Efficient Writing


Study writing, media studies or journalism, to be a professional writer with this alternative education writing school; learning online or by correspondence how to write in a home business.

Course CodeAWR102
Fee CodeS1
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment


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Courses can be started at any time from anywhere in the world!

Learn how to write by distance learning.

  • What is a noun?
  • What is a verb or adjective?
  • How do you punctuate, write more clearly and communicate more effectively? 
  • Learn to express your thoughts faster and with greater confidence.

This external study course allows you to better understand all of these things which will help in both your business and private life.  It will also help you to write job applications.

If you've never developed your ability to write to the extent you would like; this course could be a perfect way for you to do that.

As the course is self paced and you have your own tutor, you can deal with issues and master things in a home study environment where you might have otherwise been left lagging behind everyone else in a classroom.

Comment from one of our Efficient Writing students:

"I am glad I did the course and wish to do another one."   M. Tanzi
 

Lesson Structure

There are 6 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction
    • Scope of writing -where is writing used
    • What is effective writing
    • Good writing is direct
    • Good writing is objective
    • Variety is good in writing
    • Understanding human communication
    • The communication process
    • Types of communication (verbal, non verbal, etc)
    • Communication channels
    • Communicating efficiently
    • Writing for a purpose
    • Understand your reader
    • Content
  2. Basic Writing Skills
    • Parts of speech
    • Types of nouns -proper, common, collective
    • Purals
    • Possessive nouns and pronouns
    • Types of verbs: regular, irregular etc.
    • Adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions
    • Common gramatical errors: comma splices, fragmented sentences, dangling modifiers, etc
    • Sentence construction
    • Types of sentence: declarative, interrogative, exclamatory, etc
    • Sentance structure
    • Constructing sentances
    • Combining sentances
    • Expanding basic sentances
    • Adding modifying words, phrases or clauses.
    • Linking words or phrases
  3. Clear Wording
    • Introduction
    • Common causes of confusion: homphones, malopropropisms, etc
    • Ambiguity
    • Making meanings clear: Illustrative context, glossing, etc
    • Informative language
    • Persuasive language
    • Imaginative language
    • Other types of language: colloquial, formal, informal, etc
    • Simplicity
    • Building a paragraph
    • General guidelines for effective writing
  4. Concise Wording
    • Conciseness
    • Circumlocution
    • Condensing your writing
    • Common problemscontributing to lack of conciseness
    • Active and passive voice
    • Condensing text: how to Precis
  5. Punctuation and Accuracy
    • Punctuation purpose
    • Semi colon, colon, dash, comma
    • Spelling
    • American or English spelling?
  6. Planning what you write
    • Business formats
    • Business letters
    • Planning what you write
    • Writing a media release
    • Writing an answer or an essay
    • Academic writing, verbs, quotations
    • Unpack the question
    • Research
    • Referencing

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.

Aims

  • Define the nature and scope of writing.
  • Discuss the way written sentences and paragraphs are properly structured.
  • Develop an increased capacity to write clearly.
  • Develop improved conciseness in writing.
  • Develop and improve punctuation skills.
  • Apply basic writing skills more efficiently in a range of situations.

What is the Difference between Good and Bad Writing?

Good writing does not just happen - it takes application and skill to do well. It must be purposeful, meaningful, relevant, and appropriate to its intended readers. It must also be easy to understand.  In order to satisfy all of these criteria, the writer must first answer several questions:

  • What do I want this writing to achieve? (What is its purpose?)
  • Who will read it?
  • What will be the content of the writing? (What might the anticipated readers need to know, want to know, and like to know?) 
  • How can I best communicate this information to achieve my purpose? (What language, layout and format will be most suitable?)

Purpose
The purpose of your writing is often given to you by someone else, such as a teacher or employer, who asks you to write something. That person, however, may not clearly state the reasons behind their request. Your first task, therefore, is to ask what that person wants you to achieve with your writing. 

Possible goals include:

  • To report
  • To explain
  • To clarify
  • To gather information
  • To find out exactly what they want
  • To correct misinformation
  • To persuade
  • To apologise
  • To justify.

Also consider what you want to gain from the writing task. Do you want to:

  • Impress your employer or teacher
  • Demonstrate your writing skills 
  • Demonstrate your knowledge on a certain topic
  • Get a promotion or good grades
  • Improve your reputation

Paragraphs
While sentences are the starting blocks of writing, they need a framework to hold them together. This framework is a paragraph. A paragraph is a group of sentences revolving around a single subject. We use paragraphs to order and structure our writing, so that the individual sentences form a coherent narrative or story when placed next to other related sentences. 

