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Academic Writing Skills - From PhD Paper to Publication for Business School Students

The goal of this course is to help Business School students improve their academic writing skills. This online course will provide you with the information and tools you need to brush up on your academic writing skills. This should help you improve one of your PhD papers which you can then publish in a top journal.

We are currently not open for applications. We will announce the new course offer in August 2023. Please leave your details to receive the announcement when we open registrations for VU Graduate Winter School 2024.

This course will run over the course of 5 days and you will be working on one of your PhD papers during the course. We will have 2-hours interactive live sessions in the morning (via Zoom) and 3-hour practical writing sessions in the afternoon during which you will work on your own paper, give feedback to each other, and have an opportunity to receive feedback from the teachers. The overall goal of the course is to help you improve your academic writing skills and improve one of your PhD papers which you aim to publish in a top journal. 

On the first day, you will learn about how to engage in academic conversations and how to target varied audiences. Day two will be all about how to write an effective introduction. The introduction is arguably the most important part of a paper, and you will learn about and apply a template for writing introductions. On the third day you will learn more about how to write theory sections and improve the current version in your own paper. Day four will focus on the methods section. You will learn how to ensure your methods are consistent and reliable. Finally, on day five, you will learn about the revision process at journals and how to respond to reviewers’ comments. In the afternoon of the last day, we will go through an exemplary revision process based on a paper published in the Academy of Management Journal. 

The course draws on Huff’s (2008) book “Designing Research for Publication” as well as various articles on academic writing.

During the practical writing sessions in the afternoon, you will be working on the respective sections of your own paper covered in the morning. You will also give other course participants feedback on their section and receive feedback, thus enhancing the learning process. You will also have an opportunity to receive feedback from the teachers. At the end of the week, you will have revised the introduction, theory, and methods sections of your paper.

Learning objectives
By the end of this online course, students will be able to: 

  • Signal to readers which academic conversations they are joining and contributing to.
  • Write effective introductions based on a step-by-step model. 
  • Understand how to select and critically review the literature and write effective theory sections.
  • Write effective methods sections in terms of appropriateness, consistency, and reliability of the methods chosen.
  • Draw on various tips and lessons learned in the review process.

Dr. Janina Klein

Dr. Janina Klein

Janina Klein is an Assistant Professor of Organizational Change at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, School of Business and Economics. Janina obtained her PhD from the University of Edinburgh Business School and holds a MLitt (Master) in International Business from the University of St Andrews. Her professional background is in change management where she worked for more than ten years in various roles. In her research, Janina is passionate about understanding how organizations can address societal challenges such as the elimination of poverty, reduction of inequality and move towards responsible production. Her research focusses on hybrid organizations and social enterprises which apply commercial strategies to create social value and in doing so experience unique organizing challenges.

View the profile of Janina Klein
SBE_M&O staff picture Janina Klein 2

Student testimonial

Student testimonial

I had a great time! I wish digital teaching would always be so enjoyable and well organised!

Additional Course Information

  • Learning objectives

    By the end of this course, students will be able to:

    •  Set up an integrated development environment.
    •  Write computer programs in the Python language.
    •  Understand inter-language programming concepts.
  • Forms of tuition and assessment

    The course will be taught through online lectures and practical sessions that students are required to attend in order to pass the course. 

    Additionally, students will be required to dedicate about 25 hours to self-study and to individual programming assignments which will be graded and will contribute to the final grade.

  • Necessary requirements

    The only necessary requirement is a functioning laptop (Windows/Mac/Linux). 

  • Course manual and syllabus

    Here you will find a detailed description of the course, the reading list, a timetable and more.

    *Some information may be subject to change

We are here to help!

Feel free to contact us anytime.


  • Bianca
  • Programme Coordinator
  • Celia
  • Summer and Winter School Officer
Celia VU Amsterdam Summer & Winter School
  • Helena
  • Summer and Winter School Officer
Helena VU Amsterdam Summer and Winter School