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    Top Ten style checks for PhDs or creative non-fiction writers

Top Ten style checks for PhDs or creative non-fiction writers

Style issues for writing creative non-fiction at a research level are rather different from the rules or guidance for fiction writers. As in many professional tasks, having a basic checklist can often help you develop your own practice. Here are some possible kernel questions that may help.

How many words are there in your paragraphs? — Aim for around 150 […]

Fair comment in academia

Rapoport’s Rules for critically handling literature and reviewing articles.

Anatole (or Anatol) Rapoport was a mathematical psychologist. Image: AZ Quotes.
One of the hardest things to get right in academic contexts is how to comment fairly on other people’s work. On the one hand, scientific and academic work legitimately demands that we should criticise what seems erroneous, perhaps especially if something is […]

Storyboarding research

How to do smarter, proactive planning-and-realisation of projects, reports and articles, from the outset.

Oscar-winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black storyboards his research before writing down the first draft.
Almost everyone doing research makes a plan before getting started – because we all know that research is time consuming, often expensive and hard to predict. Nowadays too this is often accompanied by some […]

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    How to write paragraphs in research texts (articles, books and PhDs)

How to write paragraphs in research texts (articles, books and PhDs)

Paragraphs are a unit of thought: the sequence to follow is Topic, Body, Tokens, Wrap. 

Image credit: CC0 Public Domain.
In English the core building blocks of any intellectual or research argument are paragraphs. Each paragraphs should be a single unit of thought, a discrete package of ideas composed of closely linked sentences. The most generally applicable sequence to follow is — Topic, […]