Scientific writing tips

This section offers some guidelines on how to use language to write a clear and concise scientific report. Remember these are guidelines only; scientific writing is a form of creative art, and there are exceptions to the rules. 

Scientific writing is formal, but there is still room to express your personality and style. Aim for a concise and elegant style with well-constructed sentences and paragraphs that flow well between topics.

Avoid:

  • Wordy sentences.
  • So much jargon that even an expert can't understand what you're trying to say.
  • Colloquialisms (eg, slang and sayings).
  • Overusing the word very – it is often unnecessary.
  • Contractions (eg, write ‘is not’ instead of ‘isn’t’).
  • Vague statements.
    • Instead of: “The destruction of habitats is bad”.
    • Be more specific: “The destruction of habitat is detrimental to many species, because … ”.
 
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