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Academic Writing About Music: Questions, Strategies, and Resources: Voice, Credibility

This writing guide was developed in conversation with graduate students at the Lamont School of Music. It addresses common questions that Lamont students have about their academic music writing and offers strategies that Lamont students and Writing Center

Developing Your Voice and Credibility

Developing Your Voice and Credibility

Questions to Ask

Questions to Ask:

  • How do you have an individual voice when writing about research?
  • How do you infuse personality in writing?
  • How do you write with confidence while acknowledging that you’re a student, not an expert?

Strategies to Use

Strategies to Use:

  • Research writing is still creative: part of your unique voice is visible in how you paraphrase and discuss your sources.
  • Use the meaningful concepts and terms that come with your subject, but don’t try to dress up your language. Readers appreciate a conversational tone.
  • To infuse personality, choose relevant  personal experiences and insights to share. 
  • Your tone and style will depend on your audience and publication or purpose. For discussions about writing style and voice, see Bellman ch. 8; Wingell ch. 7. 

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