ACADEMIC WRITINGWriting up Scientific Text Iyad Abou-Rabii DDS. OMFS. MRes. PhD
ACADEMIC WRITING ChallengesExtended piece of writing:• Depth and breadth• Detail• Evaluation and interpretation• Independence• Volume of information• Duration
ACADEMIC WRITING ExpectationsUsed to demonstrate your:•Knowledge and understanding of a topic•Analytical and evaluation skills•Ability to apply theory and research findings to clinical practice•Ability to communicate all of the above
ACADEMIC WRITING Academic writing• Formal• Structured• Clear• Unambiguous• Logical• Sound evidence and theory
ACADEMIC WRITING Formal and Informal writing• Informal writing:I think he‟s a loser.• Formal writing: Macbeth‟s horrific choices cause him to lose everything he holds dear: children, wife, friends, crown and king.
ACADEMIC WRITING Passive voice overusePassive voiceThe systems most favoured for investment were shown to be planning, designand production. Many manual systems were reported as being currentinvestments across the sector. Only the largest firms, however, were interestedto any degree in integrated systems. Textile and clothing firms were seen to beinvesting in automated production, design, planning and reporting technologies.Active voiceIn terms of current investments, manufacturers favoured planning, design andproduction systems, with many firms showing a strong interest in manualsystems. According to the literature, only the largest firms however, showed anydegree of interest in integrated systems. Textile and clothing firms, in particular,have invested in automated production, design, planning and reportingtechnologies.
ACADEMIC WRITING Structure your writing• Make sure you write in complete sentences• Divide your writing up into paragraphs• Use connecting words and phrases to make your writing explicit and easy to follow• Check your grammar and spelling carefully
ACADEMIC WRITING Academic writing - tips• Avoid writing in the first person• Be concise – avoid waffle• Be precise• Define technical terms and abbreviations• Use paragraphs• Avoid repetition• References appropriately and consistently
ACADEMIC WRITING A SANDWICH PARAGRAPHTopic sentence This is a period when education faces many disturbing circumstances originating outside itself.Support Budgets have been drastically cut throughout the country affecting every type of education. Enrolments are dropping rapidly, because the children of the post-World War II "baby boom" have now completed their schooling, and we are feeling the full effect of the falling birth rate.Concluding sentence So there are fewer opportunities for new teachers, and the average age of teachers is increasing.
ACADEMIC WRITING Structure 1st Macrostructure MicrostructureINTRODUCTION The PARAGRAPH Thesis statement Topic sentence Outline(Summary/Background) Support Support transitionBODY/CONTENT signals! Support CONCLUSION Bibliography + Concluding sentence (optional)
ACADEMIC WRITING Transition Intervention and influence took three forms. Firstly,techniques designed to maximise efficiency were introducedinto the home and scientific principles were applied to itsdesign. In addition, housework and parenting methods werescrutinised and subject to unprecedented standards.Secondly, all aspects of reproduction attracted increasingintervention from government and the medical profession.Thirdly, state, professional and philanthropic groups began tousurp the parental role within the family through instructionand policy. As a result , the development of modern socialideals brought regulation, intervention and ever-increasingunrealistic standards. Re-read the above without the green words
ACADEMIC WRITING A question of little ,,,,,, In this study, four paradigms were used in order to measure theresponse of TOI to changes in cerebral oxygen delivery. Hypoxaemia andhyperoxia were used to alter arterial oxygen content, and changes inarterial CO 2 tension were used to alter cerebral blood flow. TOIincreased significantly in response to hyperoxia and hypercapnoea, andsignificantly decreased in response to hypoxaemia and hyperventilation.PET studies suggest that changes in CBV occurring during experimentalprotocols of this type only occur in the arterial compartment and will,therefore, alter the AVR. Analysis of the combined datasets revealed thatchanges in TOI are significantly affected by changes in SaO 2 , EtCO 2 ,CBV and MBP. Re-read the above without commas in red ,,,,,
ACADEMIC WRITINGGeorge Orwell’s rules for good writingNever use a metaphor, simile or other figure of speech which you areused to seeing in print.Never use a long word where a short one will do.If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.Never use the passive where you can use the active.Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word or a jargon word if you canthink of an everyday English equivalent.Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous.George Orwell: „Politics and the English Language‟, London. 1946.
ACADEMIC WRITING Referencing• Acknowledgement of your sources is a vital and integral part of the academic process.• Check with course tutors what the preferred method is “Harvard Method”• Referencing and research
ACADEMIC WRITING Academic writing – exampleDiabetes affects all ages and about 2.35 million people have the disease in this country. Weknow that people with diabetes have more oral health problems.In this project I aimed to carry out a literature review to see whether there is a link betweentreating periodontal disease and blood sugar control in diabetes.
ACADEMIC WRITING Academic writing – exampleDiabetes affects people of all ages and it is estimated that 2.35 million peoplein the UK have this disease (Department of Health, 2009).There is growing evidence that people with diabetes who do not have goodcontrol over their blood sugar levels are at greater risk of some oral healthproblems (Tsai et al., 2002).The aim of this project is to investigate the relationship between periodontaltherapy and glycaemic control in people with diabetes.
ACADEMIC WRITING Writing up – early stages•Timetable your writing•Decide on a structure early on•Know how and when to reference –Approved method (be consistent) –Credible and contemporary sources –Substantiate claims • Keep references organized separately (e.g. EndNote)
ACADEMIC WRITING Timetable your writing Time Management Toolshttp://my.taskwise.com/
ACADEMIC WRITING Writing up – as you go along• Use sections/sub-sections to organise content (guide in handbooks)• Know which information goes in each section• Use tables and figures to present information (N.B. graphs are figures)• Regularly revisit your aims, objectives and research question
ACADEMIC WRITING Writing up – as you go along•Avoid distractions•Recognise procrastination and barriers to writing•Do not necessarily need to write in the order that the section appears in the final report• Save different versions and backup often• Write in an academic style
ACADEMIC WRITING Writing up – towards the end•Leave enough time to interpret the findings and write the discussion•Conclusions should be based on the evidence you present•Critique your own work• Use Appendices for material which is too detailed for the main sections
ACADEMIC WRITING Results and discussion• Describe and explain the characteristics and findings of the included studies (tables & text)• Synthesis of results (qualitative or quantitative)• Place the results in context – Consider any flaws in the evidence (quality of studies, any heterogeneity etc.) – The impact of any biases
ACADEMIC WRITING Writing up - final checks• Proof read (spelling, grammar, clarity etc.). Use a spell cheque with caution• Consistency of styles and formatting• Tables and figures• Page numbers and other formatting• Word count• “Front matter”
ACADEMIC WRITING Proof readingIf English is not your first language, ask an English native person to proof read projects•Ensure you give him plenty of time for this.
ACADEMIC WRITING Finally…• Know the requirements and plan your time – writing up will take longer than you think!• Keep in touch with your supervisor• Regularly revisit your aims, objectives and research question• Leave time to proof read• Refer to the marking criteria in the handbooks whilst writing and before you submit
ACADEMIC WRITING Essential texts:• Essential texts:• Writing Academic English, by A. Oshima and A. Hague, Longman, 1999.• Academic Writing for Graduate Students: Essential Tasks and Skills (Michigan Series in English for Academic & Professional Purposes), by John Swales and Christine B. Feak, University of Michigan Press, 2004
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