"How to Write a Scientific Paper - DOC"
How to Write a Scientific Paper The purpose of a scientific paper is to present original research to the scientific community. A good scientific paper should: Give background information so that the reader can understand what you are working on. Explain why the research is important. What questions are being asked and addressed by the experiments performed. Describe how the research was done, so that the reader could replicate the experiments if desired. Present the data obtained. Explain the data. Describe how the data answered the questions asked at the beginning of the paper. Science only works because other members of the scientific community critically evaluate all published results. Once a paper is published, other scientists have the chance to criticize the work. If someone thinks the conclusions or results of a paper are incorrect, they can redo the experiments, or redesign the experiments. By doing so they may be able to show that the conclusions of the original paper were incorrect. This is why science is always changing, since additional research constantly modifies previous conclusions. You will use the results from your drug resistance experiments to create a scientific paper. The items in the bulleted list above are typically organized into four sections as follows: Introduction In this first section of the paper you should give the background information your reader will need to understand your research. This section should include a brief summary of drug resistance in bacteria. You can use information from your textbook and the online articles to write this section. The introduction should also include an explanation of why this experiment was done. How will this experiment add to the study of drug resistance in bacteria? Material and Methods This section should give a detailed description of how the experiment was performed. A reader should be able to duplicate your experiment from the information in this section. This description should be written in the past tense, and in the first person. For example, you could write: “We added 5ml of liquid media without antibiotic to a 15 ml plastic tube.” Try to organize this section so that it is not one long continuous paragraph of “We did this” and “We did that.” Feel free to use headings and subsections to break up the procedure. Results It is in this section that you present your data. There are generally three ways to present data 1. In written form 2. In a table 3. In a graph Qualitative observations can be given in written form. Do not discuss the importance of your data in this section. Save that discussion for the next section. Discussion In this final section of the paper you should explain the important conclusions that you have drawn from your data. What do your data tell you, and why is this important? If the experiment worked the way you expected, explain how it helped answer the questions you stated at the beginning of the paper. If the experiment did not produce the results you were expecting, try to explain why. What might have gone wrong? What would you do differently next time if you were to rerun the experiment? References This section includes the source information used in the background or elsewhere in the paper. Use APA or similar formats. Be sure to cite at least 2 to three sources for the paper. Citations are generally needed where the information is not common knowledge. The entire paper should be typewritten and double-spaced. Be sure to include a title.