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Ann Intern Med. Ann Int Med. PLoS Med 6 6 : e Van Way CW. The introduction must be organized from the global to the particular point of view, guiding the readers to your objectives when writing this paper. State the purpose of the paper and research strategy adopted to answer the question, but do not mix introduction with results, discussion and conclusion. Always keep them separate to ensure that the manuscript flows logically from one section to the next.
Hypothesis and objectives must be clearly remarked at the end of the introduction. Expressions such as "novel," "first time," "first ever," and "paradigm-changing" are not preferred. Use them sparingly. Together with the title, it's the advertisement of your article. Make it interesting and easily understood without reading the whole article. Avoid using jargon, uncommon abbreviations and references. You must be accurate, using the words that convey the precise meaning of your research.
The abstract provides a short description of the perspective and purpose of your paper. It gives key results but minimizes experimental details. A clear abstract will strongly influence whether or not your work is further considered. However, the abstracts must be keep as brief as possible. Just check the 'Guide for authors' of the journal, but normally they have less than words. Here's a good example on a short abstract.
In an abstract, the two whats are essential. Here's an example from an article I co-authored in Ecological Indicators : What has been done?
In this contribution, 38 different applications including six new case studies hypoxia processes, sand extraction, oil platform impacts, engineering works, dredging and fish aquaculture are presented. Those communities act as ecological indicators of the 'health' of the system, indicating clearly the gradient associated with the disturbance. It is your first and probably only opportunity to attract the reader's attention.
In this way, remember that the first readers are the Editor and the referees. Also, readers are the potential authors who will cite your article, so the first impression is powerful!
We are all flooded by publications, and readers don't have time to read all scientific production. They must be selective, and this selection often comes from the title.
Reviewers will check whether the title is specific and whether it reflects the content of the manuscript. Editors hate titles that make no sense or fail to represent the subject matter adequately. Hence, keep the title informative and concise clear, descriptive, and not too long.
You must avoid technical jargon and abbreviations, if possible. This is because you need to attract a readership as large as possible. Dedicate some time to think about the title and discuss it with your co-authors. Here you can see some examples of original titles, and how they were changed after reviews and comments to them: Example 1 Original title: Preliminary observations on the effect of salinity on benthic community distribution within a estuarine system, in the North Sea Revised title: Effect of salinity on benthic distribution within the Scheldt estuary North Sea Comments: Long title distracts readers.
What procedures were followed? Are the treatments and controls clearly described? Does this section describe the sampling regime and sample sizes, including how individuals were assigned to treatments? What research materials were used: the organism, special chemicals, concentrations, instruments, etc.? Briefly explain the relevance of the methods to the questions you introduced above e.
If applicable, include a description of the statistical methods you used in your analysis. Careful writing of this section is important because the cornerstone of the scientific method requires that your results are reproducible, and for the results to be reproducible, you must provide the basis for the repetition of your experiments by others.
This section should be written in the past tense. Your data should b presented succinctly in the body of the report and presented in detail as tables or graphs. However, do not present the same data in both tabular and graphical form in the same paper. Strive for clarity, the results should be short and sweet. The results section should be written so that any college student could read the text to learn what you have done.
When the enzyme as soaked in sulfuric acid, it produced no change in absorbance When stating your results in the body of the text, refer to your graphs and tables.
Tables and graphs alone do not make a Results section. In the text of this section describe your results do not list actual numbers, but point out trends or important features. Refer to the figures and tables by number as well as any other relevant information. Results are typically not discussed much more in this section unless brief discussion aids clarity. In referring to your results, avoid phrases like 'Table 1 shows the rate at which students fall asleep in class as a function of the time of day that class is taught.
This is the place to tell the reader what you found out, not what it means. Each table and figure should be numbered sequentially for easy reference in the text of the Results and Discussion sections. Figures e. Be sure to label both axes of all graphs e. Tables are numbered separately from the figures as Table 1 to Table X. Do not use colloquial speech, slang, or "childish" words or phrases.
Do not use contractions: for example, "don't" must be "do not" and "isn't" must be "is not" etc. Top of Page Abbreviations: Do not use abbreviations in the text except for units of measure.
Always abbreviate these when using them with data 2 mm; 10 min. Except for temperature units F,C, K never abbreviate units of measure when using them in a non-data context e.
A list of common abbreviations and conversions is provided. Use Past Tense: Research papers reflect work that has been completed, therefore use the past tense throughout your paper including the Introduction when referring to the actual work that you did, including statements about your expectations or hypotheses. Use the past tense, as well, when referring to the work of others that you may cite. Top of Page First vs. Third Person: If there is one stylistic area where scientific disciplines and journals vary widely, it is the use of first vs.
Some disciplines and their journals e. Other disciplines, especially the biomedical fields, still prefer the third person constrcution. Limit your use of first person construction i. Use first person in the methods sparingly if at all, and avoid its use in the results. Use Active Verbs: Use active verbs whenever possible; writing that overly uses passive verbs is, was, has, have, had is deadly to read and almost always results in more words than necessary to say the same thing.
Other specific comments on style are also included for each section of the paper. Remember: precise word use, past tense, active voice, brevity. References References to the research findings of others are an integral component of any research paper.
The usual practice is to summarize the finding or other information in your own words and then cite the source.
Epidemiology for primary health care. Following this review the manuscript is recommended for publication, revision or rejection. Think about "how will I search for this piece of information" when you design the title. Again, check the Guide for Authors and look at the number of keywords admitted, label, definitions, thesaurus, range, and other special requests. The cells were cultured, metaphase chromosome spreads were prepared and the chromosomes stained and photographed as described in Materials and Methods.
Remember always that scientific terminology very often has precise meaning. The references are listed in alphabetical order by last name of the first author of each publication. Use short rather than long sentences. Phenotypic design, plasticity and ecological performance in two tadpole species.