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Science writing courses (graduate)

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Published: 15 Aug 2007

Need help with your science writing?

If you're like most scientists, explaining your research to others can be challenging.

To help you communicate your ideas to specialists and non-specialists alike, Prof. Linda Cooper offers two intensive graduate seminar courses, Writing Science Articles 1 and Writing Science Articles 2. The writing skills taught in these courses can be applied to the full manuscript, grant proposals and review articles.

Writing Science Articles 1 (REDM 610)

According to journal editors, more people read the Abstract than any other part of the scientific manuscript. If readers are convinced by the Abstract, then they'll read the entire paper. Writing Science Articles 1 focuses on several key aspects of the Abstract, including its structure, distinguishing the most important finding from secondary data, making logical connections between ideas, and limiting specialized terminology. In addition, course participants learn several editing techniques to make their writing clear and persuasive.

Writing Science Articles 2 (REDM 710)

This course focuses on the Introduction and Discussion section of a well-written manuscript. Course participants learn to write persuasively about their research for the specialist and non-specialist alike. In addition, students learn to structure their manuscripts to ensure that their major findings receive appropriate attention, distinguishing them from secondary, supporting data. To help bridge the gap between researchers and editors, an editor of a major scientific journal will explain the peer review process.

Course schedule

Writing Science Articles 1 (REDM 610) meets for 6 1/2 weeks on Tuesday and Thursday from 10:05-1:05, from September to mid-October. A second course is offered from January to mid-February.

Writing Science Articles 2 (REDM 710) meets for 6 1/2 weeks on Tuesday and Thursday from 10:05-1:05, from mid-October to December. A second course is offered from mid-February to April. Whichever semester you choose, be sure to register at the start of the semester before add/drop period is finished (even though REDM 710 starts in the middle of the term, i.e., mid-October for Fall and mid-February for Winter).

Please contact linda [dot] cooper [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Linda Cooper) for further information or visit our website.

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