Basically, the text of a scientific paper should have a number of characteristics that have become established in academic research, in addition to self-evident principles such as the avoidance of spelling and grammatical errors. Thus, the general style of the work should be kept objective and factual and, accordingly, avoid personal opinion, moral judgments, humor, irony, etc. The most important things include:
No first person
Another basic rule is to avoid the so-called first person form or the personal pronouns “I”, “we” and “one”. Instead, mostly passive sentence constructs are used and thus the focus is on the content of the text instead of its author. Furthermore, avoid addressing the reader directly in a formulation.
In academic practice, scientific papers are mostly written in the present tense. Since another principle of academic writing involves consistency of language, it is therefore always advisable to use the present tense when in doubt. There are, however, a few exceptions, such as explicit references to events in the past or individual parts of the paper such as the preface, reflection, and acknowledgments, in which the past tense and perfect or past perfect may also be used.
It is advisable not to use convoluted sentence constructions, but instead to use short concise sentences. This also helps to maintain a comprehensible writing style and thus to ensure an orderly text structure with a logical train of thought (“red thread”). Care should be taken to use precise language with appropriate technical terms, whereby technical terms should be introduced and defined. Thus word repetitions are also not necessarily a bad writing style, as long as thereby correct technical terms are used. The noted “precise language” includes in particular the imperative not to use imprecise or “fuzzy” words such as “approximately”, “sometimes”, etc.
Sound source base
Since scientific work is usually based on research results of other authors, this must be made clear at the appropriate places. For this purpose, a reference is made in the text with the help of a footnote and a corresponding entry in the bibliography. If you do not clearly mark references to other works in your text, this is plagiarism, which can have consequences up to the failure of your own work. To prevent this from happening, you will learn more about correct citation in the next article.
Correct citation, a particularly important part of scientific writing
Besides the formalities that you have to take into account when writing a scientific paper, there is one aspect that is particularly important and often takes up a lot of time: correct citation. But since it can often be the deciding factor for a good grade or even lead to a failing grade (if you don’t cite sources), it is worth taking a closer look at the specifics of citation or giving it away to be done by someone else. Read the recent paperhelp review and some others that might draw your attention, and consider ordering it. However, if you’re willing to write it all by yourself, for this purpose, we have listed the most important citation methods with various examples in the next chapter.