School of something FACULTY OF OTHER Publications Master Class Marge Wilson (Pro-Dean for Research in Environment & Alan Haywood (Postgraduate Research.
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School of something FACULTY OF OTHER Publications Master Class Marge Wilson (Pro-Dean for Research in Environment & Alan Haywood (Postgraduate Research Tutor in SEE)
To communicate our work to others To satisfy our funders e.g. NERC To satisfy our egos? To raise the profile of the School/Faculty/University To enhance the School’s position in national research assessment exercises e.g. RAE2008, REF2014 To enhance our promotion prospects (CV etc) To get our next job Why do we publish papers?
Improved job prospects (a CV with several GOOD publications on it will distinguish you from other applicants) Makes it much easier to write up your PhD thesis Parts of your thesis will have already been validated by external PEER REVIEW Tremendous sense of satisfaction in seeing your work in print So what’s in it for me?
Writing papers brings a sense of discipline to your research – it makes you more organised! It is a good incentive to get to grips with graphics software e.g. Corel Draw, Adobe Illustrator; you have to produce good quality diagrams to illustrate your paper The papers you write can be incorporated into your thesis – so your thesis is building up as you go Isn’t it a lot of extra work?
A successful PhD has to contain “material of publishable quality” – so why not get ahead of the game and plan to publish some key papers as you go along? Discuss a “publications plan” with your supervisor(s) – early on in your research; they are the best people to advise on which aspects of your work will make good papers. Such a plan will provide a “structured framework” for your research Planning your research
. Don’t expect to be writing papers for Nature in your first year! BUT it can happen! Decide on your target journal before you start to write. Be ambitious in your choice! Discuss this with your supervisor. What is the journal’s ISI Impact Factor? Is it recognised as a good journal in your field? Does your work fit the Journal ? Has it published papers on similar topics recently? Some Do’s and Don’t’s
What is the core idea that you want to get over? Keep the message simple – ideally just a single idea or “message” Plan out the diagrams and data tables before you start. Do you have all the data you need to substantiate your story? Look at some recent papers in the journal you have decided to publish in. Check the Instructions to Authors (usually on the journal web site) and follow them! Does the Journal have an on-line manuscript submission system? What is the “story”?
Write a draft of your paper (manuscript) Get your supervisor/colleagues to comment on it Revise manuscript (this may require many iterations) SUBMIT your manuscript WAIT ( several weeks to several months) for comments from external reviewers (selected by the Editor of the journal) RECEIVE Editor’s decision – e.g. Minor Revision, Major Revision, Reject REVISE & RESUBMIT – and maybe REVISE again! The publication “cycle”
Editors are your fellow scientists So be respectful in your communications!
The hardest part! Write this last Practice writing “structured abstracts” Look at some examples in different journals DO NOT cut and paste from the main text – the Abstract should stand alone – it should “wet the appetite” of the reader Writing the Abstract
Are you up to date with the current literature?
Have you cited all the relevant literature? Have you actually read and understood what you cite? Be very careful not to plagiarise by copying parts of other’s papers. Many journals use software to check this. The “power of the internet”! Citing the relevant literature
Keep it simple. Use short sentences with a minimum of subordinate clauses Generally use “third person, past tense” – although increasingly “ I did this/ We did that” is becoming commonplace Check spellings and conventions Writing Style