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Writing for academic publishing in Nursing


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Presentation to the Irish Association of Urology Nurses 12 September 2013

Published in: Health & Medicine, Technology
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Writing for academic publishing in Nursing

  1. 1. N U I MAYN O O T H Ol l sc o i l n a h É i r e a n n M á N u a d
  2. 2. Goals of this Session By the end of the course participants will • Know more about publishing, particularly in the journal literature • Considered how their research and practice might be written up as journal articles • Better understand the mechanics of writing (including structure and style) • Have developed increased confidence and motivation to write
  3. 3. Different Types of Publications • • • • Newsletter Professional magazine Popular Magazine Academic (peerreviewed) Journal • Hybrid Journal • Poster • • • • • Book Review Book Chapter Book (single author) Book (edited collection) Other opportunities – conference presentation, radio broadcast, television, social media
  4. 4. Types of Journal Articles • • • • Research Articles Evidence-Based Practice Articles Clinical Articles Other – case studies, case reports, articles on wide range of topics relating to health care, book reviews, letters to the editor
  5. 5. Sources for writing • • • • • • • Research/thesis A particular project Your practice/everyday work Topic that interests you A paper you presented Other Consider whether you want to collaborate (principal author)
  6. 6. Sample Journals • • International of Urological Nursing (UK): • Urologic Nursing (US): • Seminars in Oncology Nursing (US): • Oncology Nursing Forum (US): • Cancer Nursing Practice (UK):
  7. 7. Sample Journals • British Journal of Nursing (UK): • Journal of Clinical Nursing (UK): • Nursing Standard (UK): • • BJU International • • Journal of Urology •
  8. 8. Identifying Appropriate Journals • Do a database search on your topic to see where else articles on this topic have been published Pubmed Central Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) (Ebscohost) Nurse Author & Editor • Search on Google Scholar • Directory of Open Access Journals – • Who is your audience? What is the purpose of your piece of writing?
  9. 9. Journal Information • Author Guidelines Topics Editorial Board and contactsd Length of articles Types of article – research, practice, theory, case studies, commentaries, Manuscript layout Peer Review Citation style Copyright ( Impact Factor – Web of Science Journal Citation Reports
  10. 10. Drafting a query e-mail • Before writing/submitting • Editor • Single sentences – I am writing an article on… – My experience is this area… – I think that readers of your journal would be interested in… because…
  11. 11. Research-based article • IMRAD format or adaptation Quantitative Studies and Qualitative Studies • Introduction (may include a review of the literature) – Why was the study done? • Methods – What was done? • Results – What did the researcher find? • And • Discussion – What does it mean • Also have acknowledgements and references
  12. 12. Sections in Research Manuscript • • • • Cover letter Copyright transfer page Title Page Abstract (and key words if requested) • Text – Introduction, methods, R esults, Discussion • Acknowledgements • References • Tables (with titles and footnotes) • Figures (with captions) See Oermann, M. & Hays, J. Writing for Publication in Nursing, 2nd ed. New York: Springer, 2011
  13. 13. Practice Articles • • • • Describe practice innovations Experience/Practice Lectures/Presentations Other activities that lead to new information or different perspective on nursing practice • Discuss/Share practice • What is your audience? Specialist or general
  14. 14. Practice-based article • • • • • Title Abstract Introduction Text Conclusion
  15. 15. Task – Defining audience and Purpose • Describe in one sentence the purpose of the piece you are writing • What is the specific audience for your article? • What do they already know about the topic? • What kinds of things are important to this audience? • How will they benefit from your work? • Where has this topic been covered before? • What’s your angle? • Where might you publish it? 10/25/2013 15
  16. 16. Work from an Outline • Order ideas • Sift & eliminate ideas • Contextualise/Give framework • View at a glance • Can work on different sections – writing is not a linear process • Makes the process manageable The reason many aspiring authors fail is that they throw themselves immediately into the activity of writing without realizing it is the forethought, analysis and preparation that determine the quality of the finished product Day, A. (2007) How to Get Research Published in Journals. Burlington, VT.: Ashgate. P. 9
  17. 17. Outlining/Structuring • There are different ways to structure articles • Study the structure of articles in your target journal • Model articles on other articles that work well (template) • Different structures can achieve the same results ways • Be aware of your audience
  18. 18. Title • Stimulate reader’s interest • Working title/final title • Final title should summarise the main idea of the manuscript • Attract and inform the reader • Stand out • Be accurate • Be fully explanatory when standing alone • Facilitate indexing and retrieval (avoid using abbreviations) • Suggested length no more than 12 words (APA Publications Manual) For more on titles consult Hartley, J. (2008) Academic Writing and Publishing: A practical handbook. London: Routledge, p. 23-27
  19. 19. Author’s Name & Institutional Affiliation • Use the same form throughout your career • Omit all titles and degrees (e.g. Dr., PhD) • Where the is more than one author, names should appear in the order of their contributions • Institutional affiliation should appear under the author’s name • Provide an e-mail address for correspondence
  20. 20. Abstract • Generally only required with a peer-reviewed article • Two types – informative and structured • Synopsis – Distils essence • Length determined by journal – typically range from 150 to 300 words
  21. 21. Structured Abstract • • • • • • • • Purpose Design Setting Subjects Intervention Measures Results Conclusions 10/25/2013 21
  22. 22. Keywords • Indexing terms • The way your article will be retrieved by databases/search engines etc. • Avoid unnecessary prepositions especially in and of use library marketing rather than marketing of library • What terms do you use to do searches on this topic?
