Is your thesis or manuscript ready for the supervisors, examiners and reviewers? Find out now...

Five essential 'signposts' for a clear thesis chapter or journal manuscript

 

Why do I need to think about 'signposts' in my scientific writing?

When you work on a research project for some time, you become an expert. All of the little important details of your study and experiments become embedded in your brain. You probably even dream about those cells or patients!

However, when we start to write about our research, it can be easy to assume our readers - the thesis examiners or journal reviewers - know all of these...

Continue Reading...

The simplest way to assess if your figures and tables are complete

It can be difficult to decide what to include in your figures and tables in your thesis or manuscript.

How can you make sure they are complete and informative?

My supervisor on my industry placement year taught me the one-page rule and I use it every day!

First, let's pretend you print out one of your figures or tables on one page.

Then, imagine you give the page to a good undergrad/MSc student working in the lab next door - someone who understands "science" but who doesn't know your...

Continue Reading...

Quick guide to better tables in your science PhD thesis or journal manuscript

Tables are a crucial part of your manuscript and thesis as they hold so much information.

It's really important to take the time to format your tables correctly and make sure the data is complete and understandable. 

I like to think of the 'one-page rule' when considering if my table is complete. 

Ask yourself: If I printed out my table, along with the title and table footnotes, could a good undergrad/MSc student working in my lab understand what I did?  (without...

Continue Reading...

Creating tables in scientific papers: row and column titles, units, error values and sample sizes

 
This is the second post in our series about creating and editing scientific tables. In the first post, we saw how basic table formatting and effective table titles could be used to improve an example of a poorly constructed table.

This post will deal with table row and column titles, units, error values and sample sizes.  Let’s continue with the example table that we began to improve in the first post.

  

Fig. 1: Improved table after placing values...

Continue Reading...

Creating tables in scientific papers: basic formatting and titles

 

Tables are a very important part of scientific papers. A good table should present the data simply, clearly and neatly, and allow the reader to understand the results without having to look at other sections of the paper. A bad table can be very confusing, and may reduce the chances of your paper being accepted.

In this post, we will look at the basic rules for creating effective scientific tables.

Let’s begin with an example of a bad table, highlighting some...

Continue Reading...

How to avoid 12 common scientific writing errors that annoy journal reviewers

 

In this post, I’m going to provide a quick overview of the most common basic errors our editors see in scientific manuscripts.

 

1. Check for spelling mistakes

This is obvious, yet it is surprising how many spelling mistakes our editors see in manuscripts. Firstly, use the spell check feature, making sure it is applied to all of the text in the file. Secondly, choose the correct language (e.g., US/American English or UK/British English) for your target journal or thesis...

Continue Reading...
Close

50% Complete

Simple, bite-sized tips from an English scientific editor, delivered as short videos you can watch in less time than it takes to drink a coffee.

We know the most common mistakes in scientific writing - and we want you to avoid these errors. 

These easy-to-understand videos will show you how to avoid basic mistakes and help you write manuscripts with more confidence.

You'll be able to apply this knowledge immediately, so you can spend more time actually doing research.