Resources to help improve your reading, writing, thinking, learning, and research skills.
General Writing Resources
NPS Graduate Writing Center & Writing Criteria
Writing Tips and Tricks
- U.S. Army Intelligence Center of Excellence, Writer’s Handbook
- Grammar Girl, “Quick and Dirty Tips“
- Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL)
- The Elements of Style
- Motivation while Researching and Writing
- Seven Deadly Sins of Writing
- Federal Government, Plain Language Guidelines
- United States Air Force, The Tongue and the Quill
- George Lober, The Writing Process
- Fish, Stanley. How to Write a Sentence and How to Read One. New York: HarperCollins, 2012.
- Pinker, Steven. The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century. New York: Viking, 2014.
Adult Learning Resources
Here are some articles that previous participants in the program — especially those who have been out of the academic world for awhile — found helpful. If you find other useful resources, please forward them to the instructor so they can be added to this site.
- John Dunlosk et al., “What Works, What Doesn’t,” Scientific American Mind (September/October 2013): 47-53, Box.
- Peter A. Facione, “Critical Thinking: What It Is and Why It Counts” (Insight Assessment, 2011), Box.
- Deborah Knott, “Critical Reading towards Critical Writing” (Toronto: New College Writing Centre, 2001), Box.
- Richard Paul and Linda Elder, The Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking Concepts and Tools (Tomales, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking, 2006), Box.
- David T. Moore, Critical Thinking and Intelligence Analysis, Occasional Paper 14 (Washington, DC: National Defense Intelligence College, March 2007), Box.
- Fiona Patterson, “Provoking Students into Thinking,” no. 1 (February 2007): 79-82, Box.
- Learning Strategies Development, “Critical Reading for Graduate Students” (Kingston, Ontario: Queen’s University, n.d.), Box.
- Center for Writing, “Student Writing Support Quicktips” (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota , 2004), Box.
- Miriam E. Sweeney, “How to Read for Grad School,” Miriam E. Sweeney (blog), June 20, 2012, https://miriamsweeney.net/2012/06/20/readforgradschool/.
- Jeffrey M. Zacks and Rebecca Treiman, “Sorry, You Can’t Speed Read,” New York Times, April 15, 2016, https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/17/opinion/sunday/sorry-you-cant-speed-read.html?smid=tw-share&referer=https://t.co/IObQMOXU0E.
Attribution, Citations, and Sources
- The Chicago Manual of Style Online
- Chicago Manual of Style/Turabian Citation Guidance
- Chicago Manual of Style Online: Chicago Style Citation Quick Guide
- Dudley Knox Library, “Citation Tool Comparison”
- The Essential Skill of Crap Detecting Alan Shapiro | Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility
- Crap Detection 101 : Howard Rheingold : City Brights
- Phillip Webb, “Assessing the Credibility of Online Sources”
- “The Tricks Propagandists Use to Beat Science”
- “The Death of Expertise”
- Farnam Street, “The Difference between Amateurs and Professionals”
Microsoft Word Refresher
Procrastination and Writer’s Block
- Megan McArdle, “Why Writers Are the Worst Procrastinators”
- Tim Urban, “Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator”
- Tim Herrera, “Micro Progress and the Magic of Just Getting Started”
- Rebecca Knight, “Staying Focused in a Noisy Open Office”
- Francesca Cirillo, “Pomodoro Technique”
- Dragos Bernat, “11 Free Apps That Will Guarantee to Increase Your Productivity”
- Dustin Wax, “The Ultimate Writing Productivity Resource”
- Ghost, “10 Minute Writing Workouts”
- Farnam Street, “Habits vs. Goals: A Look at the Benefits of a Systematic Approach to Life“
- Defining Critical Thinking
- How Critical Reading and Thinking Can Enhance Your Writing
- The Importance of Critical Thinking
- Critical Thinking and Creative Problem Solving
- Our Concept and Definition of Critical Thinking
- 5 Tips to Improve Your Critical Thinking [Video]
- Critical Thinking [Video]
- Ed Boyden, “How to Think”
- Charles King, “How to Think”
- School of Thought, “Thou Shalt Not Commit Logical Fallacies”
- Farnam Street, “Proximate vs Root Causes: Why You Should Keep Digging to Find the Answer”
- Farnam Street, “How to Spot Bad Science”
- Science Buddies (blog) “A Strong Hypothesis”
- Web Center for Social Research Methods, “Hypotheses”
- “Start with Why” [Ted Talk]
- “Inquiry: Critical Thinking across the Disciplines”
- Argument Mapping: Claims and Reasons
- Argument Mapping
- J. W. Gray, “What is Argument Mapping?”
