Science Writing

Outline of the course:

1.  Overview:Types of articles, target audience, purpose and motivation of a writer,organization of an article (title, introduction, middle, end) sources of information, qualities of a good article, language (grammar, punctuation, terminology, qualities of discourse), aids (illustrations, tables, boxes, examples, references) Summary (descriptive, informative), scope and limitations of an article, editing, ethical responsibilities of a writer.

2.  Concept map technique: Learning to draw a cluster map and a concept map, exercise in making a concept map of a science article, concept map as an aid to organize one's knowledge, exercise in using it as preparation of writing an article

3.  Interview technique: Reporting an interview as a type of science article, structured /unstructured interviews, initial preparation, conduction of the interview, do's and don'ts, types of questions, questionnaires, qualities of good questions, responsibilities of an interviewer.

4.  Language: Discussion of good practices and practical exercises in grammar, punctuation, usage of words-phrases-sentences, links and style; effective use of terminology; discussion of qualities of discourse supported by examples (precision, clarity, forthrightness, conciseness, familiarity, fluidity)

5.  Writing practice:

    a.  Classroom exercises in unstructured and structured writing

    b.  Summary (up to 500 words)and critical appreciation (up to 500 words) of a
    science article of about 2000 words.

    c.  An original science article, 1500 words long (writing and rewriting after correction,     presentation before the class) References:

1.  Michael Alley, The Craft of Scientific Writing (3rd edition), Springer, N.Y. (1996)

2.  Kathleen M. Fisher, James H. Wandrsee and David E. Moody, Mapping Biology Knowledge, Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht (2000)

3.  Robert Gannon, Editor, Best Science Writing - Readings and Insights, Universities Press (Indian Edition), 1991.

4.Several articles in Scientific American, Science Reporter (India), Down to Earth (India), and many other popular science periodicals; also popular science articles in Indian newspapers (For example, Times of India, The Hindu)

Course Coordinator: