Questions tagged [writing-style]

Questions about the tones, turns of phrase and other writing patterns that are appropriate for writing in an academic context.

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0
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2answers
92 views

Referencing earlier passages: Cross reference or “as discussed earlier”

I am looking for stylistic advice regarding the (over) use of cross-references. For instance, using cross-references in Latex through \ref{...} for major structural blocks like chapters and sections ...
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1answer
81 views

Difference between inclusion and exclusion criteria [closed]

Authors frequently report criteria of selecting subjects in studies in two separate categories, inclusion and exclusion criteria, e.g.: Inclusion criteria: age between 18-60 has the ...
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4answers
168 views

In a paper, how would you name a part that describes the big picture before the technical details

I have been struggling with finding the right title for a section in a scientific paper (in computer science but I think it can apply to many other fields). I know it's not the first time I encounter ...
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3answers
160 views

Placement of numerical references (“[1]”)

I kind of struggle with my students. I always told them to put the reference number (identification) close to the cited object - to make really clear what is the cited object. For example: The ...
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1answer
54 views

Is it unnecessary to write “Please refer to xx paper for detail” after talking about framework presented in this paper?

I wrote a paragraph about a framework from a paper xx. Is it still necessary to mention "Please refer to xx paper for detail" at the end of this paragraph? It is a thesis.
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1answer
66 views

What pronoun should theses use? [duplicate]

It is generally courtesy to use the plural 'we' or 'our' in papers, even when the primary author was the only contributor. While using personal pronouns in academic papers is typically a very bad idea,...
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0answers
273 views

What is the Latin term “pace” used for when referencing other scholars?

I frequently come across references to other scholars like: In period P, syntactic construct C did not have function F (pace Smith 2000). I understand that pace here signals that Smith (2000) ...
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1answer
89 views

Is PCB layouting and manufacturing process added in dissertation? [closed]

Should I add PCB layouting and manufacturing process pictures in dissertation?
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2answers
248 views

In a mathematics article, how much of the argument can be given outside of “proof” environments?

I'm writing an article containing one main theorem, with the other results essentially corollaries of that theorem. The largest part of the article is thus spend proving this main theorem. It feels ...
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2answers
157 views

Conjunctive adverbs in academic writing

As scientists, researchers and scholars, how do you feel when you read a scientific document that contains a lot of conjunctive adverbs, like however, in addition, etc? Does it sound non-scientific ...
70
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12answers
11k views

Is there any good reason to write “it is easy to see”? [closed]

Many academic papers, particularly in mathematics and similar fields, use the phrase "it is easy to see that..." (e.g. in a mathematical proof). I never understood why this sentence is used. Such a ...
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0answers
219 views

When is satire (un)productive in academic discussion? [closed]

I just published a satirical article, entitled A modest proposal for restoration ecology, in a serious journal, namely, Restoration Ecology, and it has a serious argument. The intent was to use satire ...
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7answers
8k views

Should I simplify my writing in a foreign country?

As a native English speaker studying in the Netherlands, I often find myself writing (not published) English papers for a Dutch audience, and I worry I'm alienating my superiors with my writing. I ...
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1answer
45 views

Referencing cited authors [duplicate]

This problem comes up a lot when I write text that describes other's work. to enable personalized Web searches was first proposed in [32], however in [9] it was showed to be computationally ...
3
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1answer
155 views

Is the phrase “results show” appropriate in academic writing?

I once heard of a professor saying that it is not appropriate to say that "results show", because it is not the results that actually "show" anything, and a more appropriate way of putting it would be ...
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0answers
21 views

Difference between proposing a research framework and research approach

I would like to get some concrete examples as to what is the difference between saying that I am presenting a research framework and a research approach. Take the field of robotics or any other ...
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1answer
101 views

How to response to the editor for a minor suggestion given by the reviewer via a formal letter?

I submitted a paper and after about five months the editor sent an email: "I have decided that your manuscript can be accepted for publication after you have carried out the corrections as suggested ...
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1answer
108 views

Hyperbole language [closed]

I received feedback from my tutor saying that my use of “in other words” was hyperbole. My understanding of hyperbole is that it’s exaggerated language. How is “in other words” an exaggeration?
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1answer
57 views

What style to choose MLA or APA? [closed]

I will be writing an essay about Brexit and I am confused on which style of writing to use.
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5answers
7k views

What's the purpose of writing one's academic biography in the third person?

I see some academics – both professors and grad students – write their biography on their university webpages in the third person, and it sounds really weird. What's the purpose of writing about ...
2
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2answers
137 views

Colloquial forms (let's…) in articles

I am writing an article for a peer reviewed journal in the field of literature, and I am wondering about the use of colloquial expressions like: "Let's take a step back", or "Let's look at the data", "...
4
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1answer
97 views

Which writing style for uncertainties?

There are different ways of writing uncertainty. The siunitx manual says "In some fields, it is common to give the uncertainty in a number in brackets after the main part of the number... ...
0
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1answer
118 views

What's the proper way to (APA) reference a settlement agreement?

I want to reference an exhibit from the following document (it's been split into separate parts): Exhibits: https://targetbreachsettlement.com/Portals/0/Documents/Settlement%20Agreement%20Exhibits....
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0answers
18 views

Speech Versus Quotation Marks for Interview/Video Data (Chicago Style, British English)

I'm using British English and Chicago style guide. I'm quoting a mixture of interview data, and data from videos available on the net, as well as academic literature. I know obviously the academic ...
4
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5answers
332 views

What's an appropriate phrasing of a caveat about self-citation?

I'm writing some report, and at a certain point I give an example by citation. The citation format is such that you don't see any names (e.g. "[123]") without visiting the bibliography; or maybe it's ...
3
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1answer
160 views

References must be cited vs. need not be cited

In reviewing publishing guidelines prior to submission to a journal, it is listed that "References need not be cited in text." This is also listed in the style guide for the associated professional ...
5
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1answer
205 views

How do I phrase (in my thesis) that results in an important study are wrong?

The title probably comes off wrong, I tried to keep it short. I do not necessarily want to make an absolute statement like "that is wrong". But I do need to address the problems I am facing with a ...
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1answer
123 views

How can I refer to multiple equations with “Eq. (i)” style?

Assume the manuscript format for referencing the equations is as "Eq. (i)". How can I properly refer to multiple equations at once? For example which of the followings is more acceptable? In Eq. (1), ...
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0answers
66 views

Experience with paid English grammar and style software for writing papers?

I'm looking to suggest to our institute to invest in a paid software for helping writing, along the lines of Grammarly Premium, Antidote 10 or something similar. Does anyone have any experience with ...
3
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5answers
220 views

If I define acronyms in the abstract, should I define them again in the rest of the paper?

I've noticed in some papers (CS) that even if the authors define acronyms in the abstract, they restate them once again in the rest of the paper. It is like "what happens in the abstract stays in the ...
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2answers
80 views

Flow of the Discussion section

Some journals expect the Discussion to have the following structure and order (with some flexibility): summary of results strengths and weaknesses interpretation/context/comparison with previous ...
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2answers
419 views

see/cf. followed by e.g. / for example

Consider the following sentences: foo is bar (see, for example, baz). foo is bar (see, e.g., baz). foo is bar (cf. for example baz). foo is bar (cf. e.g., baz). Which of these are valid to use, and ...
6
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2answers
2k views

Using well-established abbreviations for new concepts in the same field

Should a researcher try her best to avoid using existing abbreviations (such as IEEE, WHO, DNA, ANOVA, BMI, CERN, NASA, UNESCO, OPCW, NHS, CDC ...) that are (well-)known in her fields, when creating ...
13
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5answers
2k views

How to phrase omissions correctly in a thesis?

