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301282 VO Essential scientific writing (2019S)

3.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 30 - Biologie



Language: English

Examination dates



SR 1/BZB, Dr.Bohrgase 9,/6.Stock 1030 Wien.
Vorbesprechung: 15.3.2019, 15.00 Uhr
Termine: jeweils 9.00 - 10.30 Uhr
30.4; 06.5; 07.5; 13.5; 14.5; 17.5; 20.5; 21.5; 24.5; 27.5; 28.5.


Aims, contents and method of the course

Modern science requires young scientists to have efficient communication skills; yet, only a few programs offer formal training in scientific writing and presentation. This lack of training leads to awkward project reports and theses, poor grades, failed fellowship applications and rejected manuscripts. The proposed course aims to improve students’ competence in scientific writing. The topics covered include: structure of a scientific argument, elements of scientific manuscripts and their function, storyline development, planning, drafting and revision, English usage, introduction to publishing process, scientific illustrations and essential presentation skills. The course will help students learn and apply the principles of efficient communication to writing project reports, Master- and PhD theses, project proposals and fellowship applications as well as provide practical tips for everyday writing and presentation tasks (writing protocols, lab notes, emails, preparing group meetings, journal clubs, etc). These skills are practiced through lectures, reading additional course materials, open discussions and simple, low-stake writing assignments.
The course is primarily aimed at students in the area of basic biomedical research (biochemistry, molecular cell biology, structural biology, biophysics and the like), though the students of other natural sciences are welcome to attend.

Assessment and permitted materials

Written exam (in English). English grammar not graded. Completion of >75% of writing assignments on the Moodle BEFORE the 1st exam date boosts the final grade by 1 point (e.g., from "2" from the exam grade to a final "1" grade).

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

1 (sehr gut): 84-100%
2 (gut): 75-83%
3 (befriedigend): 64-74%
4 (genügend): 51-63%
5 (nicht genügend): 0-50%

Examination topics

The nature of scientific problems
Structure of a scientific argument
Elements of research manuscripts and their functions
Planning, drafting and editing
Publishing and editorial process
Scientific illustrations
Scientific presentations
Project proposals

Reading list

All literature below and mentioned on the course Moodle pages is OPTIONAL:

* Writing Science: How To Write Papers That Get Cited and Proposals That Get Funded by Joshua Schimel (2012) Oxford University Press; ISBN 978-019976024-4
* The Craft of Research by Wayne C. Booth, Gregory G. Colomb and Joseph M. Williams, 3rd ed. (2008) university of Chicago Press; ISBN 978-022606566-3
* Essentials of Writing Biomedical Research Papers by Mimi Zeiger (2000) McGraw-Hill Education; ISBN 978-007134544-6

Association in the course directory


Last modified: Tu 17.12.2019 13:48