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Scientific Writing

Step-by-Step Approach for Writing and Publishing Scientific Research Article

Introduction

Completion of research article writing gives immense satisfaction. However, to achieve this satisfaction, considerable time, energy, and mental presence is required. However, a step-by-step approach towards the conclusion reduces the burden and gives satisfactory results.

Inclusions of the Research Articles

To assist the reader for easy comprehension, the format of the research article is almost similar for all the journals. Headings of the article are designed in a way to ensure a smooth flow of the text. The 4 headings i.e. Introduction, methods, results and discussion, and conclusion comprise the body of the article while title and abstract are additional components. The information required under each heading is discussed below:

Title: Title is one of the important parts of the research article. It allows the reader to have an idea about the scope of the article and helps in attracting the target audience. The title allows database search engines to search for articles based on relevance. It has been found that articles with shorter titles are more preferred in citations.

Abstract: The abstract should be clear, concise and provide the reader with an idea about the research article. The abstract is important because based on the abstract, the reader will decide whether to proceed for further reading the article.

Introduction: In this section of the article, the writer should introduce the article and state its importance in improving current knowledge. Usefulness and novelty should be mentioned to increase the reader’s attention and interest.

Methods: This section may be subdivided into various subheadings for better dissemination of information. Various subheadings are subjects, procedures, definitions and criteria, data collection and statistical tools applied to interpret the data. The process is more important than the person who did it thus it is advisable to use the passive language in this section.

Results: Results should be organized in correspondence to the subheadings of the methods section. The author should progress from the simple outcomes to the more complex outcomes. If there is an unexpected result obtained during the study, the author should initiate the result section with that particular result.

Discussion and conclusion: In the discussion section, the author should discuss in detail the outcomes of the study and its relevance in context to the prior literature. The author may also discuss how this study will help in identifying and filling the scientific gap. The study limitations should be clearly defined and further course of actions are advised. In the conclusion section, the author presents the principal findings.

Preliminary Work

Writing a scientific research paper is not an easy task. The process of writing does not only include writing the research rather there are certain other preliminary tasks to be conducted. Here are some of the preliminary tasks along with or before writing:

The decision to writing the paper: There is a saying “Right beginning is half work done”. The same applies to write the research article. Writing a research article is a tedious task and strong commitment and persistence will help to achieve the outcome.

Create a reference list: Be clear about the message you want to convey to the reader. Based on the basics of your research, start searching for the relevant literature to be incorporated into your article. Arrange the literature based on relevance.

Outlining the article: Before start writing the article, prepare an outline ad various sections to be written. This will help you in focusing on one section and time. The outline will also reduce the repeatability of the text.  Write the headings of the section. Outlining the article will help in managing the word count in context with the journal’s guidelines.

Discuss with mentor or professional reviewer: The article will reach the reviewer after you submit it to the journal. Thus, it would be wise to discuss the content of the article with a reviewer known to you. You may also seek advice from your mentor as he may have a lot of experience in publishing research articles.

Writing the draft: In most cases, you may not be able to achieve the desired outcome. Revising the draft is key to the high-quality article. You should start by writing the first draft and revise the text at least twice. In the third draft, when your text gets accurate, you may incorporate the tables and figures. Once all this gets completed, incorporate the abstract.

Revising the Article

Revision of article, both initially and according to the reviewer’s comments are important in getting it published. After writing the final draft, left the article for at least 10 days. After 10 days, start reading, comprehending, and revising the article.  The number of revisions will surprise you which are required to make it perfect. After receiving the comments of reviewer/s, try to revise the article strictly as per the comments.

Submitting the Article

The submission of the article in an appropriate journal is the key to success. You should maintain a balance between undervaluing and overvaluing your paper. The article should be written strictly as per the guidelines of the target journal to reduce the chances of rejection. You should select the target journal based on the scope and area of your research.

Things to Take Care

Here are the things you should take care while writing the research article:

  • Clearly understand the scope of your research.
  • Do not hesitate to take advice from a mentor and reviewer.
  • Provide considerable time for writing.
  • Revise the article according to the reviewer’s comments.
  • Do not forget to include relevant references.
  • Utilize your resources optimally.

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