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10 key elements of a research paper - A writers perspective

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Key parts and steps in writing a research paper and how reviewers see it. Simple but key facts to focus on.

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10 key elements of a research paper - A writers perspective

  1. 1. 10 Key Elements of a Research Paper: A Writers Perspective Dilum Bandara, PhD University of Moratuwa
  2. 2. 1 – Know Your Audience • Review Phase  Reviewers • Aware of domain & problem • Few may be working on exactly the same problem • Want to determine whether work is worthy of publishing • Camera Ready  Researchers • Novice • Expert • General interest on topic • Few working on exactly the same problem • Want to gain knowledge and/or want to solve a specific problem “Every paper tells a story. Know your stor - Jim Kurose
  3. 3. 2 – Follow Template • Conferences & Journals have their own templates • Downloadable from conference/journal website • Carefully read instructions • Strictly follow template • A real test of your word processing skills! • Not following template  Paper Rejection
  4. 4. 3 – Paper Title • Should reflect your work • Should indicate your contribution to knowledge • 2-part titles are ok • Short & simple • Rest of the paper should be able to live up to your title
  5. 5. 4 – Abstract & Key Words • Synopsis of paper not exceeding 150/200 words • Key material to sell your paper • Content • 1/3 – Introduction & motivation to problem • 1/3 – How the problem is addressed • 1/3 – Key results & conclusion • 3-4 key words that cover your topic • Pick key words from related papers
  6. 6. 5 – Introduction • Minimum introduction to topic • Most readers have an idea about topic & its significance • Good motivation on “why” your problem is important • Show gaps in what’s already around/known • Clearly describe the paper’s contribution • What & how you did it • Key results • Someone writing a literature survey should be able to just extract this para • Briefly introduce rest of the paper • Should use less than 20% of paper space
  7. 7. 6 – Related Work • Discuss all literature that’s related to your work • Focus on seminal work & more recent work • Critically evaluate them • Illustrate missing pieces • Don’t paraphrase  Leads to high similarity score • Justify there is a place for your work too • No more than 1-2 sentences • No more than 10% of paper space
  8. 8. 7 – Solution • Explain your proposed solution • Better if a formal problem can be formulated & then explain solution in line with that • Tell how you came up with solution • Clearly state assumptions • Tell logic behind your solution • Logically arrange your ideas • Draw diagrams • Give algorithms • Compare your solution with related work • Give credit to related work • Give enough details s.t. one can replicate your solution
  9. 9. 8 – Performance Evaluation • Present experimental setup, emulator, simulator, etc. • Give enough details s.t. one can run your solution • Did you collect enough samples? • Are results within an accuracy of ±5% and 95% confidence level? • Present findings • Logically ordered • Simple to complex • Explain your graphs, tables, & findings • Draw diagrams & Tables • Simple & clear graphs • B&W & grayscale are better • No screenshots unless they are essential to explain
  10. 10. 9 – Summary • Know difference between Summary & Conclusion • Summarize/conclude your work • Don’t repeat abstract • Tell why your findings are useful • Recognize research limitations • List possible future work • Limitations could lead to future work • No more than 5% of paper space
  11. 11. 10 – Acknowledgement & References • Strictly follow given format • Indicate funding source • Give credit to essential people who contributed to idea or solution • Don’t self acknowledge • Use proper referring style • Use tools to generate/convert citations • Double check final output list of references
  12. 12. Do Repeat • Spell & Grammar check • Use special tools • Choose words carefully • Plagiarism Check • Proof read • Self review next day! • Friend/colleague who is willing to give “hard” feedback • Supervisor • For Camera Ready paper • Address all reviewer comments
  13. 13. Reviewer's Dilemma • Does Title make sense? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults • Does Abstract make sense? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults • Is according to Template? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults • Does Introduction make sense? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults • Is Contribution Clearly sated? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults • Key Related Work discussed? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults • Does Solution matter given Related Work? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults • Propose Solution is understandable? Yes – Read carefully, Else – Find more faults “Deadline was yesterday, I don’t have time, so let me find 2-3 faults that are good enough for me to write a review while rejecting paper”
  14. 14. RESOURCES • 10 Tips to Write a Paper (Jim Kurose) • https://paperpicker.wordpress.com/2006/12/05/10-tips-to-write-a-paper-from-jim- kurose/ • How to Write an Abstract (Philip Koopman) • https://users.ece.cmu.edu/~koopman/essays/abstract.html

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