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Business Writing vs. Academic Writing: What’s the Difference?
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Regardless of particular style or format, written information has the same goal: to present information to an audience in a clear way.
So, that must mean good writing is good writing, right?
Not exactly. When you compare business writing to academic writing, for example, there are actually some significant differences that you should be aware of.
Familiarizing yourself with what separates these two distinct writing styles will help you write in a way that’s the most effective for your intended purpose and audience.
Think about it this way: You wouldn’t give a technical manual to a child and call it a children’s book. The same holds true for business and academic writing—there are key differences in style and structure.
So, what exactly makes business writing different from academic writing? Well, roll up your sleeves, because we’re diving into some of those key differentiators below.
What is business writing?
There’s a lot of writing that happens in the business world. But, if you think this means you need to be a skilled author capable of stringing together eloquent prose and flowery language, think again.
As this fact sheet from the University of Oregon explains, business writing is transactional. It describes what actions need to be taken to solve problems, achieve company goals, and so on.
From reports to emails to press releases, business writing comes in many shapes and sizes. The recipients of business writing also run the gamut—from board members to colleagues to customers to shareholders.
Because of that, there are tons of smaller details that separate business writing from academic writing. But, the overarching one you should remember is the purpose: Business writing is intended to direct action.
Want to learn even more about business writing? Check out our business writing course !
What is academic writing?
So, what about academic writing? Take a minute to think about the various writing projects—like research papers and book reports—that you needed to complete during your schooling. You’ll quickly realize that the intention of academic writing is far different from business writing.
Rather than educating and informing others, the goal of academic writing is for students to educate themselves. They write to learn as well as to showcase what they’ve learned—and often earn a grade for doing so.
Some academic writing is then utilized to inform others (like a thesis, research paper, or dissertation). However, the original purpose of that writing work was to have the author learn something through the writing process.
In most cases, students write these academic pieces for one particular audience member: their professor or instructor.
Business writing vs. academic writing: how they differ
Obviously, the purposes behind business writing and academic writing are quite different. But what about those other details that we mentioned earlier?
Let’s dig into the numerous other differences that come up when you compare business writing to academic writing.
1. Tone and style
While both styles of writing can be somewhat formal from time to time, academic writing is typically much more so and is written from a third person perspective . Students often receive a grade on their academic writing, so you can bet there isn’t slang or jargon of any type.
However, because business writing is more oriented toward action, it leans less on long sentences and a complex vocabulary and instead focuses on short and clear sentences (and frequently, bullet points)—making it seem far less rigid and formal than academic writing.
With business writing, the audience needs to be able to extrapolate the meaning of the text and the resulting action steps without needing to wade through complicated sentences and lengthy paragraphs.
Tone and style of academic writing:
Formal, with longer sentences and well-developed paragraphs. Here’s an example:
According to recent research, audiences are far more responsive to advertising messages that portray models and actors within their own demographic. With this reasoning, one can assume that organizations should employ a diverse range of actors and models to appear in their advertising campaigns to ensure that these commercial messages resonate with a large percentage of viewers.
Tone and style of business writing:
Emphasis on keeping things short, clear, and as actionable as possible. Here’s an example:
Research shows that audiences connect more with advertising messages that showcase people in their own demographic. We should explore talent firms with diverse pools of models and actors.
2. Document structure
Reflect on most of the writing you did during your education, and this common essay format will probably pop into your head: introduction, body, conclusion. That was the tried and true formula you leaned on to complete most of your academic writing.
However, business writing has far more flexibility—mostly because there are so many different types and styles of business writing.
This means that writing in a business setting offers far more wiggle room to structure the writing to the appropriate purpose and audience. It doesn’t always stick to a specific approach the way most academic writing does.
Structure of academic writing:
Introduction, body of the written work, and a conclusion.
Structure of Business Writing:
Varies greatly depending on what you’re writing. An email will be structured much differently than a performance review, for example.
