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Guide to Writing in History, 2002

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Professor Mark Damen, Ph.D

Utah State University

Image courtesy of JKim1

Course Description

The medium of history and classics as intellectual disciplines is the written word. Successful students in these fields must be able not only to read but write well. That is, they must be able to receive and impart words with precise meaning. Sloppiness of expression is as detrimental to any historical study as faulty equations are to physics. This guide is designed to help you avoid some of the more obvious pitfalls of misstatement into which students often fall.

Remember that good writing is actually very simple. Essentially, it requires only two things: preparation (i.e. awareness of pertinent data and the construction of a viable argument) and the precise, direct expression of your thoughts. Thus, the advice below is broken into two parts, Style and Content.

Copyright 2008, by the Contributing Authors. Cite/attribute Resource . Damen, M., factpetersen. (2008, February 12). Guide to Writing in History. Retrieved January 08, 2011, from Free Online Course Materials — USU OpenCourseWare Web site: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons License