scientific writing need to be clear and precise

Why does your scientific writing need to be clear and precise?

Scientific writing is not just something used to talk about science, but a form of technical writing that experts and scientists use to explain and communicate their research to the world. A good piece of scientific writing should maintain the same clarity and precision of that used in research work. In communication between the author and the audience, scientific writing demands precision- a precise use of words and phrases, and most important clarity. 

All the above three criteria are crucial because of the highly technical terms and phrases used by the author to represent his/her work especially to an audience with very less or no knowledge on the subject. It must be acknowledged that sometimes the audience might be from a different discipline and may not be a native speaker of the language used in the writing. 

Due to the vast number of audiences which a journal attracts, it is important to keep the work as precise as possible which helps in preventing any mistranslations and misunderstandings. It is also essential to portray communicating figures, and facts used in research as well as the description of results, precise and exact. 

What does it mean to be clear and precise in scientific writing?

A key to any writing is to focus on words and punctuation. Subtle differences in the word choice or correct use of punctuation can significantly elevate ones writing. 

An organization of writing is crucial. The paper should be telling a story, making it logical, with specific rules going into each section. In academic wiring, your work needs to be unambiguous and accurate. Though not as simple as it sounds, 

it will help in making it more readable to the audience. Writing precisely requires careful thinking and editing. If a person has to work too hard to comprehend what he reads, then a problem persists in the authors writing skills. 

Remember you’re not trying to impress, you’re are writing to communicate

If you want your work to be read, you as an author should do most of the work for the audience, and a key important part of this is implementing a flow in your writing. 

What strategies to use in scientific writing?

When writing your piece, you should be clear in the information you are providing. The key to any great writing is its structure. For example, if you are covering three different topics in a paragraph and don’t give a coherence, then the reader will not be able to comprehend and find it hard to read. 

Another crucial guideline to achieve flow is to always provide ample information to your audience so that each sentence is lucid. Every sentence provided by you as an author should comprehend each other. This can be achieved by providing information or referring to the previous sentence before introducing new information. Below are some pointers:

  • Using effective transitions between paragraphs, sections, and within sentences when applicable.
  • Writers are recommended to start their sentences using strong verbs and nouns, and not use weak phrases. 
  • Always strive to have clarity in your writing, try to make the unspoken spoke. Just because a sentence or piece of information is comprehensible by you as a writer doesn’t mean your audience is on the same wavelength as you are. 

There is always a point of exhaustion an author reaches. At times like this, try to take the break you need, step away from your writing and have a look at it again from a fresh perspective. This will not only help you rectify your mistakes but also helps you view your work from a reader’s point of view. 

Why is it so important to maintain a standard in scientific writings?

In the field of science, good writing skills is not a luxury, but a much-needed skill. It is fundamental to spread knowledge, but also for creating knowledge among the audience. During the writing process as an author, we are forced to keep things precise and simple. It is by our writing that we bridge the gap with respect to the lack of clarity or information. According to the great philosopher Artur Schopenhauer

“Unclear writing is an indication of unclear thinking”

If an author cannot concisely, clearly, and logically represent his collected and analyzed data, it doesn’t matter even if its groundbreaking discovery, the reader will not be able to understand and question your results. So it should be really stressed that the clearer authors explain their work, the better understood by more number of people.