FSK-8002 Scientific writing: why and how?


Writing and publishing scientific papers requires a lot of practice. What are the best practices in your field of science, and why do journals reject papers? What about your English grammar, is there room for improvement?

Recommended for PhD candidates in their first or second year.

Prework
All participants are required to work on their own manuscripts during the course. A manuscript must be submitted to Canvas two weeks in advance of the course (7 Oct 2019). This manuscript may be at an early or late stage, and it is a great opportunity for you to get the writing process started. For first year PhD students, consider using a manuscript based on your Master thesis.

General literature and resources for scientific writing are available on Canvas.

Course (21 – 25 Oct 2019)
Three days (21 – 23 Oct) of lectures covering the publishing and peer-review process, and how to present figures and tables. Two days (24 – 25 Oct) are dedicated to a workshop on scientific English with a focus on grammar.

Location: MH U8.121

Group work
Four participants with similar scientific background are grouped together to work on their manuscripts. It is recommended that the group works together as follows:

  • An experienced researcher reads through the submitted manuscripts (deadline 7 Oct 2019), gives general comments on structure and returns the manuscript by course start.
  • The group meets 3-4 times over the next month depending on the number of manuscripts. At each meeting, one manuscript should be the main focus. This manuscript should have incorporated the comments received previously from the experienced researcher.
  • The manuscript in focus needs to be distributed to the group at least three working days in advance so that all members can formulate suggested improvements and constructive feedback.
  • When all manuscripts have been discussed, and all feedback incorporated, the final version must be submitted in Canvas by the deadline 22 Nov 2019.

The aim is to improve your own manuscript, and to practice giving and receiving feedback.

The improvement of your manuscript, active participation during group meetings and input to the other participants’ manuscripts makes you eligible for the exam. Some may not have their own manuscript ready, but may be eligible for the exam through active participation during meetings.

Exam
You will be tested in the role of peer reviewer. Choose between two fictive manuscripts, one from social sciences and one from natural sciences. Complete the reviewer form and formulate concrete feedback, including specific comments on mistakes, suggestions of improvements, etc. Specify which page/line number you refer to. This is is not a test of your skills within the respective scientific topics. The focus is on how a manuscript should be formatted to meet both the journal’s and the scientific standard.

The exam must be submitted by the deadline 2 Dec 2019 at 12.00.

Read more and register in the course catalogue: https://uit.no/utdanning/emner/emne/619165/fsk-8002

Registration deadline is 1 Sept 2019.