Advanced Academic English: Writing Skills - Social and Behavioural Sciences


Communication Skills

Target group

Members of the Doctoral School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Level and Test

Participants should have an advanced knowledge of English, which will be tested before the start of the course. "English for Written Academic Purposes" can be taken at the UCT to prepare for "Advanced Academic English".
Furthermore, participants should already have some experience with writing academic articles as this can be useful for class discussions and they will be asked to bring own material to class.

A computer test has to be taken before the start of the course to ensure that your level of English in an academic context is advanced enough to actively participate in this course (see registration procedure).


The main objective of this course is to acquire a well-structured, coherent academic writing style and to expedite the writing process. An improved grammatical accuracy and expanded vocabulary range will support this.


The course starts with a general focus on academic style, structure and register before individually tackling each section of the research article:

  • Literature reviews
  • Introductions
  • Methodologies
  • Results
  • Discussions
  • Abstracts
  • Titles

Interactive discussion of authentic examples will be used to deduce guidelines and tips for effective academic writing. Within this academic context, several major grammatical items (for example tenses, conditionals and passive voice) will be revised to avoid frequently made mistakes. Vocabulary exercises will broaden the repertoire of the participants. Thanks to lively interaction, a discussion forum is constructed that does not strive for rigid rules and instructions, but rather boosts linguistic confidence in academic writing. The participants will receive both peer and teacher feedback throughout the course as they will be asked to hand in or bring academic writing of their own.

Time schedule & Venue

Course code

Dates (10 sessions of 2 hrs) weekly on Monday (except 03/04,10/04 and 01/05)

Room/Venue Trainer
AAESBS-2223-02 13 February 2023 - 15 May 2023 (ONLINE) 14:00-16:00 ONLINE Tom De Moor


Registration procedure

You need to register for the English test AND the writing skills course at the same time!

The test takes 1 hour and comprises multiple choice questions, gap-fill exercises and a dictation. Check the online sample test hereIf you fail this test, your registration at the course AAE writing skills will be cancelled.

Your subscriptions will be confirmed by separate e-mail from the Doctoral Schools. If the course is fully booked, you can request by e-mail to to be added to the waiting list. Please mention your ID student nr

Registration fee

Free of charge for the members of the Doctoral Schools. The no show policy applies.

The course book 'Academic English: writing a research article; Social and Behavioural Sciences' (Catherine Verguts) is not included and can be bought at Standaard boekhandel, Kouter 31, 9000 Gent. Please ask for 10% discount as a UCT-student.



Number of participants


Evaluation criteria (doctoral training programme)

During the course, participants will already receive feedback to a short excerpt of academic writing. After the end of the course, they will be asked to hand in a longer excerpt for their final evaluation which takes the received remarks into account.
This course is situated within the framework of continuous training and may count for 1 transferable skills training in the cluster Communication skills within doctoral schooling. After completion of the entire cycle and a final evaluation on the basis of a research paper, participants receive the continuous training certificate "Advanced Academic English: Writing Skills".