We touched on this briefly already, but the intended audience is another major component that separates business and academic writing.
With academic writing, students write for one crucial audience member: their instructor, who will be dishing out a grade on that written assignment. Occasionally other people will review that written work, but it’s almost always someone else who works within academia.
Business writing, in contrast, can be read and reviewed by a huge array of people—from colleagues to customers to board members to shareholders to competitors to regulatory agencies.
The list goes on and on. This is partly because the aim is to keep business writing simple and straightforward. When you aren’t sure whose eyeballs will eventually land on it, it’s best to make things explicitly clear, so that all parties can comprehend it.
Audience of academic writing:
Audience of business writing:
4. Document design
This is another area where academic writing is far more rigid than business writing—mostly because the design of these written works is often dictated by the instructor. You remember the good ol’ days of 12-point Times New Roman font, double spacing, and appropriately-sized margins, right?
Again, with business writing, authors have far more flexibility to design their work in a way that’s most suitable to their purpose and intended audience.
Perhaps that’s a highly-visual business report with lots of graphs and charts to illustrate a point. Or, maybe it’s a one-page document with headings, subheadings, and bullet points to allow for easy skimming and scanning.
The design of business writing comes in many shapes and sizes, while academic writing typically falls into a standardized mold.
Design of academic writing:
Highly standardized with requirements for text style, font size, spacing, and margins.
Design of business writing:
Flexible, depending on the purpose of the document and the audience.
5. Writing process
If you’d ask me what my writing process looked like for any academic papers, I’d tell you this: It was many late nights spent bleary-eyed alone in front of my computer, with a mug of lukewarm coffee by my side.
Sound familiar? Much of the academic writing process takes place totally alone. The assignment is dished out by the professor, and the student is tasked with cranking out that document by the deadline in order to earn an individual grade.
Things don’t work that way in the business world, where writing is a far more collaborative process. When working on business writing, you’ll likely lean on the insights and expertise of numerous different people both inside and outside your organization to pull together something that makes sense.
Additionally, the process of writing an academic paper typically involved plenty of solo research. But, in a business environment, you usually tackle writing with far more existing context and background information received through meetings, previous projects, and other efforts. Most of the time, you aren’t approaching that subject totally cold.
Process for academic writing:
Research and writing is done mostly solo.
Process for Business Writing:
A collaborative effort, with plenty of groundwork already laid for the author.
6. Citations and sources
Sigh, citations. I remember cringing every time I needed to put together that detailed resources page for my academic papers. You remember the ones, right? They included everything from the authors' names, to the published date, to the volume number. The thought alone still sends a chill down my spine.
With academic writing, students are required to cite their sources using a highly standardized format—often MLA or APA style .
However, the rules for citing sources are far more lax with business writing and can often vary greatly depending on your company’s norms and regulations for quoting various sources.
Citations and sources for academic writing:
Highly standardized and regulated.
Citations and Sources for Business Writing:
Can vary based on the rules set by the individual company.
7. Legal considerations
While students who produce academic writing absolutely need to avoid plagiarism of any kind, it’s not often that their written work will be used in any sort of court cases, legal proceedings, or anything of the sort.
But, in a business setting? People should be aware that the written work they produce is likely now the property of their employer and thus could be used as evidence in this manner if the need arises—whether it’s something like a wrongful termination lawsuit or even an audit.
For that reason, ensuring accuracy is crucial whenever you’re writing, but particularly when you’re producing a document for your organization.
Legal considerations for academic writing:
Avoiding plagiarism is the top legal concern.
Legal Considerations for business writing:
Operate with the assumption that whatever you write could come back in a variety of legal matters. I won’t say it’s common, but it’s always better to play it safe!
Over to you
As we’ve highlighted here, there are plenty of differences between academic writing and business writing. In fact, this isn’t even all of them—we’ve barely scratched the surface.
You can dig into even more elements that separate these two styles with this fact sheet from the University of Oregon . It does a great job of breaking things down in an easily digestible way, and we used it as a resource for many of the differences we outlined here.
