Skrivekveld: what it is, and why everyone should attend it
Photo: Valeriia Melnik. On the picture: Samantha Nysted (on the left) and Elin Strand Larsen (on the right)
This Thursday, our library is arranging Skrivekveld — Academic Writing Night. There will be several lectures about academic writing. Most of it will be held in Norwegian, but the lecture “Solve the puzzle of academic writing” will be held in English. However, students probably wonder why they should spend their evening and come to the library to listen to some lectures. We tried to find reasons with our experts, Samantha Nysted and Elin Strand Larsen.
We talked with the librarian Samantha Nysted who provided us with more details about the event.
— Why did the library arrange this event?
The academic writing night is an event the library arranged several times before in the autumn and spring. This is the first time after the pandemic that we are arranging it and having it physically in the library. Students can come and listen to lectures about how to search literature, how to write academic papers, and how to avoid plagiarism and write references correctly. Those are very important skills that students need to master in order to write good academic papers and to avoid plagiarism. So that’s why we have an open event so every student can come and listen to these lectures.Samantha Nysted
— There will be only one lecture in English. But can international students come and talk with those who work in the library and who work in the student writing centre?
The library and student writing centre are ready to answer questions in English. People who work in the writing centre are regular students and they work on Mondays and Thursdays from 12 till 16. You don’t have to book an appointment, you can just stop by whenever the centre is open.Samantha Nysted
— Does the library still have “book a librarian” offer as it did last academic year?
Yes, we still have it! It is both physical and digital. When you book an appointment, you can decide if you want to come to the library or have it on Zoom.Samantha Nysted
The library offers not only this Academic Writing Evening but also a Student writing centre and an opportunity to book a librarian. If students have any questions about writing papers, they can always get help without any hesitation or fear.
We also talked with the lecturer Elin Strand Larsen who will present the only lecture in English.
— Why did you decide to take part in this event?
The library asked me to contribute. We have been doing it for many years now. The reason is that we see how fresh students who are starting up struggle with writing academically and doing references correctly. When I started studying, I also had so many problems getting good grades, and I couldn’t understand what I was doing wrong. And then, sometime in the second year, I suddenly realized that there were certain unwritten rules and written rules of how to write academically. Knowing these rules then helped me greatly, and I suddenly started getting better grades.Elin Strand Larsen
Also, the reason why I want to be a part of this is because I love the library here, and I love the people working at the library. It is just a great place to hang out and for example talk to people or relax by other means. You can bring your coffee, something to eat, and you can talk and discuss anything. Also, there is the student writing centre where you have students helping other students. I think it is also easier for students to go and talk to other students. When I tell my students that they can rent a librarian, many of them find it scary because they don’t know what questions to ask or where to start. But you can come and be completely clueless, and they will help you to start your work.Elin Strand Larsen
— Can you please tell more about your lectures?
It is the very same lecture, but the first one is in Norwegian, and the second one is in English. I have held these presentations for some years now. The reason why I do it in English as well is because I also want to have an offer for international students. I think it is also a challenge for them. Even though they are not first-year students, they are not used to the way of writing academically as we do in Norway. At the same time, it is a huge part of getting good grades. It is sort of the first thing that we look for. I usually start my presentation by saying: “Well, to write academically is almost like being able to solve Rubik’s cube”. So it is quite hard in the beginning. But once you learn it, it will become easier and easier every time you do it. And in the end, you are writing academically without even thinking about it. It is a sort of technique you need to learn.Elin Strand Larsen
— Why should exchange students come?
International students come here with different backgrounds and from different universities, and they all have different style and referencing techniques. In Norway, we have to use certain referencing styles, and it is really hard, or maybe even impossible to get anything higher than D without proper referencing. We’ve also got feedback from international students: “Why am I not getting good grades on the exam? I think I’ve written a great paper!” Most of the time, it has to do with references. It can be a great analysis, with a lot of interesting points and also maybe a good structure with introduction, analysis and conclusion. But when you see the lack of references or any references which are not written in the correct referencing style, it makes me really sad. It is sad to see that really good papers are not getting the degrees they deserve because of something that could be quite easily fixed, and this is why we want to help by arranging the Skrivekveld.Elin Strand Larsen
We hope that everyone will come as this is a great opportunity to learn quite important and useful information for free and be able to ask any questions that may occur. See you on Thursday in the library!
The full programme, time and other details can be found at this link above: https://www.hiof.no/bibliotek/english/about/events/2022/academic-writing-night.html