What is Scholarly Writing? – Essay Sample

There are many important things to keep in mind when developing a written work that is scholarly and fit to be shared with the academic community.  First of all, there must be a clear purpose for the work and the information must be credible.  The reader needs to know why the topic is important and that the author is using credible sources to express the material in a scholarly format.  In the paragraph that was provided, there were a number of errors that would cause the reader and anyone else within the academic community to question its legitimacy as a scholarly work.

First of all there is a glaring grammatical error in the paragraph that could make it difficult for the reader to understand the sentence and it takes away from the legitimacy of the author.  The sentence is written as follows: “And most notably, where only a few years ago people wrote about the “digital divide” between those could afford computers and those who could not, there is almost no discussion along these lines any longer.”  There is a word missing in the phrase “between those could afford”.  This paragraph makes it clear that the author did not take the time to properly revise his or her work, or they are not knowledgeable enough on proper English grammar, which is a completely separate problem from improper revision.  Either way, this sentence causes a problem for the reader in the academic community.

There is also a sentence in the paragraph that has a very informal tone and does not properly fit within a piece of academic writing.  “Poor people can now save enough to buy their families a computer for home and school use.”  First of all, individuals that are poor should never be referred to as “poor people.”  ‘Individuals in poverty’ or another phrase can be substituted to take away any informality and rudeness that was not intended by the author, but may be perceived by the audience.

The final error that is glaring to a scholarly reader is that the final statement in the paragraphed is not properly cited in APA or MLA format.  No page reference is given for the Business Week quote and the name of the source should also be italicized because it is the name of a publication.  These few mistakes cause a problem for the reader in a scholarly community and does not allow for anyone to believe that the author is a credible person to be writing on any scholarly topic.  Careful revision and understanding informal tone will enable the writer to solve the problems of this paragraph.


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