Friday, May 22, 2015

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New resource for teaching students how to find, read, and use the literature

April 15, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Resources, Writing  

The UK Higher Education Academy just published our second report in the series How to Succeed at University in GEES Disciplines: Enhancing your Information Literacy Skills. (GEES is Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences.) I wrote this with coauthor Rich Waller at Keele University. Contents include finding and assessing scientific literature, critical reading, citing sources and […]

The Importance of Thinking Before Writing

March 21, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Publishing, Writing  

I was helping a student with a paper he was writing. He said a lot of interesting things, just not being very effective at what he was trying to convey. Here was my advice to him. If you can write down 1–3 bulleted sentences that convey your principal results or points that you want to […]

Plagiarism and Self-Plagiarism Policy

March 5, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Publishing  

Recently, I had the opportunity to help develop a policy for plagiarism and self-plagiarism for the journals of the American Meteorological Society. That policy was published in the February 2015 issues of the various journals. Although the policy for plagiarism was perhaps not too surprising, the policy on self-plagiarism is, as far as I can […]

Is the university seminar dying?

March 5, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Presentations  

When I reminisce about the educational experiences that most prepared me for a career in academia, attending the weekly seminar series was one of the more important influences. I had the opportunity to be exposed to such seminars at a number of different universities and research laboratories throughout my career, and they served similar purposes. […]

Cleveland Abbe’s “The Teacher and the Student” (1909)

February 8, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Potpourri  

This short essay was published in Monthly Weather Review in January 1909, as part of the Summary of 1908 (p. 453). The text is copied verbatim, including what we would now recognize as non-gender-neutral language and grammatical errors. THE TEACHER AND THE STUDENT The good work that is done in meteorology is often accomplished by […]

Godwin’s Law for Emails to Journal Editors

January 30, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Publishing  

“…there is a tradition in many newsgroups and other Internet discussion forums that once such a comparison is made, the thread is finished and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever debate was in progress.” – Wikipedia entry for Godwin’s Law I am proposing a corollary: Godwin’s Law for Emails to Journal Editors. If […]

Advice to writers: Treat it like teaching

January 30, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing  

While helping a student write a particularly challenging chapter in his dissertation, it occurred to me that one piece of advice that may help him is to treat his writing like teaching. Imagine, if instead of communicating your science through a written report, you had to teach your ideas to students who had not seen […]

Why you need to read your page proofs carefully…

January 15, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Humor, Writing  

From http://www.theguardian.com/science/grrlscientist/2014/nov/12/scientific-schadenfreude:

Damn the tildes and full speed ahead!

December 16, 2014   Filed under Blog, Featured, Writing  

Reader Matt Bunkers raised the issue of the tilde (~) in scientific writing. Some use it for “proportional to”. Others use it for “order of magnitude”. Still others use it for “approximately”. Given the wide variety of uses for the tilde, why not just write out what you mean? Doing so will make your writing […]

Announcing: Publiscize

December 16, 2014   Filed under Blog, Featured, Potpourri  

Calling All Scientists! From Dr. Robert Seigel: In my “spare” time, I have been working on an exciting project that can revolutionize our science communication. I am starting a new initiative called Publiscize (www.publiscize.com) and its purpose is to increase scientists’ research visibility, encourage cross-field collaboration, educate the public, and showcase university departments, schools, and […]

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