- Tim van Gelder, “What Is Argument Mapping?”
Innovation and Problem Solving
- How to innovate right now « Scott Berkun
- A Quick Puzzle to Test Your Problem Solving – The New York Times
- Critical Thinking – What It Is and Why It Counts
- Critical Thinking and Intelligence Analysis
- Guide to Rating Critical Thinking
- Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking Concepts & Tools
- Provoking Students Into Thinking
- Writing Critical Analysis Papers
- What’s Wrong With the Scientific Method? Rhett Allain | Wired Science | Wired.com
- Three Science Words We Should Stop Using Rhett Allain | Wired Science | Wired.com
- Well, It’s Just a Theory Rhett Allain | Wired Science | Wired.com
- The Science of Why We Don’t Believe Science Chris Mooney | Mother Jones
- Subjectivity and Objectivity: An Objective Inquiry, D.C. Phillips
- I’m O.K., You’re Biased, Daniel Gilbert – New York Times
- 3 Filters Needed to Think About Problems, Garrett Hardin
- McGrath, Methodology Matters: Doing Research in the Behavioral & Social Sciences
- What’s the Difference Between a Scientific Law and Theory?
- Carroll, “Congratulations. Your Study Went Nowhere”
- Shuttleworth, Establishing Cause and Effect
- Three Keys To Improving Your Strategic Thinking
- Are You A Strategic Thinker? Test Yourself
- Strategic Thinking Defined
- Elements of Strategic Thinking
- Ted Talks
- Wheelan, Charles. Naked Statistics: Stripping the Dread from the Data. New York: Norton, 2013.
Writing Guidance by Assignment Type
- An Introduction to Academic Writing
- Organizing Your Social Sciences Research Paper: Academic Writing Style
- What is an Academic Paper?
- A Summary of Academic Writing
- Blooms taxonomy and balanced writing slides [pptx]
- What Is “Academic” Writing?
- Verb Tenses in Academic Writing, UNC Chapel Hill
Writing a Research Paper
- Kennedy School of Government, “Tips for Writing Analytic Research Papers”
Writing an Opinion Essay
- Writing an Opinion Essay
- An Opinion Essay (Presentation)
- No, It’s Not Your Opinion. You’re Just Wrong [UPDATED]
- Writing Opinion Essays
Writing a Policy Memorandum
- GAO Criteria to Assess Strategies
- How to write a policy memo
- Steps in policy analysis
- Tips on writing a policy memo
- CHDS Thesis Proposal Template
- CHDS Thesis Template
- Template Setup Doc (for Either Template)
- Template Setup Wiki
- University of Southern California, “The Literature Review“
- Purdue Owl, “Reverse Outlining“
- University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Reverse Outlines: A Writer’s Technique for Examining Organization“
- Purdue Owl, “Annotated Bibliographies”
- Buttram, MacMillan, and Koch, “Comparing the Annotated Bibliography to the Literature Review”
- Offenhauer and Buchalter, “Teen Dating Violence: A Literature Review and Annotated Bibliography” [Sample Literature Review]
- DARPA, “Heilmeyer Catechism”
- Maggie Koerth-Baker, “Meet Science: What Is ‘Peer Review’?”
- Formal Sentence Outline Format
- Revising Your Paper
- Washington University, “Tips for Reviewing Your Paper for Revision”
- Reverse Outlining Video (UNC Writing Center)
- Purdue Owl, “Reverse Outlining: An Exercise for Taking Notes and Revising Your Work“
- Revising Drafts (UNC Writing Center)
- Reorganizing Drafts (UNC Writing Center)
- Building an Outline (.doc)