyed chapter 8 - The Craft of Writing. I only wish I read it before I started A103.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant little book 9 Mar 2013
By ajv
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Brilliant little book. Acts as a refreshing change from all the "heavy stuff" on essay writing and serves as a reminder of what you should be doing.

Quick easy read but will be useful to dip back into when needed.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
I do like Warbuton's Myers-Briggs inspired Appendix, where he has categorised essay writers. I decided I was a combination of a 'personaliser' and a 'colloquialist'. He has written good stuff on 'overcoming obstacles' - academic writers' block. This bit needs to be expanded I think though - for example I find aromatherapy (frankinscense and clary -sage for writing) and exercise helpful, as well as flicking through papers or books. On the left side of my computer monitor I have a list of things that can help me with my writers' block - acupressure, meditation, visualisation, cups of tea. I think the book could be better laid out - so for example helpful tips like this in boxes. The book is too short and needs much more material on grammar, structure and planning, time management and constructing sentences and paragraphs. The bibliography is too short, but overall this book could get you going again with its humour and tips.
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