Here are some suggested resources for improving both your writing and research skills from the excellent book The Craft of Research (listed below). If you're looking for specific bibliographies or reference materials, I suggest contacting our good friends at the Taylor Library. They love this stuff! Click on the titles for details about availability at Iliff, your local library, and various booksellers. If you'd like a more personalized suggestion, make an appointment or come talk to a consultant at the Iliff Writing Lab.
For academic style, research, and citation, try:
Kate L. Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations: Chicago Style for Students and Researchers, 8th ed, Revised by Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M. Williams (Chicago: University of Chicago, 2013). ISBN: 9780226816371
This is the latest (and greatest) edition of the classic student guide to Chicago Style. This clearly written guide will answer all your questions about the most-used citation style at Iliff. Bring your questions of clarification to the Writing Lab.
For research, try:
Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb, and Joseph M Williams, The Craft of Research.(Chicago: University of Chicago, 1995). ISBN:9780226065656
Booth's text has been through several editions because it works so well for students. It offers help for all your research needs from forming a topic all the way through the writing process. I highly recommend it for students writing a thesis.
For those who would like to brush up on grammar and syntax, try:
Joseph M. Williams and Gregory G. Colomb, Style: The Basics of Clarity and Grace, 4th ed. (Boston: Longman, 2012). ISBN: 9780205830763
A writing guide that you might actually read! The problem-solution format keeps this little book interesting and useful.
If you're feeling overwhelmed about writing for graduate theological education, try:
Deborah Core, The Seminary Student Writes. (Atlanta: Chalice Press, 2000). ISBN: 9780827234734
Core has written a practical guide for the basics of writing in a theological study environment.
For the new theological and biblical writer:
Lucretia B. Yaghjian, Writing Theology Well: A Rhetoric for Theological and Biblical Writers, 2nd ed. New York: Continuum, 2015. ISBN: 9780567022196
This brand new edition continues Yaghjian's combination of technical skill and thoughtful advice.
For those interested in the psychology of academic writing:
Jenny Cameron, Karen Nairn, and Jane Higgins. "Demystifying Academic Writing: Reflections on Emotions, Know-How and Academic Identity." Journal of Geography in Higher Education 33, no. 2 (2009): 269-84.
This is a thoughtful piece on working through the emotions of writing. These strategies might be especially helpful for grad students of all stages.
Other thoughtful resources on writing:
Abbot, Andrew Delano. Digital Paper: A Manual for Research and Writing with Library and Internet Materials. Chicago: U of Chicago Press, 2014.
CNS Guidebook on Religion: Reference Guide and Usage Manual. 4th ed. Washington, DC: Catholic News Service, 2012.
Dreyer, Benjamin. Dreyer's English: An Utterly Correct Guide to Clarity and Style. New York: Random House, 2019. This is seriously the funniest style guide I have ever read, if not one of the funniest books, period. I laughed out loud multiple times. He's great to follow on Twitter, too.
Hacker, Diana, and Barbara Fister. Research and Documentation in the Electronic Age. 5th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2015.
Kane, Eileen, and Mar O'Reilly-de Brun. Doing Your Own Research. London: Marion Boyars, 2005.
Kidder, Tracy, and Richard Todd. Good Prose: The Art of Non-Fiction (New York: Random House, 2013). ISBN: 9781400069750
Lamott, Anne. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life (New York: Anchor Books, 1997). ISBN: 9780385480017
Lipson, Charles. Doing Honest Work in College: How to Prepare Citations, Avoid Plagiarism, and Achieve Real Academic Success. 2nd ed. Chicago: U of Chicago Press, 2008.
Yaghjian, Lucretia B. Writing Theology Well: A Rhetoric for Theological and Biblical Writers. 2nd ed. New York: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2015.
We know that it can be difficult to find reliable information with a simple web search. That's why the Iliff Writing Lab curates this collection of resources that we have found to be trustworthy. If you find a broken link, please contact email@example.com so we can fix it. If there is a question that these sites cannot answer feel free to ask at firstname.lastname@example.org .
OWL at Purdue, Online Writing Lab: Offers online handouts covering writing, research, grammar, and MLA and APA style. A fantastic resource!
Grammar Girl: A grammar advice blog. You might try listening to her podcast, too.
Writing an Email to Your Professor: Don't sound silly.
Informal tips for reading theology well from Dr. Jeremy Garber.