Professor Pedantic 教授的考究學問
The professor awaits your query on academic writing, though in all honesty, he doesn’t have a lot of time for you. He is a tenured full professor and working on yet another magnificent academic tome. Even so, he has graciously consented to entertain your question. Submit it and prepare to be edified.

QUESTION: My classroom instructor tells me that my papers are disjointed and disconnected. I read them and I think my ideas are sound and my writing clear. I don’t understand what more he wants from me. Can you help?

Well, I don’t know if I can help you or not. Perhaps the problem is merely one of communication. Do you understand anything your instructor tells you? If not, you might think seriously about switching to a discipline you more easily grasp and your instructor more effectively teaches. However, before you consider giving up, let me suggest that the problem might be that you are talking about apples while your instructor is talking about oranges.
我不確定我能不能幫上忙,也許問題只是簡單的溝通不良。你真的理解教授所說的每句話嗎?如果答案 為否,或許你該慎重考慮,是不是該轉到你更能理解的科目,或是對你來說更有效果的教學方式。不過在真的放棄之前,我認為問題也許出在你和教授各彈各調—你 說的是一回事,他心裡想的又是另一回事。

It well may be that your ideas are perfectly sound—perhaps even sagacious—and your writing as clear as glass. That is not what your instructor finds objectionable. Rather, the instructor’s apparent complaint is that regardless of your writing’s clarity and your thinking’s sagacity, they do not come together into a holistic document. Your papers apparently are collections of thoughts and words that wander to and fro inconclusively. Academic papers are not intended to be pointless.
你的文章概念很可能完全沒問題—搞不好還相當出色—甚至你的內容就像玻璃般表達的一清二楚。教授有意見的部分應 該是,儘管你的寫作文句流暢,想法表達聰敏,卻未能完善地將所有概念組織成有意義、有目標的一篇文章。很顯然地,你的論文只是湊齊了許多想法與文字,卻讓 它們在文章中游走沒有定位,也沒有結論。漫無目的,肯定無法造就一篇好的學術論文。

What your instructor is looking for in your papers, and not finding, are transitional phrases and paragraphs that connect your ideas into a theme that progressively builds toward a conclusion. Unless your individual thoughts are linked to one another in this way, they are orphans. They may be handsome thoughts, but, unlinked, they have no relation to the other thoughts in your paper. Consequently, they indeed are… disconnected and disjointed. Talk to your instructor.
你的教授在文章裡想要找尋卻大無展獲的是,用來連結你的論點與主題,並逐漸推展至結論的轉折用 語與文章段落。自成一局的個別想法,若不能善用轉折語串連起來,就會像孤兒一樣飄搖、沒有歸屬;缺乏連結的段落單看是沒什麼問題,卻跟文章裡的其他想法沒 有關連,導致的結果就像你的教授所說的—支離破碎,沒有系統。再去跟教授談談吧!

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