Effectivelycommunicating your research findingsKyushu UniversityWarren Raye, PhDSenior Life Sciences EditorEdanz Group27 September 2012
A little about me…Author ResearcherVirology, Stem Cell Biology, Arthiritis, Immunology & Molecular Biology Lecturer & teacher Senior Life Sciences Editor
Topics covered• Reader expectations• Simple language• Common mistakes• Resources
Why is clear language important? • Avoid rejection • Minimize rounds of revision • Communicate to the world • Get cited • Help establish a reputation • Advance your career
Reader expectations Language requirements 国際舞台で意見交換するには明確な文書表現が重要• Journals are clear regarding their English requirements Brain Structure & Function Language: Manuscripts will be checked by our copyeditors for spelling and formal style. Clear and concise language will help editors and reviewers concentrate on the scientific content of your paper and thus smooth the peer review process.
Reader expectations Japanese scientific writing style • Passive voice • Cause/reason comes first • Followed by the conclusion 採用率を高める科学英語の書き方：日 本人の論文に特徴的な問題点とは. 2011. International Nursing Review, Supplement 151, 34(3), 94−102
Reader expectations English scientific writing style • Active voice • Conclusion stated first • Then reasoning or explanation
Reader expectations Increase readability• Information is easier to understand when placed where most readers expect to find it• Good writers are aware of these expectations
Reader expectations Verb placement• Readers become confused when subject and verb are separated by too much contentThe smallest of the URFs (URFA6L), a 207-nucleotide (nt)reading frame overlapping out of phase the [NH2]-terminalportion of the adenosinetriphosphatase (ATPase) subunit 6gene, has been identified as the animal equivalent of therecently discovered yeast H-ATPase subunit 8 gene.
Reader expectations Avoid reader confusionThe smallest of the URFs is URFA6L, a 207-nucleotide (nt) reading frame overlapping out of phasethe [NH2]-terminal portion of the adenosinetriphosphatase (ATPase) subunit 6 gene, has beenidentified as the animal equivalent of the recently discovered yeast H-ATPase subunit 8 gene.The smallest of the URFs (URFA6L) has been identified as theanimal equivalent of the recently discovered yeast H-ATPasesubunit 8 gene; URFA6L is a 207-nucleotide (nt) reading frameoverlapping out of phase the [NH2]-terminal portion of theadenosinetriphosphatase (ATPase) subunit 6 gene.We identified the smallest of the URFs (URFA6L) as the animalequivalent of the recently discovered yeast H-ATPase subunit 8gene. URFA6L is a … .
Reader expectations Which voice?• Active or passive voice? – Blood samples were collected from 256 patients. – We collected blood from 256 patients. 可能な限り能動態を使う
Reader expectations 2. Active voice Subject Verb Active • Sentences written in the active voice are: simple direct clear easy to read
Reader expectations 3. Stress position • Readers focus on information at the end of a sentence. Subject Verb take-home information
Reader expectations Stress positionThe dog sat when her mistress offered a treat.The dog sat when a treat was offered by her mistress.When the mistress offered her a treat, the dog sat.• Readers, without thinking, concentrate on the end of a sentence. 無意識に文末の情報に重点を置く
Reader expectations 4. Topic position• Readers expect a sentence/phrase to be a story about whoever shows up first Subject Topic position Verb Stress position
Reader expectations Topic position sentence idea idea idea idea Topic link• Linkage and contextThe family went into the courtyard to see the new puppy.The dog sat when her owner offered a treat. Everyonewas so excited they broke into applause. However, as thecourtyard was situated right next to my bedroom, thesound woke me from my sleep.