If you’re eager to learn even more about business writing in particular and how you can level up your own game at work? Make sure to check out our business writing course to dive into the nitty-gritty of how to be a top-notch writer in a business setting.
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Kat is a writer specializing in career, self-development, and productivity topics. When she escapes her computer, she enjoys reading, hiking, golfing, and dishing out tips for prospective freelancers on her website.
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Business Writing vs Academic Writing: Four Primary Differences
Some might say that the only difference between academic and business writing is the fact that the former is practiced by scholars while the latter by professionals. However, when perused closely, one can discern some stark as well as nuanced demarcation between the two. For individuals, such as college graduates, who need to occasionally shift between academic writing and business writing, knowing these differences can help them format their respective documents appropriately.
To the layman, the business writing vs academic writing dilemma might seem not worth much thought. Rather, citing the similarities they share in terms of tone and diction, these two writing styles would appear similar to an extent. One might even say that the only difference between academic and business writing is the fact that the former is practiced by scholars while the latter by professionals.
However, when perused closely, one can discern some stark as well as nuanced demarcation between the two. For individuals, such as college graduates, who need to occasionally shift between academic writing and business writing, knowing these differences can help them format their respective documents appropriately.
Business writing vs academic writing: Key differences
Below are enlisted some primary differences between the academic and business writing styles. These differences are primarily based on factors such as the purpose of writing, degree of formality, the intricacy of the language, and the audience.
One of the more apparent distinctions between business writing and academic writing concerns the very motive behind their implementation.
Writers employ the academic writing style when they require to showcase their scholarly capabilities. This writing style finds use in research papers, essays, dissertations, and other scholarly texts mandated by educational institutions.
Writers regularly exercising the academic writing style also enrich their research and learning prowess.
The purpose of academic writing is, thus, to create knowledge-rich texts while exploring the subject matter.
Business writing finds use in drafting professional documents such as business letters, emails, financial reports, and the ilk. Thus, it is also called professional writing.
Business documents prioritize explicitness over the usage of fancy words as they, at times, have an array of subsequent readers. Hence, business writing is relatively work-oriented and commands the readers to definitely and sometimes immediately address a document's contents.
To summarize, business writing emphasizes practicality over theoretical appraisal.
Language is another writing aspect that sets academic writing apart from its professional counterpart.
Both writing styles demand the usage of language that is formal, sophisticated, and exudes respect and seriousness. However, in the case of academic writing, the degree of formality is marginally, and in some cases significantly, higher. And understandably so, since academics, while writing their manuscripts, need to use a relatively higher amount of jargon .
The academic writing process is comparatively more demanding as writers need to refer to a plethora of credible literature to furnish their texts. Business writing, instead, regurgitates a lot of the formal expressions while accommodating factual information in the text. As such, it is the more approachable of the two.
Also, unlike academic writing, business writing does not dogmatically prohibit the use of first and second pronouns.
Complicated sentence structures are another linguistic factor that differentiates academic and professional writing. Although there are no strict statutes regarding the usage of long sentences in professional writing, readers look down upon them. This is because business writing is comparatively more straightforward and less persuasive.
Hence, to the keen eye, language can be an overt identifier of writing style. But at the same time, the uninformed individuals might not observe the same linguistic differences as apparently.
3. Formatting and document structure
The third factor that segregates academic and professional writing is the document's structure and the formatting requirements.
Academic writing and business writing both abide by different layouts and formatting styles. Academic writers typically arrange their documents as per the IMRaD structure . However, this structure is subject to changes if the teacher or the supervisor states it.
Also, academic writers need to observe the APA, MLA, or Chicago formatting styles for their manuscripts. Failing to do so can welcome some severe repercussions regardless of how well-written the document is.
Business writers, too, employ specific layouts for different professional documents. But these layouts are outrightly different from their academic counterparts.
