Course Description

Improve Your Writing Skills for Graduate School Success: the Introduction to Graduate Writing Online Course is Ideal for International Scholars

For international students attending a Master’s or Doctoral (Ph.D.) program in the U.S., communicating through writing and presenting research are required skills, whatever the discipline.

Offered through the University of San Diego’s English Language Academy, Introduction to Graduate Writing is an online graduate-level writing course that provides international scholars with the background, instruction, and practice needed to successfully write research papers.

Who is the Graduate Writing Skills Course For? 

Introduction to Graduate Writing is designed for non-native, English-speaking international students who wish to prepare for the rigors of writing research papers in a graduate-level academic program at a U.S. college or university, but who prefer to do so in an online, asynchronous format. Even though others may also benefit from this course, it is primarily geared toward international scholars with an advanced proficiency in English.

Course Details

Course Format: This course is offered in an asynchronous, online format.

Curriculum: This online course is made up of seven one-week modules.

Instructors:  USD faculty, experienced in online teaching techniques, provide a stimulating online learning environment.  All instructors hold a Master's degree or higher.

Program Requirements: Advanced level of English proficiency.

Course Options

Course Date Units Price

What You Will Learn

Our graduate-level writing skills course is laser-focused on teaching participants how to write academic essays, specifically research papers. To get the most out of the course, students should already have solid writing skills and be ready to take the next step.

Introduction to Graduate Writing will cover:

  • The style and language of graduate writing
  • Understanding genre (form, content, and style of writing)
  • Conducting research and evaluating sources
  • Understanding APA style, commonly used in academic writing
  • Writing with sources and attribution
  • Synthesizing sources/annotating a bibliography
  • And more


Professional development courses offered by the University of San Diego’s Division of Professional & Continuing Education are taught by faculty that possess a depth and breadth of academic and real-world professional experience.

Why USD?

PCE nurtures key partnerships on the local, national and international level to better serve working professionals who seek to enhance or build their careers, as well as with their employers to help achieve their highest value and potential. Contact us today to learn more.

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Learning Method Information

Courses offer a convenient, yet rigorous style of learning that allows you to structure your education to suit your schedule while keeping you on pace toward achieving your educational.

Online Fixed-Date

Online Fixed-Date: Online fixed-date courses offer a convenient, yet rigorous style of learning that enables you to collaborate with your instructor and other students in a shared, online learning environment. These courses have fixed start and finish dates, but as an online student you will have 24/7 online access to your classroom assignments, syllabus and course resources. Our online fixed-date courses allow you to work on your assignments anytime, although you are required to complete the assignments by specific dates.

How is the learning structured? In an online fixed-date course, you and your classmates will proceed through the curriculum together, collaborating in a shared learning experience. Each online fixed-date course is asynchronous, meaning that you can work on your assignments anytime, although required to complete the assignments by specific dates. The course is designed with learning modules where all of the content is grouped into weekly assignments. Each module covers one or more topics. Within each of the learning modules, you can expect the following components:

  • Module introduction that outlines what you can expect to learn in the module.
  • Required readings (textbook, articles, journals, etc.) and presentations (audio and/or video).
  • Assignments with due dates (which may include: written assignments, journal entries, research, blogs, etc.) based on the readings and presentations.
  • Discussion forum where you answer prompts from the instructor and interact with your classmates.
  • Module conclusion to review the topics and what you should have learned.
  • Typically, there is a final project, paper, or exam due in the last module that culminates all of the topics covered in each of the learning modules. You’ll find that the design of the learning modules has a rhythm to help you manage your time in the course.

Key Benefits of English Language Academy Courses

Dynamic, Practical Language Skills

Our individualized, skill-based placement system stimulates dynamic learning for students of varying levels of language proficiency with instruction that is tailored to their unique needs.

Sense of Community

Our faculty and staff engage students from around the globe in an enriching, high-quality educational experience where they also build friendships that help stimulate academic success.

Invested in Your Success

Our mission is to help each student thrive while developing the English language skills that position them to achieve personal, professional and academic goals.