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ENGL 99 - Ogo: How to Read a Scientific Journal Article

The Sections of a Paper Written in Scientific Journal Style and Format (click on hotlinks for more information)

Most journal-style scientific papers are subdivided into the following sections: Title, Authors and Affiliation, Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, Acknowledgments, and Literature Cited, which parallel the experimental process. This is the system we will use. This website describes the style, content, and format associated with each section.

The sections appear in a journal style paper in the following prescribed order:

Experimental Process                                                                        Section of Paper 

What did I do in a nutshell?                                                                       Abstract

What is the problem?                                                                                                         Introduction

How did I solve the problem?                                                                    Materials and Methods

What did I find out?                                                                                     Results

What does it mean?                                                                                    Discussion

Who helped me out?                                                                                   Acknowledgments (optional)

Whose work did I refer to?                                                                          Literature Cited

Extra information                                                                                         Appendices (optional)


Adapted from

Bates College.  Department of Biology.  (2009).  How to write a paper in scientific journal style and format.  Retrieved October 19, 2009, from Department Web site http://abacus.bates.edu/~ganderso/biology/resources/writing/HTWsections.html