For instance, while writing business letters, professional writers use the block style for formatting their letters. Semi-block and modified block are the other two formatting styles for business letters.
The intent of any writing, whether it is academic or professional, is to address the readers. Thus, for a significant part, writers need to mold their documents according to the reading requirements of their audience. It is these requirements that further isolate academic writing from professional writing.
Since academic writing is the more complex of the two, writers presume their readers to be well-read and aware of the context of their document. This also implies that academic readers are under less temporal constraints since scholarly texts require ample time to study.
Business documents, conversely, are aimed at readers across all literacy levels. In other words, the writers have a vague idea about their readership.
Also, since a professional environment is competitive and fast-paced, readers are under stricter time constraints.
Business writing vs academic writing: Synopsis
The rationale behind the business writing vs academic writing narrative primarily pillars itself on the above-mentioned differences. Although these distinctions are not exhaustive, they offer readers a premise on which they can base some more differences.
Academic writing and business writing both intend to inform the readers about their contents comprehensively. However, it is the approach they take and the requisites they fulfill that sets them apart.
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This article discusses the main differences between business writing and academic writing. To give you an opportunity to practice proofreading, we have left a few spelling, punctuation, or grammatical errors in the text. See if you can spot them! If you spot the errors correctly, you will be entitled to a 10% discount.
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The Difference Between Academic Writing And Business Writing
Contributed by shirley taylor july 13, 2017.
In all my years of teaching business writing skills, I’ve often been asked the question, “Why don’t they teach us this before we leave college or university?” Yes indeed, why not?
There is a huge difference between academic and business writing. Here are some of the main ones:
- Academic writing is formal, often using the third person and passive voice. Business writing is less formal, more direct and concise, using active voice.
- Long sentences are fine in academic writing, but they are very cumbersome in business writing.
- Students need to show a wide vocabulary so they use complex words and long sentences. Business writers must get their ideas across quickly, so they use simple words and short sentences.
Let’s Look At These Differences In More Detail:
Students Write To Demonstrate Learning Schools, colleges, and universities exist to share knowledge and to help students do the same. The writing that students produce in academic settings can best be described as “writing to demonstrate what you have learned.”
Students write to discuss and explore different topics, to argue a case, to demonstrate what they have learned to teachers and professors. They need to prove they can think about and apply what they learned. Students need to persuade readers of a particular theory or develop information gained from research.
The writing that students hand to instructors or professors indicates how their mind works, how much they know, and what they think and feel about particular topics.
In academic writing, students write to demonstrate learning, to impress!
Business Writers Write To Get Things Done In the business world, we write to share information, to solve problems, to propose new strategies, to negotiate contracts, to report progress to stakeholders, etc.
When we write in business – to managers, employees, customers, vendors, stakeholders, etc – we need to give clear information and explain what we want or what we want others to do. Business writers often recommend specific courses of action to their readers. Therefore, writing in business contexts can best be described as “writing to do.”
In business, we need to get things done quickly, so we need to express ourselves clearly! Clarity is key – and this should be the main focus in all business writing.
In business writing, we write to get things done – to express!
Shirley Taylor is a popular keynote speaker and communication skills trainer. She delivers motivational and success keynotes like ‘Rock Your Role In Our High-Tech World’ and ‘Grow Your Business By Connecting Your Dots’. She is author of 12 books, including Model Business Letters, Emails and Other Business Documents seventh edition, which has been translated into 16 languages and sold over half a million copies worldwide. Shirley is a high-energy and high-content speaker who engages with audiences quickly, and shows them how the strategies she teaches can easily be applied both personally and in the workplace. Her aim is to educate, inspire, inform and motivate individuals and teams to make a difference in the workplace and to communicate and lead with heart. Shirley was President of Asia Professional Speakers Singapore, and currently serves as 2017-18 President of the Global Speakers Federation. Check out Shirley's popular signature business writing programme .
