Telling people about research is just as important as doing it. But many competent researchers are wary of scientific writing, despite its importance for sharpening scientific thinking, advancing their career, obtaining funding for their work and growing the prestige of their institution.
This second edition of David Lindsay's popular book Scientific Writing = Thinking in Words presents a way of thinking about writing that builds on the way good scientists think about research. The simple principles in this book will help you to clarify the objectives of your work and present your results with impact. Fully updated throughout, with practical examples of good and bad writing, an expanded chapter on writing for non-scientists and a new chapter on writing grant applications, this book makes communicating research easier and encourages researchers to write confidently.
It is an ideal reference for researchers preparing journal articles, posters, conference presentations, reviews and popular articles; for students preparing theses; and for researchers whose first language is not English.
Preface to first edition
Preface to second edition
SECTION 1: Thinking about your writing
Chapter 1: A matter of attitude
Chapter 2: The fundamentals of building the scientific article
SECTION 2: Writing about your thinking
Chapter 3: The Title
Chapter 4: The Introduction
Chapter 5: The Materials and Methods
Chapter 6: The Results
Chapter 7: The Discussion
Chapter 8: The Summary or Abstract
Chapter 9: The other bits
SECTION 3: Editing for readability and style
Chapter 10: Eliminating verbal stumbling blocks
Chapter 11: Improving readability
Chapter 12: Submitting and revising
SECTION 4: Thinking and writing beyond the scientific article
Chapter 13: Oral presentations
Chapter 14: Posters
Chapter 15: Literature reviews
Chapter 16: Theses
Chapter 17: Articles for non-scientists
Chapter 18: Grant proposals
David Lindsay was a researcher and teacher in animal biology and behaviour at The University of Western Australia for 33 years. He initiated formal studies in writing for undergraduate and postgraduate students. Now retired from active research, he teaches scientific writing to scientists all over the world.
Lindsay's nitty-gritty guide to style and clarity covers all aspects of scientific writing for both text and oral presentation. This concise guide demonstrates through good and bad examples how a well-reasoned and well-expressed argument helps focus thinking to make a memorable impact.
- S.E. Wiegand, Choice, Vol 49 No 1, September 2011