How to write a paper


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How to write a paper

  1. 1. Bo Liu How to Write a Paper
  2. 2. Overview <ul><li>1.Publishing process </li></ul><ul><li>2.Check the originality of your ideas </li></ul><ul><li>3.Use sources properly and avoid plagiarism </li></ul><ul><li>4.Write the manuscript </li></ul><ul><li>5.Main complaints of Editors </li></ul>
  3. 3. Publishing process <ul><li>Who is reviewing your paper? </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Peer’ means ‘someone like you’ </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Peer review’: a review by another scientist in your field </li></ul><ul><li>Who is judging your paper? Editor-in-Chief: an internationally famous scientist who decides on each manuscript </li></ul><ul><li>These are busy scientists, just like you! Please prepare well, so you don’t waste their time </li></ul>
  4. 4. Contents <ul><li>From an idea </li></ul><ul><li>by help of rules </li></ul><ul><li>to the published paper </li></ul><ul><li>scientific idea–be original---the importance </li></ul><ul><li>of developing new methodologies </li></ul><ul><li>paper organization– Introduction/Methods/ </li></ul><ul><li>– Results/Discussion </li></ul><ul><li>paper submission </li></ul>
  5. 5. 1. How to Check the Originality of Your Ideas <ul><li>Originality of idea >key words search </li></ul><ul><li>Originality of writing >editors use SCOPUS to check </li></ul>
  6. 6. 2. How to Use Sources and Avoid Plagiarism <ul><li>Start from a broad search to get </li></ul><ul><li>the full list of articles on a topic. </li></ul><ul><li>Track the latest literature on a subject. </li></ul>
  7. 7. 3. How to write a manuscript <ul><li>For a world-class Paper </li></ul><ul><li>! Content is essential </li></ul><ul><li>! Presentation is critical </li></ul><ul><li>Basic knowledge: SCI, IF, h index and etc. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Planning a manuscript <ul><li>Write your manuscript so that it tells a clear story –it must have a purpose </li></ul><ul><li>• You want people to learn about your work –make it easy for them </li></ul><ul><li>• Make it easy for reviewers and editors </li></ul><ul><li>• Use the spell checker and grammar checker </li></ul><ul><li>• Make neat breaks between pages and sections </li></ul><ul><li>Give the document a professional look </li></ul>
  9. 9. How to write a manuscript <ul><li>Structure of a scientific paper </li></ul><ul><li>• Title + running title </li></ul><ul><li>• Authors + correspondence address </li></ul><ul><li>• Abstract + Keyword </li></ul><ul><li>• Introduction </li></ul><ul><li>• Materials and methods </li></ul><ul><li>• Results & Discussion </li></ul><ul><li>• Conclusion </li></ul><ul><li>• Acknowledgements </li></ul><ul><li>• References </li></ul>
  10. 10. Writing an Abstract and Title <ul><li>Title: concise and clear </li></ul><ul><li>Specific </li></ul><ul><li>Eye-catching </li></ul><ul><li>Descriptive words </li></ul>
  11. 11. Example (Title) <ul><li>Polygonatum cyrtonema lectin induces apoptosis and autophagy in human melanoma A375 cells through a mitochondria-mediated ROS–p38–p53 pathway ( Liu et al., Cancer Letters. 2009) </li></ul>
  12. 12. Writing an Abstract <ul><li>1.Background / Objective </li></ul><ul><li>2.Methods </li></ul><ul><li>3.Results </li></ul><ul><li>4.Conclusions </li></ul>
  13. 13. Example (Abstract) <ul><li>Polygonatum cyrtonema lectin (PCL), a mannose-binding lectin, has been reported to induce cytotoxicity and apoptosis. </li></ul><ul><li>In this study, we demonstrated that PCL-induced apoptosis and autophagy in A375 cells. The apoptotic mechanism was that PCL treatment regulated Bax, Bcl-xL and Bcl-2 proteins, leading to mitochondrial depolarization, cytochrome c release and caspase activation. Subsequently, we found that PCL treatment abrogated glutathione antioxidant system and induced mitochondria to generate ROS accumulation, resulting in p38–p53 activation. Moreover, we confirmed that the ROS–p38–p53 pathway was involved in PCL-induced autophagy. </li></ul><ul><li>In conclusion, these results indicate that PCL induces apoptosis and autophagy via a mitochondrial-mediated ROS–p38–p53 pathway. </li></ul><ul><li>( Liu et al., Cancer Letters. 2009) </li></ul>