© 2016 Shirley Taylor. Shirley Taylor of STTS Training is a recognised leading authority on business writing and communication skills. For almost 30 years she has presented keynotes and training programmes that help people and organisations boost communication skills and develop great relationships both orally and in writing. Shirley is bestselling author of 12 books, including Model Business Letters, Emails and Other Business Documents, which has sold half a million copies worldwide and has been translated into many languages. If you would like Shirley to speak at your next event, visit www.shirleytaylor.com .
This post was originally published on Shirley Taylor blog and has been reposted on Executive Lifestyle with the permission of the author. Image Credit: Pexels
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Comparison of Business and Academic Writing
- DESCRIPTION woman doing business and academic writing
- SOURCE baona / E+ / Getty Images
Making a comparison of business and academic writing is important so you can understand the different writing methods and know how to adjust your style as needed. There are more types of academic writing than business writing. The main differences between business writing and academic writing relate to writing style.
Academic writing is work created for an academic purpose. Writing assignments students are required to complete in school are academic in nature. Works created by professors and other academic professionals designed to advance a field of knowledge or be used to teach students are also examples of academic writing .
Academic Style and Tone
To write in the academic style, it’s important to put a lot of research or thought into your writing before you start. An outline can be a helpful tool for good planning. You also need to have a consistent style.
Degree of Formality
Academic writing uses a formal style and typically uses the third person perspective . The focus of the writing is on facts and issues rather than the writer's opinion. The language uses precise words and does not include slang words, jargon or abbreviations.
- Formal writing example - The man made bad choices which caused him to lose money and fame.
- Informal writing example - I think the man's a loser.
The informal example is not precise, uses the first person, has a slang word, and uses a contraction. This would not be appropriate for an academic document.
Academic Writing Formats
Academic writing is intended for an informed audience and is serious in nature. There are a number of different academic writing formats.
- abstract - a short summary of an article, thesis, review, research study, or other long report on a subject or event.
- book report - brief overview of a particular book; common school assignment
- conference paper - papers presented at a scholarly conference; based on research results
- dissertation or thesis - formal research paper prepared by graduate students as a requirement for an advanced degree (A thesis is required for many Master’s degree programs while a dissertation is required of Ph.D. students.)
- essay - brief piece written from the author's personal point of view
- explication - academic critique of a work of literature or other writing
- journal article - article prepared for publication in an academic journal
- research paper - class assignment based on secondary or primary research
- textbook - a book written for academic purposes.
Whatever format you are writing in, it’s important to verify if the school or other academic entity (such as a scholarly journal or conference committee) requires or recommends that writers use a certain style, such as APA style , MLA style or Chicago style .
Business writing includes documents created for a professional purpose. Rather than being used in academia, this type of writing is intended to be used in the business world. The broad goal of business writing is to engage in effective professional communication.
Business Writing Focus
The main requirement and focus of business writing is clarity. Use clear, precise language so the communication is easy to understand. Ideas need to be well developed with examples and details as needed. Use shorter and simpler sentences. Sentences with fewer than 25 words would be ideal.
Use an active voice in business writing rather than a passive voice. An active voice uses action verbs with phrases that are direct and to the point.
- It would be better to start a sentence with a direct saying like “The company lacks...” rather than taking a passive approach with a passive phrase like “What the company may be missing is…”
- Avoid qualifiers like: would be, may be and probably. These words weaken the tone of what you are saying.
- The writing should suggest action instead of focusing on mental states. Instead of saying, "We believe" or "We think" say, "We recommend." This goes along with the active tone of the communication.
The style of business needs to be professional and courteous, but not overly formal. There should not be too many extra words. This is not the place for figurative language . It’s best to be direct and to the point in business writing, avoiding unnecessary adjectives and adverbs. You should also avoid clichés.
Business Writing Formats
Business writing is necessary for all types of documents used to communicate in professional settings. There are many types of business writing formats.
