If you are studying in a British university you will be required to do a large amount of writing, whatever your subject. Some people distinguish between "essays" and "reports", and you may also know some other names for written assignments. However, sometimes the same name is used for very different types of assignment, and different names are used for very similar types of assignment.

Some of these assignments are more common in some disciplines than in others. For example, in business Case Studies are very common, in law Problem Questions are very common, while in history and philosophy Essays are very common.

Three thousand examples of proficient British university assignments from more than 30 disciplines, such as business, engineering, law, biology, sociology and history have been collected. These form the BAWE corpus. By analysing these assignments 13 basic Genre Families of student writing can be identified and each one has been given a specific name.

The 13 Genre Families are:

Here is some more information about the background to identifying these Genre Families.

Note that the names that have been given to these assignment families have very specific meanings on this site, but you will probably find that your lecturers and your fellow students use these names much more loosely – they may for example call most written assignments "essays", and they may use the terms "essay" and "report"  interchangeably.

Try this Task to check that you understand about the BAWE project.

 

Task 1

Choose the correct answers for these questions about the project.

Exercise

Comments

Hi.
my name's Tuan. i come from vietnam. i am very excited in english but i have try a lot in vocabulary and listening. i am following this page and listen Elementary Podcast. but my vocabulary is terrible even all my effort, may i have a advise to make it better? thank you alot.

Hello Tuan,

We have some pages with our best advice on how to improve all sorts of areas of English, including vocabulary. You can find those pages here - just follow the links to see our tips and advice.

Good luck!

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Mr. Peter,

Would you mind to help me about sentence below? I feed doubt to use it:

1. Assistant of Project Management of Research Projects
2. Project Management Assistant of Research Projects

Could you please help to clarify which for is the correct form or you have any other right form this position about?

Best Regards,
Rithy

Hello Rithy,

I think the best way to formulate this would be as follows:

Project Management Assistant, Research Projects

Project Management Assistant for Research Projects

However, it is very hard to be certain without knowing more information about the role.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Peter,

Thank a lots for your help.

Best Regards,
Rithy

Thank you alot.
Best wishes.

Hello dear LearnEnglish British-Council team!
My name Orien . I am from Tajikistan . I'm working as a programmer in the Russian Federation . I know conversational English .I want to learn technical English in the field of information technology. Please advise me how to understand the technical documentation, and how to formulate a question in this area.
Thank you so much!

Hello Orien,

I'm afraid we don't currently have anything specifically dedicated to improving your technical English. The best I can do is suggest seeking help at a British Council centre (if there is one near you in the Russian Federation) or to do an internet search for 'learn technical English' or 'learn English for information technology' or something similar.

Good luck!

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello everyone
I am Giang, I'm from VietNam .I want to improve all skills. I dont know how to start. I'm learning grammar but I can't apply in communication.

Hello GiangTran116,

There some advice on how to use LearnEnglish in general, as well as how to improve the different skills, on our Frequently asked questions page. It sounds to me as if Elementary Podcasts might be a good place for you to start. I'd recommend you listen to an episode or two to see how you get on. To get the most out of an episode, be sure to listen to the recording more than once, first without the transcript and later with the transcript to help you understand parts that are difficult. Be sure to write down words and phrases that are useful or difficult for you – you can study this list in the future, and also practise pronouncing these words and phrases to improve your fluency and pronunciation. And of course the exercises will also be useful for you!

Finally, you might also want to consider a course at a British Council teaching centre near you – face-to-face classes with a teacher are probably the most effective way to improve your speaking especially. If you have any questions or need other advice, please let us know.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

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