  14. 14. Writing an Introduction <ul><li>1.Research Situation </li></ul><ul><li>2.What are the key problems now </li></ul><ul><li>3.How we tackled the problems </li></ul><ul><li>4.Assess the effectiveness of the research </li></ul>
  15. 15. Material and Methods <ul><li>Enough information must be given so that </li></ul><ul><li>the experiments could be reproduced </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid adding comments and discussion </li></ul><ul><li>Usually with subheadings </li></ul>
  16. 16. Results <ul><li>1. Clarity and brevity: display of data with logical development showing how your findings satisfy your objectives </li></ul><ul><li>2. Number should be meaningful (where possible give illustrative examples and compare those with known results from literature) </li></ul><ul><li>3. Use appropriate statistics, error analysis, check for accuracy and internal consistency </li></ul><ul><li>4. Pay considerable attention to best way to present data (use tables and figures) </li></ul>
  17. 17. How to write a Discussion <ul><li>1.Be rigorous about conclusions </li></ul><ul><li>2.Summarize evidence supporting each conclusion </li></ul><ul><li>3.Discuss problems, uncertainties regarding your work </li></ul><ul><li>4.Compare your findings with other studies </li></ul><ul><li>5.Theoretical or practical implications, importance </li></ul>
  18. 18. Discussion content <ul><li>1. Background for understanding the discussion </li></ul><ul><li>2. What you did, found, thought and what it means for the discipline </li></ul><ul><li>3. Comment </li></ul><ul><li>4. Comparison to previous research </li></ul><ul><li>5. How your results were unique or different from previous research </li></ul><ul><li>6. Limitations/perspective </li></ul>
  19. 19. How to Write a Conclusion <ul><li>Summary of the research findings </li></ul><ul><li>Recommendation of Applications </li></ul><ul><li>Contribution </li></ul><ul><li>Limitations </li></ul>
  20. 21. Acknowledgments <ul><li>Technical assistance </li></ul><ul><li>Financial Assistance </li></ul><ul><li>Helpful discussions </li></ul><ul><li>Critical reading of manuscript </li></ul>
  21. 22. References <ul><li>Include the main scientific publications on </li></ul><ul><li>which your work is based typically 30-60 </li></ul><ul><li>papers, include review articles as appropriate </li></ul><ul><li>Make sure the list is up to date </li></ul><ul><li>Check the format (Endnote) </li></ul>
  22. 23. 4. Main complaints of Editors <ul><li>Language –Clarity & objectivity & accuracy & brevity </li></ul><ul><li>Journal criteria ignored </li></ul><ul><li>Scope & Audience </li></ul><ul><li>Format (“Instruction for Authors” or “Guide for authors”) </li></ul><ul><li>double spacing </li></ul><ul><li>Location of figures, tables, reference style, copyright transfer </li></ul><ul><li>Cover letter </li></ul><ul><li>Significant advance & Suggested referees </li></ul>
  23. 24. Main complaints of Editors <ul><li>Abstracts , titles vague/unscientific </li></ul><ul><li>– ABSTRACT is the most-read part of a paper </li></ul><ul><li>– TITLE is main attention-getter </li></ul><ul><li>Keywords missing, or not according to journal specifications – KEYWORDS is essential for finding your paper </li></ul><ul><li>Reference lists limited/outdated- not too many; avoid excessive self-citation </li></ul><ul><li>Low quality figures and meaningless Captions </li></ul><ul><li>– Figure + Caption tell a complete story , be specific </li></ul>
  24. 25. Language issue <ul><li>Grammatical and spelling mistakes </li></ul><ul><li>Wrong usage of words </li></ul><ul><li>Badly constructed sentences </li></ul><ul><li>Long sentences </li></ul>
  25. 26. What is Scientific English <ul><li>Style: Clarity & objectivity & accuracy & brevity </li></ul><ul><li>Common problems for non-English speaker </li></ul><ul><li>⎯ Consistency of the sentences </li></ul><ul><li>⎯ Logic of the discussion </li></ul><ul><li>⎯ Accuracy of the grammar </li></ul><ul><li>⎯ Ability to use the language to express ideas freely </li></ul>
  26. 27. <ul><li>Proverb: Clear writing is writing that is incapable of being misunderstood . </li></ul><ul><li>Thank you for your attention! </li></ul><ul><li>Bo Liu </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>