Reader expectations 5. Topic sentences• Indicates the main idea of a paragraph• Provides the writer with a focus• First sentence of a paragraph• Then discuss/explain the topic• Summarize with a concluding sentence Beginning → Middle → End
Reader expectations ExampleIn his studies of the conditioned reflex, Pavlov workedalmost entirely with dogs and with the salivary reflex.Implicit in all of his work is the notion that everythingthe dog learns from puppyhood on is a result of theassociation of certain events (which happen to occur atthe same time) with the biologically adequate stimulusto some native response such as withdrawing,struggling, eating, sex behavior, or the like. What the dogcan learn… Henry Garrett, “Great Experiments in Psychology”
Simple language Readability “only 4% of readers understand a 27-word sentence the first time” • Your reader should – Only need to read once – Not have to read slowly – Understand your logic immediately
Simple language Sentence length • We examined numerous peer-reviewed journals • Easy to read articles had an average sentence length of 17 words 1文につき1つのアイデア
Simple language Goals to aim for …• Maximum 25–30 words per sentence• Not more than four 30-word sentences in the whole manuscript• Think about ‘reader expectation’ and match the expectation with the contents
Simple language Make it easy for your reader • Simple language is best • Makes your work more relevant • Maximizes understanding • Science is complex
Simple language Simple wordsAvoid Preferredadditional moreadequate enoughapparent clearattempt trydemonstrate showendeavor tryexceedingly very
Simple language More simple wordsAvoid PreferredMagnitude SizeObjective AimPerformed DoneRequested AskedRetain KeepSubsequently LaterSufficient EnoughTerminate EndUtilization Use
Simple language Unnecessary wordsIn order to determine the fractalkine expression in the aorta ofApoE−/− mice and the effect of high-dose aspirin intervention onfractalkine expression and atherosclerotic lesion formation, westudied …To determine the fractalkine expression in the aorta of ApoE−/−mice and the effect of high-dose aspirin intervention onfractalkine expression and atherosclerotic lesion formation, westudied …
Simple language Examples of unnecessary wordsAvoid PreferredFor the reason that BecauseIn the first place FirstIn the not too distant future SoonFour in number FourGreen color GreenSubsequent to AfterPrior to BeforeExcept in a very few instances Usually
Common mistakes Comparisons • Needed in Results and Discussion sections • Compare ‘like’ with ‘like’ • Use ‘with’, not ‘to’ The tumor excised from the pancreas was compared to the liver.The tumor excised from the pancreas was compared with thatThe tumor excised from the pancreas was compared with the liver.from the liver.
Common mistakes ExampleExpression levels of p53 in smokers were compared with non-smokers.Expression levels of p53 in smokers were compared with p53levels in non-smokersExpression levels of p53 in smokers were compared with thosein non-smokers
Common mistakes Comparisons • Relative terms, such as more, higher and greater, require a reference for comparison • Use than or compared with Reactions with the new thermal cycler were faster.Reactions with the new thermal cycler were faster compared withthose in the old cycler.
Common mistakes ‘Between’ or ‘among’?• Use between for comparisons of two groups… the only difference between the original moleculeand the new molecule is ...• Use among for comparisons of more than two groups … significant differences were observed in the H values among bio-, fully- and semi-synthetic molecules
Common mistakes Respectively• ‘Respectively’ is often misused• Used to refer to two corresponding lists – The two values were 143.2 and 21.6, respectively. – The two values were 143.2 and 21.6. – The two tubes were labeled B and S, respectively. – The tubes containing blood and saline were labeled B and S, respectively.
Common mistakes ExampleOxygen detector flow Nitrogen detector flow Hydrogen detector flow85 mL/min 7 mL/min 4 mL/minThe oxygen detector flow was set at 85 mL/min; the nitrogendetector flow was set at 7 mL/min; and, the hydrogen detectorflow was set at 4 mL/min. 28 wordsOxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen detector flows were set at 85, 7and 4 mL/min, respectively. 15 words
Common mistakes Colons and semi-colons• Colons (:) are used to introduce a list• Semicolons (;) are used to separate the items in a list too long for commas• Use ‘and’ before the last item in the list There are a number of journals for surgery manuscripts: General Surgery, published by Springer; the World Journal of Emergency Surgery, published by BioMed Central; and the British Journal of Surgery, produced by Wiley & Sons.
Common mistakes Numbers in the text• Use a space between numbers and units – 10 mL not 10mL• No space is needed before % – 56%• The word “of” should be used to describe amounts – 6 mg of caffeine was …• The word “of” is not needed for concentrations – rats were administered 6 mg/mL caffeine
Coverage and Resources Staffing Plan There is help for you• Books• Style manuals• Writing course• But … not always practical
Coverage and ResourcesStaffing Plan Helpful websites • Paradigm Online Writing Assistant powa.org/ • Springer Exemplar springerexemplar.com/ • Google Scholar scholar.google.com/ • Purdue Online Writing Lab owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/
Coverage and ResourcesStaffing Plan Author Academy
Coverage and ResourcesStaffing Plan Edanz Journal Advisor edanzediting.co.jp/journal_advisor
Coverage and ResourcesStaffing Plan Edanz Journal Selector edanzediting.co.jp/journal_selector
Coverage and Resources Your target journal inStaffing Plan minutes not days Insert your proposed abstract
Coverage and ResourcesStaffing Plan Refine your results Recommended journals Advanced Matching
Coverage and ResourcesStaffing Plan Get more information Refined recommended journals
Coverage and ResourcesStaffing Plan Make a decision Semantic matching terms Journal’s IF, Aims & Scope, and Frequency Similar published articles
Help your readers understand“If you can’t explain something simply,you don’t understand it well.” – Albert Einstein• Write to express not impress• Consider your audience – their native language may not be English 読者に研究を理解してもらう