Mastering Academic Writing in the Sciences provides a comprehensive and coherent step-by-step guide to writing in scientific academic disciplines, mapping the steps involved in the writing process: from acquiring and organizing sources of information, to revising and editing early drafts, to proofreading the final product. It is an invaluable resource for those writing a PhD thesis, research paper, dissertation, grant application, or report. Writing such documents can turn into a painful experience for both students and their supervisors, as well as for experienced researchers in any field. Mastering Academic Writing in the Sciences aims at easing that pain, by providing clear guidance on what to write and how to write it.
Chapter 1. Before You Begin
Chapter 2. The PreWriting Step
Chapter 3. The Drafting Step
Chapter 4. The Revising Step
Chapter 5. The Editing Step
Chapter 6. The Proofreading Step
Chapter 7. The Technical Stuff
Chapter 8. Worked-out Examples
Chapter 9. Section Templates
Chapter 10. Elements of English Grammar
Marialuisa Aliotta is Professor of Experimental Nuclear Astrophysics at the University of Edinburgh, UK. Her research interests focus on the nuclear reactions in stars that produce the energy that makes them shine and contribute to the creation of all elements apart from primordial hydrogen and helium. To date, she has published over 80 refereed papers and offers highly popular workshops on academic writing at various Scottish Universities. She is also a keen mentor to PhD students and early career academics.
"This is really a must-have book for everyone, student or expert, planning to write an academic text in scientific disciplines on any subject and of any type and length, from a PhD thesis to a journal paper. It describes effectively all the necessary steps to obtain the best possible result: from gathering the needed information to proof reading. It also gives beneficial tips for managing (and saving) time during the writing process and provides several useful examples and templates for any section of a paper or thesis. It is really a step by step guide: following it you will certainly be able to write an effective, comprehensive and enjoyable academic text."
– Alessandra Guglielmetti, Professor of Physics, University of Milano
"The bar is rising higher and higher; graduate and post-doctoral students, university faculty, and research scientists in all fields are expected to write more, publish repeatedly, and maintain a consistent level of productivity throughout their careers. These expectations – courtesy of the ever-increasing competition for academic jobs – do not come with instruction manuals. Yet books such as Mastering Academic Writing in the Sciences: A Step-by-Step Guide become that missing instruction manual for academic writers in the "hard" and social sciences. Alliotta's text offers something on almost everything important for meeting these expectations with good-quality academic writing: from establishing a writing habit, to developing one's own writing templates. Certain recommendations are useful for non-native-speakers of English, and worked examples come in handy for everyone. Academic writers of all ranks, but especially those beginning their academic journey, will benefit from having this book and its resources at their fingertips. A blend of practical exercises, light humor, checklists, self-assessment questions, and additional resources make the text both a joy to read and a priceless toolkit."
– Patricia Goodson, PhD, Presidential Professor for Teaching Excellence, Texas A&M University
"What early-career scientist wouldn't benefit from the advice of a wise, experienced writing mentor? In this indispensible new book, astrophysicist Marialuisa Aliotta serves up sage professional counsel on all manner of writing-related topics – from drafting and editing to grammar and syntax – with humour and humanity."
– Professor Helen Sword, Professor and Director, Centre for Learning and Research in Higher Education, University of Auckland
" [...] a must-read guide for anyone writing in scientific academic disciplines. Learn the key-principles from one of the best."
– Aurora Tumino, Professor of Physics, Kore University & INFN-LNS
"At last: a comprehensive, accessible guide that takes writing in the sciences seriously. Professor Aliotta's approach to scientific writing is systematic, thorough and simple: she breaks down the process into steps that take the reader from preparation and pre-writing through drafting, revision and editing to proofreading. Each step corresponds to a chapter that outlines key considerations fleshed out with practical tips. The final chapters, which focus on issues distinct to the sciences and include worked-out examples, are particularly welcome. Reading Aliotta's writing is like listening to expert advice over a relaxed cup of coffee. Her tone is friendly and down-to-earth, and she moves between the big picture and detail with lucid ease. Another strength of this book is the way it combines a scientific perspective with linguistic aspects of academic discourse yet avoids lapsing into jargon. Doctoral students in the sciences will particularly benefit from this timely publication."
– Dr Mimo Caenepeel, Research Communication Scotland