- business email - digital correspondence for business purposes
- business plan - detailed outline of business goals, objectives and strategies
- executive summary - overview of business recommendations
- letter - formal correspondence sent by mail or email on behalf of the business
- memo - internal document to communicate information to team members
- press release - document sent to news media or published online to announce information
- project proposal - request for approval to begin a new project or initiative
- resume - work history document submitting to prospective employers
- technical document - detailed instructions for procedures or equipment
For any piece of business writing, it’s important that the format and content are appropriate for the subject matter and the intended audience.
Business vs. Academic Writing
As you can see, there are a lot of differences between these two styles of writing. There are also some similarities.
Key Differences Between Business and Academic Writing
A few of the most important differences between business and academic writing include:
- Academic writing is more formal than business writing. That doesn’t mean business writing is informal, just that a lesser degree of formality is required than with academic writing.
- Academic writing is written for students, teachers, professors, or scholars. The audience for business writing is quite different. Common audiences for business documents include managers, coworkers, customers, prospective customers, or potential employers.
- Academic writing almost always uses the third person point of view, while business writing can use any point of view. Most business writing is written in second person, but it’s also acceptable to use first or third person in some situations.
- Academic writing focuses primarily on facts, especially in the case of research-based writing and text books. While business writing is typically based on factual information, it often focuses on giving opinions in the form of recommendations.
- Long sentences can be acceptable in academic writing, but tend to be cumbersome in business writing.
- Academic writing requires extensive sourcing and compliance with specific style and formatting requirements. There is more flexibility with how information is presented in business documents.
Similarities of Academic and Professional Writing
Writing is an important form of communication in academia and the business world. Academic writing and professional writing aren’t completely dissimilar. The two types of writing do have a few key points in common.
- Both styles need well-developed ideas that are communicated precisely and clearly.
- The tone is serious in both, whether reporting on research in an academic setting or making recommendations on how to improve a corporation’s profitability.
- Proper grammar and punctuation is very important in both forms of communication.
- It’s important to know how and when to use jargon and relevant abbreviations in both styles. There are a number of common business word abbreviations . In academia, it’s important to properly use degree abbreviations .
Develop Your Writing Skills
Now that you have a better understanding of how business and academic writing compare with one another, it’s a great time to commit to further developing your writing skills. Whether academic writing or business writing is the most relevant to you at this time, you’ll benefit greatly from learning how to communicate more effectively in writing . If you’re in school or work as an educator, focus on building your academic writing skills . If you’re part of the business world or are seeking to join it, focus on important business writing skills .
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Ignite Your Thoughts
Business Writing Vs. Academic Writing
Updated: April 22, 2023 by Elena Smith • 4 min read
What Is Academic Writing?
Academic written work alludes to a specific style of articulation. Qualities of scholarly written work include:
A formal tone
Utilization of the third individual as opposed to the first-individual point of view Clear spotlight on the issue or theme as opposed to the creator’s assessment.
Exact word decision
Essayists utilizing the formal academic style keep away from language, slang, and truncations.
Academic Writing Pro offers scholarly writing services at a very reasonable price. Academic written work is a formal composition. Numerous beginner authors experience difficulty differentiating casual keeping touch with one from the others from formal written work. They turn to occasional written work since it’s less demanding and more commonplace.
Qualities of occasional written work incorporate idioms and language, writing in the primary individual or putting forth “I” expressions, putting forth individual coordinate expressions, and uncertain word decisions. In the examination, the most formal written work of all can be found in official records.
A casual composition is excellent for journal sections, sites, individual written work, letters, or messages to companions. In any case, scholars taking a shot at papers for school, school application articles, relevant papers, examining documents, meeting introductions, and business propositions, for the most part, utilize a more formal style similar to wearing a suit or dress to go to a wedding.
Here are cases of casual and formal written work.
Casual written work: I believe he’s a washout.
Formal written work: Macbeth’s poor decisions cause him to lose all he holds dear: youngsters, spouses, companions, crown, and lord.