This might be a strange question, but I am currently thinking about a good phrase to use if I want to emphasize that the theoretical omissions I am making are not caused by neglect, laziness, or ...
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1answer
33 views

Inline referencing chapters, sections, subsections, etc [duplicate]

I am currently in the process of writing my Master's thesis using the LaTeX class supplied by my university. This class uses a document structure similar to report: Starting with chapters, then ...
7
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1answer
1k views

Do I need to cite a source when defining terms?

In my research paper, I have set aside space to define terms (each having a bullet point). My confusion is how I go about defining these terms. Do I quote a dictionary, another research paper in the ...
15
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4answers
2k views

Is a citation typically considered plural or singular in academia?

My question parallels that of https://english.stackexchange.com/q/99886/117318, which asks whether "Gamma et al." should be considered singular or plural for verb conjugation. The top and accepted ...
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1answer
99 views

More or less sections/subsections in a journal article?

When writing an academic paper, sections help organize the paper and make it more navigable for the reader. I can imagine a number of pros/cons of having more or less sections in a paper, but I'm not ...
5
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1answer
124 views

What tense should we use when referring to a paper or experiments from other researchers?

While writing the literature review section, I am confused about which tense should I use (past, present perfect, or present) while referring to other people's work. I understand that established ...
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0answers
62 views

Writing a thesis: how to organize the content?

I have to start writing a thesis for my master's degree. The thesis itself is about machine learning. In particular, I developed an environment that simulate a real world robotic system and applied ...
1
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1answer
47 views

How to use “can” or “could” when referring to a methodology?

If I say "This methodology can/could be used in the research in this area, e.g. (the relevant paper)", should I use can? If no examples is given, should I use could? (to emphasize possibility?)
3
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3answers
339 views

Is it OK to use “/” in scientific writing?

For example, would it be OK to write: Many of these articles belong to School of Thought A and/or School of Thought B. What about the other cases in general just to replace "or" with "/"? E.g. This ...
0
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1answer
31 views

How to italicize technical which is explained in Introduction but defined in another section later according to APA?

I am currently writing a paper, which starts with an "Introduction" which is followed by a "Definition" section. I plan to briefly explain a technical term in "Introduction" and define it more ...
3
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1answer
45 views

How to properly write a brand, corporations in my report?

I have a lab report where I have to show my results using PSpice simulation software. I take screenshots from my screen to illustrate my results and paste those images inside my report. Below a figure,...
5
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3answers
979 views

Writing High-Quality Research Papers [closed]

I have submitted a manuscript to a reputable journal, the article was rejected because it didn't pass the grammar check. The journal editor also mentioned the low quality of the figures. My ex-...
2
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2answers
906 views

If I have a list of abbreviation at the beginning of a paper, do I still need to give the full word when I first mention the term in paper?

Do I still need to write e.g. "willingness to pay (WTP)" when there is already a list of abbreviations containing WTP at the beginning of my paper?
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1answer
71 views

Can I have two system models in the same paper, for the same research?

I am writing a paper in the field of telecommunication. I would distribute my paper into two parts. In the first (more general) part, the system performance for all mobile-phone towers is considered. ...
2
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0answers
105 views

How to change a style guide

I'm an engineering graduate student whose high school English teachers drilled to use active voice. Now that I'm reading and writing technical papers, I can't stand the often ambiguous and verbose ...
3
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2answers
119 views

The best way to refer readers to other paper(s) for more details

Sometimes you need to refer readers to a reference for more details about a subject. I wonder what is the best way to accomplish this. Or if there is a specific way to do it for scientific papers that ...
1
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1answer
78 views

Possessive case when there are post nominal letters [closed]

If a person's name comes with post nominal letters, e.g., John Smith PhD or Mary Green MD, which of the following is the correct/better way of forming the possessive? (A): John Smith PhD's student; ...