Sometimes assignments of such a kind are unexpected but, anyway, you have to write them from time to time in college. If you have no idea how to write a scientific paper well, we suggest not worrying because this task is rather a little difficult than impossible to complete. Just follow the style guide and use good content — this will help you improve your writing skills and become a better scientific writer.
First of all, think of your audience because it determines the best methods and style of writing. Consider the scientific background of your readers. Think how you can make your paper easier to read. Another important feature of scientific papers is the field you are writing about. If the topic of your work crosses different disciplines, you may need to provide your audience with more information so that they can get a grasp on the fundamentals of all considered fields.
The Format of a Scientific Paper
First of all, we suggest using active voice. Some journals require their authors to use active voice only, but this rule doesn’t apply to all the scientific journals. Thus, you have to clarify it before you start writing. Scientific papers often imply the use of specific terms, so you have to introduce all the terms at the very beginning. In addition, don’t use any slang words.
Another important thing is the style of your paper. Many journals have their own style guides and other materials for authors. Get acquainted with the required style, necessary formatting, and other details, such as word count or font size.
Once you’ve found all necessary information regarding the style, start organizing your paper in a proper order. Begin your paper with an abstract and then get to an introduction. The abstract provides a brief summary of the paper. A central part focuses on methods, materials used, and results. Below, we are going to consider the structure of a scientific paper in more detail.
We suggest starting with the Materials and Methods because this section won’t take a lot of time and effort. Describe used methods and make sure that your readers will easily understand all information from this section. The point is that data from this section must help anyone replicate your experiments. When describing materials, include necessary references to the manufacturer and specify catalog numbers.
If your study requires certain ethical approvals, you have to address this issue after you describe the used methods.
Create a specific section for the results of your study. Remember that you have to take a neutral position regarding results: don’t discuss any obtained data, just describe it and include charts or tables if necessary. You will have a particular section to express your opinion and draw conclusions.
The Discussion section is a place where you have to interpret your results, considering them in the context of already existing materials on your subject. Here you can draw some conclusions and tell what experiments may become possible in the future. This part of the paper is aimed to persuade your readers that your study is important and useful. However, don’t make rhetoric your main goal. Avoid repeating yourself, and support all your claims by evidence.
Once you’ve finished writing these sections, get to a literature review. The literature review is a part of the introduction. It is also focused on the importance of your work and gaps that it fills. End your introduction with a hypothesis and objectives. Don’t forget that the introduction must be short and comprehensive.
Analyze your paper and write a brief summary. This is the Abstract. We suggest writing it when the entire paper is completed. The length of this section may vary depending on the requirements of a particular journal. However, usually, this section doesn’t exceed 250 words. The summary must provide your readers with a general idea of your study and acquaint them with the most important findings. Write a brief conclusion about findings. The most important thing about the abstract is that it must encourage your readers to read more.
Create a title for your scientific paper. Make sure that it’s specific and directly related to your study. Don’t make your title too long and avoid abbreviations or acronyms.
You can add some tables or figures. Tables are usually used for raw data, while figures can be really useful for comparisons. However, if you can deliver your information in a couple sentences, there’s no need for any illustrations. Make sure that all images meet necessary requirements regarding their format.
In the end, read the entire paper and fix all mistakes. Make sure that you have used the proper citation format and that your quotes reflect your statements correctly. Double-check your paper and ask for help if you need.