Logical, free flowing paragraphs are essential for compelling writing, yet many novice writers struggle with this basic writing skill.  Just imagine for a moment what your writing would be like without paragraphs!  It would be like listening to someone talking nonstop who never takes a breath, and struggling to make sense of their words. Paragraphs help order a writer's thoughts so that information can be clearly communicated.

A typical paragraph begins with a statement of the central idea. This is called the topic sentence. The following sentences in the paragraph explain, support or develop that statement with details, examples and evidence. The central idea of this paragraph, for example, is the central idea of a paragraph; thus it is introduced in the first sentence of the paragraph. 

Writers use various methods to organise their ideas within paragraphs. The most common is to work from the general to the specific or from the specific to the general. Or in other words, generally a writer will either begin with an overarching statement and then fill in all the details, or begin with a specific detail and work their way out to a general statement.

 

What if Your Readers are not all the same?

Often the same writing is read by more than one person. For instance, you might write a memo to your department, but it might also go to your boss. Therefore, you should identify likely readers of your document, and consider what they want and expect, and how they might interpret your message.

Like all forms of behaviour, writing is governed by certain cultural and social expectations. For example, in most countries, business writing is expected to be more objective, formal and factual than creative writing, or writing for magazines. It must also be formatted according to standards established in that country. In an increasingly global economy, business writing must also meet international expectations. Students must also be able to meet international standards.

Despite these international standards, however, different cultures might have quite different ideas about what is acceptable or expected. For instance, in some countries, direct requests, statements and refusals are acceptable, while in other countries, directness may be considered rude and immature. Different cultures might have quite different formal ways of starting and ending a letter. For example, in some English-speaking countries, it is polite to complement the reader and to wish them good health. In others, it is acceptable to simply address the reader as Dear Mr. X , then get straight to business. In yet others, it is common to use the reader’s first name and to sign with your first name after the first communication between you.

It is important to meet the expectations of your intended audience regarding what is appropriate. Until you become more familiar with your reader and his/her way of communicating, the safest action is to be more formal.


 

Why do we write?

We write for many purposes including: enjoyment, business, to achieve goals, to get others’ cooperation, support or approval, to express our thoughts and ideas, to promote ideas or encourage change, to correct perceived misinformation, to make a name for ourselves, to sell products, to change others’ opinions, to keep in touch with friends, family and others, to demonstrate knowledge, to impress, to criticise or complain, to initiate change or a course of action, to learn, to help us remember things …There is no end to possible reasons for writing.

This home learning course helps you improve your writing, so that you can communicate faster, more clearly and with fewer words.
 
 
 

Who will benefit from this course:

Administrators, office staff, managers and others who have to write often in any aspect of daily life.

Amateur and aspiring writers seeking to build confidence in their abilities, or improve their fundamentals.

English as a second language speakers looking to improve their written fluency and work/study communication skills.

At the end of this course you will:

  • Know the difference between parts of speech
  • Understand the fundamentals underpinning good writing
  • Be able to analyse any piece of writing and describe what works and what doesn't
  • Write everyday material with ease, from general emails to work reports.

Next steps:

Want something more in depth? Learn about our certificates and diplomas in writing and journalism.




Credentials

ACS is an Organisational Member of the British Institute for Learning and Development
ACS is an Organisational Member of the British Institute for Learning and Development

Member of Study Gold Coast, Education Network
Member of Study Gold Coast, Education Network

ACS Global Partner - Affiliated with colleges in seven countries around the world.
ACS Global Partner - Affiliated with colleges in seven countries around the world.

ACS is recognised by the International Accreditation and Recognition Council
ACS is recognised by the International Accreditation and Recognition Council



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John Mason

Writer, Manager, Teacher and Businessman with over 40 years interenational experience covering Education, Publishing, Leisure Management, Education, and Horticulture. He has extensive experience both as a public servant, and as a small business owner. J
Rachel Syers

Rachel has worked as a newspaper journalist for the past 15 years in a range of roles from sub-editor and social columnist to news reporter, covering rounds such as education, health, council, music, television, court, police, Aboriginal and Islander affa
Rosemary Davies

Businesswoman, Journalist, Editor, Broadcaster, Teacher, Consultant for over 30 years.
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