Thursday, January 18, 2018

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“Improving Together: Better Science Writing Through Peer Learning”

August 8, 2016   Filed under Blog, Featured, Potpourri, Reviewing, Writing  

How do you motivate early-career researchers to improve their communication skills? Mathew Stiller-Reeve from the Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research in Bergen, Norway, and colleagues reveal how they were able to develop their writing and communication skills through the development of the ClimateSnack project, described in this journal article in Hydrology and Earth System Sciences. […]

Book review: Designing Science Presentations: A Visual Guide to Figures, Papers, Slides, Posters, and More

Here is another in my series of reviews for books that I read a while ago and were sitting on my desk waiting for the time to write the review. This review is of Matt Carter’s Designing Science Presentations: A Visual Guide to Figures, Papers, Slides, Posters, and More. Outside of my own book, I’ve […]

Responding to Reviewers: It’s the way you say it

August 3, 2015   Filed under Blog, Featured, Publishing, Reviewing, Writing  

Nature Methods has a few nice links over on their page about responding to criticism before and after publication. The way you say it The dos and don’ts of communicating with editors and reviewers Here are some of the choice quotes from the first link that I related to, from my experience as an author […]

How to respond to reviewers: When two reviewers say the same thing

October 31, 2014   Filed under Blog, Featured, Reviewing, Writing  

My coauthors and I were talking about the responses to the reviewers that we were writing for a paper that was in peer review. Because two of the reviewers raised issues about the same item, my coauthor wrote a thoughtful response to Reviewer #1, then, in response to Reviewer #2, said basically, “See our response […]

Scientific integrity matters! Fabricated peer reviewers lead to 60 retractions.

July 11, 2014   Filed under Blog, Featured, Publishing, Reviewing  

Thanks to The Week‘s report, I was alerted to the 60 retracted articles from the Journal of Vibration and Control. The explanation and list of retracted papers is here. More saucy details can be found here. Kudos to the Editor-in-Chief Ali H. Nayfeh and SAGE for carrying out the investigation and retracting the papers. This […]

How to give feedback to colleagues and students on their writing

May 12, 2014   Filed under Blog, Featured, Potpourri, Reviewing  

One of the perpetual difficulties with providing feedback to others is the tendency to coat the paper in red ink, leaving the author having to plow through all the comments. While not inherently bad in itself (I’m guilty as charged!), it can leave the author thinking that the 30 errors in punctuation exceed the one […]

Twenty tips for interpreting scientific claims

November 21, 2013   Filed under Blog, Featured, Resources, Reviewing, Writing  

This Comment in Nature today by William Sutherland, David Spiegelhalter, and Mark Burgman is meant as a primer for policy makers who need to interpret science, but I would argue that this primer is also useful for scientists who might fall into this trap of overinterpreting or misinterpreting results in their own or others’ studies. […]

How to read and understand a scientific paper

August 31, 2013   Filed under Blog, Featured, Reviewing, Writing  

Brian Curran sends along this great blog post about how to read and understand a scientific paper. The subtitle is a guide for nonscientists, but Brian points out that even scientists could benefit from this information. In fact, I would say that many of the questions asked by the author are valuable in constructing a […]

Should peer reviewers be suggested by authors?

July 10, 2013   Filed under Blog, Featured, Publishing, Reviewing  

A recent editorial by Mounir Fawzi in Middle East Current Psychiatry asks the above question. The paper concludes: Traditionally, peer reviewers are designated by the editor. However, a recent trend, which is followed by the MECPsych, is to give authors an opportunity to suggest reviewers for their manuscripts. A few studies have compared author-suggested reviewers […]

The Golden Rule of Reviewing, applied to grant proposals

June 9, 2013   Filed under Blog, Featured, Reviewing  

A colleague of mine wrote me a while back, I liked your blog entry on the golden rule of reviewing, but I wanted to see if you have thoughts (or know of similar research) regarding the review process for proposals to agencies. It comes to mind because I served on my first [funding agency] panel […]

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