Midwifery reading and writing

R20- 0711

Part 1 Academic reading


Welcome to this resource that will assist you in developing effective reading strategies to take you through your course. The content here will guide you through an approach to reading academic texts and articles. The activities are an opportunity for you to practice effective academic reading and note making so that you feel more confident with the growing amount of increasingly complex reading you are required to do.

(Embed ACADEMIC READING: 1.1. to the end of the table Argue or Agree) Effective critical reading

  • questions that directly link to the information in the text
  • questions about new pieces of evidence/information
  • questions to clarify things you did not fully understand
  • questions that aim to reveal the author’s main idea
  • teasing questions that anticipate what may be discussed later in the text

(Embed table from here in Bb https://livemanchesterac-my.sharepoint.com/:w:/g/personal/sam_aston_manchester_ac_uk/Ed8DUMAr3OxEqIELCB_u0yUBNlbc8CWLFAufAPOl6_QT3w?e=3aa2gn)

Activity — reading task

(Embed instructions on using Cornell notes) Structuring your notes

Capturing your thoughts on what you read is incredibly important so that you can return to your notes when you are writing at some point in the future. Using a structured method of note making can be really helpful as you begin to read more texts for your course so keeping them organised is crucial.

(Embed Note-making 1.1)

(Embed the read for what you need infographic) Read for what you need

The following infographic guides you through the structure of a journal article so that you can see how research journal articles are generally structured. You don’t always necessarily need to read a journal article from beginning to end; you may only need to read particular sections to find out more about a methodology, or the author’s discussion of their findings, for example.

(Embed ACADEMIC READING: 1.4.) Student advice on approaching reading

In summary

In this resource you have practised annotating and summarising while reading. Taking an active approach like this will mean that you engage with the texts that your course requires even when the reading more complex.

Final action

Summarise what you have learnt in a series of 3–5 bullet points and bring them with you to the live session where you will discuss them in small groups.

(Embed standard evaluation and further support)

Part 2

Effectively incorporating references into your academic writing


Nice to see you again!

(Embed ACADEMIC WRITING: 1.1. Podcast) Introduction to Academic Writing

(Embed REFERENCING: 1.0) What is referencing

(Embed ACADEMIC WRITING: 2.2.) (Video) Integrating the work of others into your writing

(Embed REFERENCING: 3.0) Referencing Subject Guide (we could add in individual task we used for humanitarians here too)

(Embed REFERENCING: 7.0) Avoid Plagiarism

(Embed REFERENCING: 3.1) Start to Finish: Referencing

(Embed ACADEMIC WRITING: 1.4) Further Support

(Embed ACADEMIC WRITING: 1.5) Get 1:1 guidance from a Royal Literary Fellow

(Embed General Support & Evaluation)

Live Synchronous Session

Supporting Materials


During this session students will have the opportunity to consolidate and discuss the strategies and knowledge presented in the asynchronous content, as well as build upon those strategies through the introduction and application of a new critical reading and critical writing technique.


Outline that this session will reflect and build on the resources and activities in the blackboard space. We will cover:

  • Teach/share key learning points from the content in Blackboard
  • Practice using it says I say and so as a method of clarifying critical thinking into writing.

Recap and Refresh

Ask students to use Chat or Microphones to share their key learning point from the Blackboard content they worked through in previous weeks.


(7 minutes)

  • Really good answers and insights into your own experiences of academic reading — thanks for sharing those. Using post-it notes and sticky notes to identify important bits of reading, making note of words or phrases that you want to do further research about, decide what type of information you want or what questions you need answers to before you start reading, turn notes into mindmaps or posters to help digest and understand the information. Important to learn from each other and experiment with new approaches that may help to enhance your own work. We would recommend looking other the jamboard again and identifying one or two strategies that others have shared and trying these out for yourself.
  • Clear evidence of understanding of when and where to reference: to give credit for another’s person’s ideas or work — when using evidence to support your own ideas and perspectives. Every time you include someone else’s work.
  • Recognised that when using evidence/sources over 5 years old, it is also important to consider if things have changed since that time / outdated. Highlight that thinking about this (and answering it!) gives students a great opportunity to show off their critical thinking.
  • Highlight that is was good to see students approach to critical note-making. That as well as recorded key dates, facts and terminology they correctly recognised the need to analysis and ask questions of the information they were reading. (link this to the questions they has about Brown article in jamboard)
    Highlight that we can see this is something they have already done in the questions they shared after reading the Amy Brown article. Very good nuanced questions such as who is Amy Brown (what are her potential biases/qualifications etc.), What did Norway do to increase breastfeeding rates? and what other methods can be used to bond with babies. Asking and then doing further research to answer these questions allows you to show your critical thinking and bring your own insight and perspective into the things you are reading and writing. Would more images on television or in the media make rates increase due to normalisation / cultural shift of expectations (looking at social and cultural issues)
  • From the answers given confident that students know why we reference — to show where you found your evidence, give credit to researchers and avoid plagiarism. Mention to students that references also present opportunities to add in your own thoughts and ideas — this is something we will look at today.
  • “Are there any reliable referencing generators?”
  • “Can you references two sources be side each other. For example (Holloway, 2012) (Gallagher, 2017) when writing about both research in the paragraph?”
    Yes! Highlight to students that this is a really good question and a really useful method to show how much further reading and research you have done. Demonstrate how this would be done — both references inside the same paragraph).

Application of reading into writing strategy

(30 minutes)


Students to read extract of article in the Google Notebook. Ask students to identify a piece of evidence they find interesting in relation to what they read in the Breast is Best (Amy Brown) article — this could be something that contradicts Brown’s ideas, supports Brown’s ideas or introduces a new idea.

It Says, I Say

Briefly introduce paragraph structure (topic-evidence-analysis-conclusion) as a useful way to get the right balance between descriptive and critical writing. Signpost where students can find out more about this. For this activity we will focus on the relationship between the evidence and analysis sentences.

And So

Remind students that the And So part of the strategy is about connecting the evidence to their overall argument/assessment question. For this activity, students should write their And So in relation the Amy Brown’s argument in Breast is Best.


(7 minutes)



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