Research & Writing Seminars: Develop Your Scholarly Voice

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Each session in this suite of four interactive seminars integrates the learning of academic research and writing skills and is taught by a librarian in collaboration with a writing instructor. The goal of each seminar is to help you develop your own voice as an emerging scholar by enabling you to identify, situate and substantiate your arguments in the context of the scholarly discussion taking place in your discipline.

The seminars are 2 hours in duration and are designed for humanities and social sciences undergraduate students. We recommend that graduate students should consider the research-related skills offerings available from the Centre for Graduate Professional Development (CGPD) at the School of Graduate Studies.

Take any three (3) of the four (4) seminars to earn credit on your Co-Curricular Record.

All seminars are organized in collaboration with the Victoria College Writing Centre

Seminar Descriptions

All sessions in the 2023–2024 academic year will be held online.

Critical Reading

Learn how to develop critical reading skills and how to incorporate them into the process of research and critical writing. This session concentrates on the skills of analysis and synthesis as they pertain to library research and academic writing.

Writing to Cite

Learn how to develop effective strategies for academic research and how to correctly incorporate primary and secondary sources into your essays. You will learn about the various styles of documentation, incorporating close reading to develop your own research interests and arguments, and avoiding inadvertent plagiarism.

Annotated Bibliographies

The session addresses the “big picture” of the place of annotated bibliographies in the scholarly conversation, as well as “nuts-and-bolts” strategies for researching and evaluating books and articles to identify the best sources on a topic. You will learn how to recognize different types of annotated bibliography assignments and define the scope of your research to make good choices about including and excluding sources, and more.

Literature Reviews

Learn how to conduct comprehensive research and synthesize the “state of the art” knowledge on a particular topic. Through short lectures, interactive class discussion and hands-on exercises, you will learn about the different kinds of literature reviews you may be asked to write at university, the steps to writing a literature review, including how to organize your content, and more.

Seminar Materials

Handouts and other resources will be posted on an external seminar web site. The password to access the materials will be provided by the instructors at the start of each seminar.


Please contact Diane Michaud (Reader Services & Instruction Librarian) if you have any questions about the seminar series or the CCR accreditation: diane [dot] michaud [at] utoronto [dot] ca.

Last updated: January 4, 2024