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Successful Scientific Writing: A Step-by-Step Guide for the Biological and Medical Sciences Spiral-bound – 11 Oct 2007


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Product details

  • Spiral-bound: 251 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 3 edition (11 Oct. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521699274
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521699273
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.9 x 22.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 540,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

'This book is beyond reproach and should be regarded as compulsory reading for all biomedical and science undergraduate and postgraduate students and all others likely to have to write or edit scientific reports.' The Times Higher Education Supplement

'… very well organized and easy to scan for useful tips … will soon become one of the more well-thumbed volumes on our laboratory bookshelf.' Trends in Neuroscience

'… pragmatic, well-written and comprehensive … each stage - from marshalling ideas through bashing out a first draft, revising it, honing it for publication and correcting it in proof - is demystified with exercises and examples.' New Scientist

'…does not disappoint. It is everything a 'How to' book needs to be, stuffed with plain common sense and sprinkled with useful tips.' The Biologist

'… strongly recommended for all geoscientists. There are three possible ways to use it. The first is to read it as a normal book from the first page to the last … The second way is to use it as a reference … The third way is … as a textbook … Despite of what way to choose, you will find this book always very suitable. Reading of any passage is enjoyable and stimulating. The book in the whole is a great success …' Zentralblatt for Geologie und Palaeontologie

Book Description

Provides user-friendly, detailed and practical advice for students and researchers, enabling them to communicate their work effectively through published literature. The abundant examples and self-help exercises can be applied to many scientific writing contexts and disciplines. Well-structured, comprehensive and entertaining, it is useful for classroom courses, seminars or improving individual skills.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 17 Jun. 2009
Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
I received this book today and i'm already halfway through it, not because it's a small book but because of the style of writing (easy to read, short paragraphs etc) and the fact that it has me excited about writing my dissertation!

So far I'm loving it...it has helpful tips from brainstorming an idea to laying out your paper to getting your work published. The book runs in a logical fashion with sections that you could easily pick out when and if needed. I've read books on this same topic which haven't really helped (hence why I bought this one!) and have got to say that this is THE book that's going to help me get my work published!
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By Mrs. L. Overvoorde on 24 Feb. 2013
Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
This is a great little handbook for anyone studying biology or medical science at degree or higher level.
I am study for an undergraduate masters in Biomedical Science and, having bought it in my final semester, I really wish I had known about this book sooner.
This is aimed mainly at writing in a scientific journal-article style so I have found it particularly useful for writing up my research project, but has great useful tips that would have been great for other pieces of work

- I highly recommend this book.
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By JR on 28 May 2013
Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
I have just started my research post and I'm also in the middle of writing a paper for a journal. This book certainly helps to keep me on track of my writing and it highlights what I need to do when it comes to writing my thesis.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 15 reviews
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Watch what you eat! 5 Mar. 2000
By Donald F. Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Words can hardly express the beauty and cleverness of "Successful Scientific Writing" by Matthews, Bowen and Matthews as a step-by-step guide on how to write scientific reports for publication in English. I am using this book for a course that I teach on scientific writing at the Postgraduate School of Health Sciences at Aarhus University in Denmark, and I find it to be perfect! Before this book was published, there was none that dealt so well and so entertainingly with so many aspects of what it actually takes to prepare a manuscript for publication in a scientific journal. Many young (and old) scientists are good thinkers, but they are often poor writers! Thus, although they may have been able to design and carry out an experiment, they often lack the ability to express what they have done clearly and concisely. This book is for them! The first few chapters provide mainly words of encouragement for getting the writing process underway. There are also remarkable bits of advice, such as the notion of avoiding certan snacks that could derail ones momentum. In my view, the crux of the book appears in chapters 5, 6 and 7 in which extraordinarily lucid and practical instructions and exercises are presented for improving one's ability to write scientifically. There are also tips on how to optimize word-processing so that the manuscript submitted to the editor of a journal is most likely to be accepted for publication. Perhaps some old-timers in Science can do without this book, but they should nevertheless have a copy of it on hand for their students.
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
A Must-Get For All Scientists! 10 Dec. 1998
By Steve M. Potter - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is a funny, well-written, thorough, and authoritative book that goes through every step in the process of creating a journal article, including some topics unique to this process, like how to deal with multi-author editing, peer review, and lit searches. Lots of great advice about how to overcome writer's block. Although the book is written with biomedical science in mind, the advice on grammar, style, structure, and process management is useful to all technical writers. No scientist should be without it.
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Good, but could be better 8 July 2003
By "lhiver" - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Our lab used this book for a study group on effective scientific writing. We are located in Korea, so with the exception of the instructor and I, all participants were not native speakers of English. As a result, this review is from the viewpoint of foreign students. It is based on chapter reviews written by the members of our lab after finishing the book.
The book is just what it claims to be, a step-by-step approach to writing a scientific manuscript intended for publication. The first chapter helpfully furnishes a checklist (Table 1.3) for preparing a research paper. The chapter is actually a summary of the rest of the book so a reader already in the process of writing can easily find which chapter they wish to skip to via Table 1.3.
In the subsequent chapters, the authors provide good advice accompanied by helpful tables, examples and exercises, although the figure chapter could have used more tips on actually preparing the figures. Examples of poorly prepared and corrected figures would be a useful study aid. One student suggested that the second chapter on computer use was not particularly informative for graduate-level students. Regarding the chapter on grammar (chapter 6), another student pointed out that in some scientific articles, ungrammatical sentences are not corrected in order to effectively deliver the point.
The overall use of informal expressions and phrases seemed intended to make the text livelier for English-speaking students, but was confusing for several participants with English as a second language. We would like to suggest that the authors take their own advice and refrain from using slang and jargon. Several of us liked Appendix 2 and thought it was a good read for those unfamiliar with the practice of journal editors.
Apparently the authors had intended to attract those who had not already submitted a manuscript to read their book, but Successful Scientific Writing contains many helpful pointers for published scientists and journal editors, as well.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Useful but disappointing 15 Jun. 2009
By M Rudock - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Spiral-bound
This book provides a useful description of the entire process of writing manuscripts, from information acquisition and literature searches to a very lengthy description of the editing process. There is very little information on the actual contents of the manuscript. I was looking for an in-depth description of each section of the manuscript and possibly some suggestions or helpful hints. Writing of the manuscript and the contents of each section is limited to a few sentences on each section. I was looking for a book that guides someone early in their scientific career through the process of writing the actual manuscript, rather than focusing so heavily on the editing process, as this book does.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Scientific Writing - A difficult task made easier 20 Nov. 2003
By David S. Hodgson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
"Successful Scientific Writing" is a well written, user friendly and sometimes humorous guide to effective scientific writing. Even the wire, lay open binding is user friendly. The text is up to date, well organized and provides guidance on effective use of computers and software in the entire scientific endeavor. Of course the primary strength is in helping the reader through the writing and publication of the scientist's efforts. This concise work would be especially appropriate as a text in scientific writing classes. The exercises provided would be great student assignments. Additionally the exercises are fun and enhance points made in the text. Matthews, et al have given us a guide that is appropriate for advanced writers as well. Virtually every page has gems of wisdom or insights that will enhance the end result of scientific communication. This book may be especially helpful for those that are "stuck" in trying to get started writing or have complete "writers block". After reading and using this book, readers will likely be thankful that the authors have so adeptly conveyed their wisdom and vast experience in helping others to write with greater clarity and brevity.
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