This semester has been an interesting one for me. Of all my classes, I’d have to say that this one has probably been the best, albeit frustrating at times. I’ve been able to learn a lot about what my future may hold when it comes to school and my professional career, mostly through my interview with Dr. Camille Broadway. I genuinely had many questions for her and it was good to clear some of my uncertainties up. I’m still, and never will be, 100% certain what my future as an academic writer will hold, but I definitely have a better idea of it after this class.
Getting into your questions, I first had to think about who exactly the audience in journalism is, and it varies. For instance, the journal I read was obviously geared towards professors teaching journalism, which is vastly different from writing in the field of journalism. What I can generalize, though, is that fact-checking is always going to be important, especially in the professional realm, because the audience is instilling a certain trust that the writer knows their stuff. In order to be successful in this field, I’ve learned you must also know how to do good research, that you should have your writing checked multiple times by different people, and most importantly, to accept that there will always be someone out there who is a better writer than you are. As far as the expectations I feel I can meet, I know that I will be solid in the grammatical and ethical standards. I definitely need to work on developing a more thorough research technique and also lend more of my work to peer revision.
It is important to know your strengths and weaknesses in as many aspects of your being as possible, but as it pertains to academic research, my strengths are as follows. I know that I’m good at locating the right information and being able to incorporate and, if necessary, explain how it relates to my work. As far as weaknesses go, I feel like I need to diversify my selection of resources, as I often take the easy way out by only including internet resources. Another weakness for me would be the actual citation, as I still get confused about how to incorporate and properly cite things within my papers. My familiarity with research within the field is definitely stronger than it was at the beginning of the semester, but that’s a given. Mostly, I’ve noticed that research within the field focuses on emerging and changing technology, as well as teaching and media ethics.
Another set of strengths and weaknesses that is important are my strengths and weaknesses as an actual academic writer. One strength, that can also be considered a weakness depending on the application, is that I tend to draw out my thoughts when writing, so I end up saying a lot about a little. Among my other strengths are my spelling and grammatical skills. As far as weaknesses go, I feel like I sometimes struggle with organization, as well as having hesitance about getting my copy edited, and having overall confidence about what I’ve written. This confidence issue is one that I understand plagues most writers and it’s just something I’ll have to work on as I continue to grow as a writer. The best resources I can think of would be first practicing writing as much as possible and second reading as much as possible, from all different sorts of literary works, articles, and reports.
I know that I still have a long way to go as a writer, and I also know that I will never stop improving. This course has played its part in helping me further figure out where I want to go in life, as well as some of the tools I’m going to need to get there. Overall, I am going to focus most on practicing the craft, reading, and learning as much as I possibly can bear to.