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Writing in Sociology

A Brief Guide

Lynn Smith-Lovin and Cary Moskovitz

Publication Date - 30 November 2016

ISBN: 9780190203924

288 pages
5 x 8 inches

In Stock

The ideal pocket-sized manual for sociology students who want to improve their writing


Writing in Sociology: A Brief Guide shows students how to write research reports, literature reviews, internship reports, and other genres often assigned in sociology classes with extensive real-world examples and attention to principles of audience, purpose, genre, and credibility. It is part of a series of brief, discipline-specific writing guides from Oxford University Press designed for today's writing-intensive college courses. The series is edited by Thomas Deans (University of Connecticut) and Mya Poe (Northeastern University).

About the Author(s)

Lynn Smith-Lovin is Robert L. Wilson Professor of Arts and Sciences in the Department of Sociology (with secondary appointments in Psychology, Neuroscience, and Women's Studies) at Duke University.

Cary Moskovitz is Director of the Writing in the Disciplines University Writing Program at Duke University.


"Finally, a book about writing within sociology! Concise, well-written, and thorough, Writing in Sociology answers practically every question I've ever been asked about writing by a sociology undergraduate. It provides clear examples grounded in recent academic scholarship, including student writings, and makes explicit all of the implicit knowledge sociologists have about writing in their field." --Kathryn Lively, Dartmouth College

"I'm in love with Writing in Sociology. The text walks the reader through all the intricacies of sociological writing and provides a great snapshot of what it means to be a sociologist. Not only can we use it as the main textbook for our foundations courses, but we can and should require it for all our classes as a reference book. The undergraduates will get so much use out of it in terms of helping them write better and more in line with our expectations, and the graduate students will devour the chapters on writing about original research and sources. I would love to have this be the standard writing manual used for the sociology department." --Kassia Wosick, New Mexico State University

"Writing in Sociology is the Strunk and White for sociologists." --Natalie P. Byfield, St. John's University

"This is the best book about writing for sociology students that I have seen. " --Lisa Slattery Walker, The University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Table of Contents

    Table of Contents

    1. Sociologists as Writers
    Sociology in Context
    Sociological Writing in Academia
    Sociological Writing in Workplaces Outside Academia

    2. Succeeding at Common Sociology Writing Assignments
    Book or Article Review
    Case Study
    Experience Essay
    Internship Report
    Response to Literature, Film, or Other Cultural Products

    3. Writing a Library Research Paper
    Start Smart: A Question and a Prospectus
    Doing the Library Research
    A Recipe for Mediocrity
    Embrace the Hard Questions
    Another Approach: From Popular Press Reports to Research Literature
    One Final Strategy for Finding a Literature: Use the Experts

    4. Starting Your Original Research
    An Overview of the Research/Writing Process
    A Note of Process
    Developing a Research Question
    Finding a Literature
    Establishing a Theoretical Framework

    5. Writing about Your Original Research: Before you have results
    What is a Research Report?
    Writing Introductions
    Reviewing the Literature
    Writing Methods
    Writing a Research Proposal
    Getting IRB Approval

    6. Writing about Your Original Research: After you have results
    Writing About Your Results
    Writing the Discussion
    Writing Abstracts
    Creating a Title

    7. Choosing and Using Sources
    Ways to Use Sources
    Quoting, Paraphrasing, and Summarizing
    Choosing Sources
    Other Types of Sources

    8. Citing Sources and Avoiding Plagiarism
    Why to Cite
    Where to Cite
    ASA Tips for In-Text Citation
    How to Cite
    A Brief Guide to ASA Style
    Avoiding Plagiarism

    9. Style
    First Person: I, we, my, our
    Active and Passive Voice
    Coherence: Being a Trusty Guide
    Writing Concisely
    Counterarguments, Concessions, and Limitations
    Tricky Words and Phrases

    10. A Few Last Things
    Proofreading Tips
    Writing Issues
    Formatting and File Naming


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