Tag Archives: writing style

Secondary referencing

Secondary referencing is considered to be poor academic practice. It is important┬áto find the original papers and cite them, or explain in a footnote why the original papers are no longer available or accessible. Merely mentioning that someone else has … Continue reading

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How to decide on active or passive voice

A common problem in writing is deciding on whether to use active or passive voice. There is a general tradition in scientific writing of writing in the third person, and avoid writing in the first person. But that is not … Continue reading

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Salami-slicing

Salami-slicing is the practice of reporting one piece of research many times in different papers, each time with a slightly different spin, often to different journals. I came across this today (again), when the editor of another journal invited me … Continue reading

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How to write an informative and helpful covering letter

The primary purpose of the covering letter is to explain what the paper is about, why it is important and how the research was done, with particular reference to the aims and scope of the journal. The Editor’s first decision … Continue reading

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Author guidelines

Like many journal editors, we are constantly thinking about how we explain, concisely, our expectations for the style in which papers are written. All journal editors struggle with this. There are so many things to say about how a piece … Continue reading

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Reviewing past research: notes from a frustrated editor

Nearly every paper that crosses my desk these days seems to need comment on how the literature review has been reported. Too many authors simply string sentences together that they have picked up from other authors, and then stick the … Continue reading

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Effective writing

There are many good books about effective writing. They are generally an enjoyable read, because they are written so well. I recommend Kirkman, H and Turk, C (1988) Effective Writing: Improving Scientific, Technical and Business Communication, 2nd ed, Taylor & … Continue reading

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Writing your literature review

Within this journal, we have a few predilections about how the literature review should be dealt with: We are keen to ensure that papers engage with ongoing debates in this field and that relevant work is cited and critiqued. We … Continue reading

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Structure of a paper

Scientific papers generally follow a pattern. It is important that the style of writing is clear and appropriate. Equally, it is important that the argument follows a logical structure, from the introduction to the conclusions. Papers are sometimes rejected because … Continue reading

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