  23. 23. Introduction • Introduces the substantive content of the paper • Tells why this issue/problem is important • Sets the scene • States the purpose • States the scope • States how issue is addressed • Explains how this work relates to previous work in this area • Usually starts from the general and progresses to the specific • Generally quite brief no more that a sixth of the total article length
  24. 24. Literature review • Tells what others have found on the topic • Provides a context from which to illustrate how the work documented in the rest of the paper extends or advances understanding and knowledge • Demonstrates that the author is familiar with thinking on a topic and understands where their work fits • Highly selective and specific, referring to other pieces of work most relevant to the argument being made • Link your findings and conclusions back to the literature review
  25. 25. Methods • Describes how the study was conducted/how research was carried out • Different types of studies have different methodologies • Subsections where relevant e.g. Participant characteristics, sampling procedures, research design
  26. 26. Results • Summary of collected data • Analysis of data stating findings and how they are being interpreted Where required should supplement the argument made with evidence e.g. statistics, tables, charts, maps, or quotes
  27. 27. Discussion • • • • Examine, interpret and qualify results Draw conclusions and inferences from results Emphasize any theoretical or practical consequences Sometimes combined with results section if relatively brief and straightforward • Reaffirm how the research advances understanding and knowledge • Acknowledge the limitations of research • Outlines how future studies could build on and extend the research and argument reported
  28. 28. Acknowledgements, References, Footnotes, Tables & Figures References • Follow journal guidelines • Complete • Accurate Footnotes • Provide additional content Tables Figures
  29. 29. On Writing If you’re clear in your mind about what you are going to paint, there is no point in painting it (Picasso) I have to start to write to have ideas (Françoise Sagan) Writing is a process of discovery. Sometimes you don't know what you know. You may know it but have no idea how it fits together (Alice Walker) 10/25/2013 29
  30. 30. Writing • To begin writing you have to begin writing • Writing generates ideas • Don’t look for perfection, just write • Give yourself permission to write badly • All writing is rewriting • Good writing can be learned I just put down any sort of rubbish,” a celebrated critic once remarked about his first attempts. And putting down rubbish is good advice…the truth is that once a sentence is lying on the page, it is often shatteringly clear what is right and what is wrong with it. Put it down, and go on putting more of it down. Everything can be mended later Watson, George (1987) Writing a thesis: a guide to long essays and dissertations. London: Longman, p. 39
  31. 31. Writing • • • • • • • • Can start at any point, but generally not conclusion Scientists often write the results section first Pick a structure to work with Structure Narrative /Storytelling A story has a theme, movement, flow Something happens/changes Perhaps try to write your piece from start to finish before beginning editing
  32. 32. Verbs • Use verbs rather than their noun equivalents – Discusses rather than provides a discussion of • Active versus passive verbs • Don’t bury the main verb – should be close to subject • Use strong verbs
  33. 33. Verbs • Study verbs in articles that you think are well written Addresses, argues, asks, concludes, covers, demon strates, describes, discusses, elucidates, enhances, evaluates, examines, expands, explains, explores, i dentifies, maps, outlines, presents, proposes, repo rts, reviews, shows, suggests, summarises, surveys , synthesizes, touches on
  34. 34. Tone • • • • • • tense first or third person Sentences Logical movement from sentence to sentence Paragraphs Signposts
  35. 35. Language • • • • • Cut unnecessary words and phrases Delete unnecessary jargon and acronyms Delete repetitive words Omit unnecessary prepositions – that, on Delete unnecessary adjectives – Helpful tips, terrible tragedy • Delete unnecessary adverbs – very, really, quite, basically, generally,
  36. 36. Positive Language • Use positive rather than negative constructions – The nursing team did not believe the drug was harmful – The nursing team believed the drug was safe – Not important/Unimportant – Did not remember/Forgot
  37. 37. Concise Language • • • • A majority of Due to the fact that At the present time Are of the same opinion • Gave rise to • • • • • Most Because Now Agree Caused
  38. 38. Drafting and Redrafting • • • • • • • All writing is rewriting Draft and redraft Number, date and save drafts Refer back to your abstract Ask a critical colleague to read Revise title, abstract & article Check references against journal guidelines
  39. 39. Drafting and Redrafting • When finished put aside for a period then reread • Spell check • Date and File preprint (pre-refereeing) • Let go • If you have already sent a query e-mail to the editor refer to that in your submission
  40. 40. Submission • Professional Journal – editor • Academic Journal – peer-review • Usually double blind peer review – Accept as is – Accept with revisions – Revise and resubmit – Reject Note: some content in academic journals may not be peer reviewed e.g. book reviews, editorial content, some case studies
  41. 41. Peer review • • • • • Reply to editor indicating what you are going to do Make changes as quickly as possible Reread Resubmit outlining what you have done If you don’t take particular suggestions on board explain why • Keep postprint (post refereering)
  42. 42. Becoming a better writer • • • • • Read - first for story then for style and structure Imitate Write (keep a notebook of practice, ideas etc) Describe, reflect, evaluate Stop waiting for inspiration and a good time to write • Talk/Network • Be strategic – Have a plan – look for links/connections in what you do
  43. 43. Becoming a better writer • • • • • • Good writing communicates an idea clearly Takes time, revision and editing Cut ruthlessly Set realistic goals Give and look for peer support Consider everything you do as potential material for a presentation/paper • Develop a culture of celebration around publication/presentation
  44. 44. Reading • Holland, K. & Watson, R. (2012) Writing for Publication in Nursing and Healthcare: Getting it Right Oxford: Wiley/Blackwell Oermann, M.H. & Hays, J.C. (2011) Writing for Publication in Nursing 2nd. Ed. New York: Springer