Why Is The Use Of First And Second Person Pronouns Usually Condemned In Academic Writing?


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Connor Sephton answered
The use of first and second person pronouns is often discouraged in academic environments due to the informal, personal tone it can create. Often, third person is the best choice, as it gives the writing a sense of confidence and authority.

  • First person works sometimes!
In some cases, such as creative writing classes where self-commentaries are expected, writing in the first person may even be encouraged. However, some teachers tend to rule out first person completely, as it's generally more difficult (but not impossible) to create an professional, academic tone.

  • The third person perspective is versatile
Since third-person has a detached feel, it is far more appropriate for certain types of academic reports, and is often accompanied by use of passive sentences. This emphasizes what is being done rather than who is doing it. Consequently, for investigatory projects for science classes (including chemistry and biology), writing in the third person gives a more professional result.
The best way to be certain that you are using the right perspective in your academic writing is to read through assignment guidelines carefully, and to speak with instructors if course requirements are not clear.

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