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Intended Learning Outcome:

To improve criticality in academic writing


To encourage students to write in an academic style, you can set them small writing tasks in class. Using a list of critical sentence starters can prompt students to think more deeply about the subject.


Set a short writing task based on some knowledge they have been learning in recent sessions. You may need to have a brief revision session first.

Show students the Sentence Starters list and ask for some examples of how they can be used to create sentences about one of the given topics.

Ask students to write for a set time, say 10 minutes, on the given topic using the list to help shape their writing.


You could have different headings so a few subjects are covered in the session or you could repeat this process over a few weeks leading up to assessment time.

You may want to scaffold this with extra information on the knowledge to be written about.


Large Group Teaching:

This is a solo activity however you could get students to review each others work in small groups.

Online Teaching:


Students are confident at writing on a critically reflective level.

Next Steps:

Get students to come up with their own sentence starters using the READ Backwards TLA.

Links to other activities:

Further reading:



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