Examining business and academic composition is essential so you can comprehend the diverse written work techniques. There are a higher number of kinds of scholarly written work than business composing, and the fundamental contrasts between the two identify with the style of the composition.
The difference between Business Writing and Academic Writing .
Academic writing style, focus, and formality.
The style of academic written work is formal and utilizations the third-individual viewpoint. The focal point of the written word is on realities and issues instead of the essayist’s sentiment. The dialect utilizes exact words and does exclude slang words, language, or shortenings.
A case of formal written work:
The man settled on awful decisions, which made him lose cash and distinction.
A case of casual composition would be:
I think the man’s a failure. The second one isn’t exact, utilizes the principle individually, has a slang word, and uses a constriction.
To write in the academic style, you have to put a ton of thought into your written work before you begin. A blueprint can be a useful instrument for good arranging. It would help if you likewise had a predictable style. On the off chance you are composing for a school, verify if they suggest a specific form of writing, for example, APA, MLA, or Chicago.
Academic written work is expected from an educated crowd and is not kidding in nature. Here is a portion of the organizations that join academic written work with clarifications of a few.
- Unique – This is a short synopsis of an article, proposal, audit, or other long description of a subject or occasion.
- Books and book reports
- Gathering paper – This paper is introduced at a meeting.
- Exposition or theory – This is composed as a necessity for a propelled degree.
- Exposition – A paper is a short piece composed of the creator’s close-to-home perspective.
- Elucidation – This is typically a short work clarifying a piece of a specific work.
- Research article or research paper – The paper is any longer than the article.
Business writing style, focus, and formality.
The fundamental prerequisite and focal point of business writing or business composing is lucidity. Precise dialect must be utilized, so the correspondence is anything but trying to peruse. The style should be proficient and respectful yet not excessively formal.
Thoughts should be very much created with cases and subtle elements as required. It should not be an excessive number of additional words, similar to descriptive words and modifiers, and adages are a bit much.
There is substantially more associated with academic composition than with business composing.
Here are the configurations that need the best possible business composing style:
- Business email
- Public statements
- Official synopses
- Resume composing
Here is a portion of the things you have to recall about business composing:
Utilize a functioning voice, not uninvolved. A functioning voice utilizes activity verbs. Here is a case:
Passive=”What the organization is missing”
Active=”The organization lacks.”
Utilize shorter and more straightforward sentences. Sentences with under 25 words would be perfect.
Keep away from qualifiers like: would be, might be, and presumably. These words debilitate the tone of what you are stating.
The composition ought to recommend activity as opposed to concentrating on mental states. Rather than saying, “We accept,” or “We think,” say, “We prescribe” This obliges the dynamic tone of the correspondence.
Business versus Academic Writing
It should be obvious; there is a considerable measure of contrast between these two styles of composing.
Academic composition is formal, utilizing the third individual, while business composing is less formal and can use any perspective.
Academic written work centers around realities, while business composing gives feelings.
Long sentences are okay in academic written work; however, they are lumbering in business composing.
In examining a business and academic written work, there are a couple of focuses in like manner. The two styles require all-around created thoughts that are imparted utterly and obviously.
The tone is not kidding in both, in the case of providing details regarding exploration or rolling out suggestions for improvement. Finally, legal language and accentuation are vital in the two types of correspondence.
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Editor at AcademicWritingPro WittySparks Network Contributors
Elena Smith is an editor at AcademicWritingPro, a website for students that helps with academic writing services. Besides being an editor, she is a regular contributor at many other sites. Elena has been a content writer for five years, and now she helps people with tips and tricks on academic writing.
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Top 10 Difference Between Academic & Business Writing
In a categorical context, an academic or business writing, should both convey their message clearly to the reader. However, these types of writings differ in nature as they belong to two varying fields. Their purpose, audience, and subject matter are some of the aspects that do not match each other. To explore these and further differences, we have laid out all the major factors that set them apart.
