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Writing Resources

This guide contains all of the ASC's writing resources. If you do not see a topic, suggest it through the suggestion box on the Writing home page.

Typology of Citations


Definition and descriptions in scholarly writing requires the use of scientific language and apt terminologies which in turn make the writing trustworthy to an academic readership.

Hence, it is important to draw upon sources that -

  • present a comprehensive and critical definition of the concept or description of a research context and,
  • have been recognized and used by other scholars.

Blended learning has been broadly defined as any combination of "face-to-face teaching with computer technology" (Hockly, 2017, p. 97).

 For the writer

This category of citation can be useful for providing accurate descriptions of the research context, and defining terminologies.

  For the reader

Citing such sources for descriptions or definitions ensures the accuracy and credibility of the explanation.



Every subject has seminal publications that have significantly contributed to its development. These citations help the researcher gain legitimacy by recognizing the foundational resources of the literature.


Garrison and Kanuka’s (2004, p. 96) definition of blended learning as a “thoughtful integration” of in-person and computer-based technology that has been widely used in the literature (Hrastinski, 2019).

  For the writer

This category of citations are useful for demonstrating an awareness of the literature and recognition of the important voices in it.

  For the reader 

The researcher should treat such citations as a tick-in-the-box for the committee.



Layers, subtleties, and contradictions are part and parcel of examining any research problem. But, no one resource can discuss all the varied aspects of a problem. Some sources will identify the best rivers to fish in, some will examine the best technique for fishing, and some will focus on the impact of climate change on the fish population in rivers.

Thoughtful integration of different mediums of instruction takes into consideration the agency of teachers that enables decision making in designing an approach to blended learning (Fry et al., 2018).

For the writer

The writer’s job is to focus on the relevant research layers and find suitable resources. Being mindful of the nuance the citations represent will enable the writer to weave the citations into the narrative and thereby, build a strong argument. 

For the reader

For the reader (such as the SME), the layered citations indicate the writers’ ability to look for nuance in their literature review.



Narrowing the focus of the research problem is an exercise in identifying the problems in literature until the researcher arrives at the gap they seek to address. An important tool in such narrowing of focus by trimming the problem area is the resource that helps the researcher critique the literature to indicate what is lacking in other studies. 

Despite the popularity of blended learning in the past two decades, there has been little research that has focused on defining what should be included in “thoughtful integration” in order to ensure a successful application of blended-learning in the classroom (Forkosh-Baruch et al., 2021).

For the writer

These sources help the writer develop an informed critique of the literature and by implication outline the gap that their study will fulfill.

For the reader

Such citations legitimize the writer's position in disagreeing with or critiquing certain studies.




The citations indicating points of divergence for the research are critical for further narrowing the research problem and arriving at the problem statement. Therefore, it is important for the writer to establish what their study is about by indicating what their study is not.

Chin et al. (2018) have provided an in-depth examination of how technology can be thoughtfully integrated to enhance the effectiveness of a blended approach. However, they have not considered the experience of the student in the thoughtful integration of technology, and this leaves their approach to thoughtful integration one-sided. 

For the writer

Such citations take the study a step further in outlining its position in the literature and its difference from other research and are particularly useful in the literature review.

For the reader

The inclusion of divergent citations indicate a rounded understanding of the literature, the writer's ability to position their research and outline their theoretical stance logically and critically



There are intricacies to agreeing with any resource as can be seen from the runway and diverge citations. The huddle citations are meant to indicate journal articles or books that are integral to the research, with which the writer agrees strongly. These resources could also pertain to theories that are used for writing the theoretical or conceptual framework, or the methodology used in the study. Therefore, it is a good idea for the writer to huddle with significant and well-recognized resources in the literature.

This study contends that thoughtful integration should integrate experiential learning theory to determine how technology should be blended with face-to-face interaction in order for the learning to be effective (Budhai, 2021). 

For the writer

The writer’s responsibility in the dissertation will be to indicate how the citation used for huddling can be applied to the specific context of their problem statement and analyze its implication for the purpose statement. For instance, the source - Budhai, 2021 discusses the importance of experiential learning in online classroom. However, in the example, the writer has contextualized the citation based on the fact that online classrooms are one facet of the broader issue of the use of technology, which in turn is pivotal to blended learning. 

 For the reader

The huddle citations indicate  the research's theoretical leanings and clearly outlines its position in the literature by demonstrating how the research will be conducted. 


Citation Strategies in Action