1. Prompt Academic writings are written by students who are prompted by their teachers. The assignment is designed by the instructors. Academic writing is basically more about completing the requirements of the teacher. Business writers, on the other hand, write upon personal initiative or when their organization needs them to. A professional writer is at liberty to define and create their own writing tasks.
2. Purpose The purpose of academic content is for students to demonstrate how much knowledge they have gained. Teachers expect essays or research papers to reflect everything learned in class. A student needs to show that they are able to apply different concepts through their writing.
Business writings are meant to make things happen like attract customers, report sales, and solve issues among many others. Unlike academic writing, it does not monitor or develop the growth of the writer’s potential.
3. Audience The audience of academic writing is most often just a professor. Sometimes experts of a particular field might read it too. But business writing has a vast array of target audiences. It consists of stakeholders, clients, employees, managers, agencies, lawyers, and more. Non-academic writing caters to the interests and needs of a lot of people.
4. Genre Term papers, journals, essays, oral reports, exam answers, etc. all come under the category of academic writing. Business writing consists of memos, proposals, letters, reports, business plans , and performance evaluations. Audit reports, contracts, marketing plans, handbooks, and manuals also belong to the same genre.
5. Ownership The sole owner of an academic piece is the student who has written it. The failure or success of the writing only affects its owner. While a business writer is creating content for the company. Therefore, anything they write is owned by the company. It might often include confidential and vital information.
6. Constraints Academic writing is more flexible in most cases. Through the writing process, a student is free to choose the environment they want to write in. They also have the independence to show their own perspective as long as they stay within the premises of the topic.
As a business writer meeting, urgent deadlines is crucial. These deadlines are set by employers to cater to the needs of their company. There are many distractions at the workplace where business content is written. Moreover, the writer is rarely allowed to include their own honest opinion on the material.
7. Process Students have to complete an assignment on their own unless it is a group project. Once finished the writing is delivered straight to the instructor. So, the whole process does not have many people involved. A business document usually goes through various hands to provide feedback before being published. Professionals often have to work in tandem to compose effective business writing.
8. Structure This difference might be one of the most significant of all. An academic paper must have an introduction with a thesis statement, a body, and a conclusion. The body lays out all the arguments connected to the thesis. And lastly, the conclusion sums it up and paves the way for a future study. This sort of writing is based on the requirements of the subject, thesis, and the teacher’s expectations.
The structure of business writing is entirely different. It includes a table of contents, company description, executive summary, industry/strategic analysis, and recommendations. It is based on what the audience needs to know or what they should do.
9. Content An academic writer can add any point to their work, that is relevant and helps in supporting their thesis. A business document is bound to only include information that the readers need to be informed of. The rest of it is omitted or included in an appendix.
10. Design Students have to follow the academic format given to them by their instructor. The content usually has to be double spaced, with 12-point font, page numbers, and a title. It creates a blocky and dense style that has paragraph indentations. A business document should be attractive in the visual sense. Furthermore, it allows its readers two ways of reading the document: skimming or observing in detail.
A business writing has very often white spaces incorporated into its structure. The headings and subheadings are prominent and information is listed out as bullet points. Images like logos, charts, graphs, photos, or maps can also be included in a business document.
These were the 10 major differences between academic and business writing. One is certain to come across both of these writing genres at some point in their life. So, it is important to know the basic differences in order to develop the skills for each of them. When writing for the business you need to mold your writing style according to the target audience. Your basic goal is to be able to deliver a concise message in the correct tone to the reader. Paragraphs need to be no more than eight lines longer in print form to make it easier to read through.
While writing for academic purposes, you need to be more concerned about stating your ideas in the strongest way possible. The more learned you are about the field, the better your arguments will be. It can be quite lengthy, unlike a business document, which should be brief to keep the reader’s attention engaged. To enhance your professional writing skills, it is a good idea to enlist in a business writing course. They give you a detailed insight on what would please your manager and make your writing impactful.
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