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Resources for Writing in the Disciplines

The resources in this section address a range of writing issues, from general concerns across disciplines to specific and concrete concerns of individual disciplines. You will find writing samples from many campus graduate programs along with guidance for writing specific types of texts such as literature reviews. 

If you have feedback or would like to add resources to this section, please contact Dr. Linda Macri, Director of the Office of Writing Initiatives.

Note: The Graduate School provides these resources as an aid to graduate students, but does not endorse any product or service featured on third-party websites. The materials on this site do not supersede the writing requirements of individual programs. The institutions and authors creditied hold all applicable copyrights to the work featured. This material cannot be reproduced without the author's permission.

Arts and Humanities Resources // Social Sciences Resources // Science and Engineering Resources

Arts and Humanities Resources

Writing about Books, Music, Film, and History

Writing in the Humanities and Arts
http://gsrc.ucla.edu/gwc/resources/writing-in-the-humanities-and-arts.html#introductionstowritinginthehum 
This annotated bibliography surveys texts about writing in the Humanities.

Conquering the Humanities Conference

Presenting Conference Papers in the Humanities
http://www.cgu.edu/pages/864.asp 
Claremont Graduate University Writing Center
This nicely laid-out article covers the abstract submission stage through the actual presentation, providing tips for maintaining depth of subject matter without sacrificing clarity.

From Making a Case to Making a Case Analysis

Writing in Specific Fields
http://www.cgu.edu/pages/794.asp 
The Claremont Graduate University Writing Center offers a series of articles highlighting the main themes and structures of writing in humanities and social science disciplines.

Social Sciences Resources

Research Funding Advice from the Source

On the Art of Writing Proposals
http://www.ssrc.org/workspace/images/crm/new_publication_3/%7B7a9cb4f4-815f-de11-bd80-001cc477ec70%7D.pdf 
This Social Science Research Council guide covers the absolute “musts” for a social science proposal and offers tips on creating a document that will set your research apart.

Read This Before You Submit

Checklist for Manuscript Submission (APA)
http://cirt.gcu.edu/documents/researchlibrary~2/checklistformanuscriptsubmissiondocx 
Grand Canyon University, Center for Innovation in Research and Teaching
Consult this checklist before submitting an APA style article or manuscript. The short document covers APA formatting guidelines from references to margins.

Poster Bored No More!

Developing Poster Presentations in the Social Sciences
http://writingcenter.gmu.edu/resources-template.php?id=52 
George Mason University Writing Center
This PowerPoint from the George Mason University Writing Center iguidessocial science students through the basics of constructing a poster presentation, including presenting in-depth data while maintaining visual clarity.

From Making a Case to Making a Case Analysis

Writing in Specific Fields
http://www.cgu.edu/pages/794.asp 
The Claremont Graduate University Writing Center offers a series of articles highlighting the main themes and structures of writing in humanities and social science disciplines.

Coding Decoded

Atlas.ti
http://www.atlasti.com/ 
Some students have found this software helpful for coding qualitative data. Costing approximately $99, it includes unlimited colored and filtered codes as well as multitasking capabilities for storing and coding data.

Say Goodbye to the Pedal

HyperTranscribe
http://www.researchware.com/products/hypertranscribe.html 
Some researchers use this software to transcribe interviews more efficiently. Costing approximately $79, it allows the interviewer to transcribe, listen to audio, and control audio via shortcut keys all within the same window.

Translating Data

Data Analysis and Evaluation
http://cirt.gcu.edu/teaching/resources/sswriting/analysisevaluation 
Grand Canyon University, Center for Innovation in Research and Teaching
Grand Canyon University, Center for Innovation in Research and Teaching This guide illustrates language and structure that turn research data into clear and engaging prose. The article also provides examples of effective as well as ineffective phrasing.

Science and Engineering Resources

Grant Advice from the Source

Grant Proposal Guide (Format)
http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/gpg/nsf04_23/2.jsp 
The National Science Foundation provides instructions for crafting an NSF Grant proposal. In addition to helping with grant proposals, the article will help scientists and engineers to use the NSF Grant format for other academic documents, such as the dissertation proposal.

Even More Grant Advice from the Source

A Guide for Proposal Writing
http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2004/nsf04016/start.htm 
The National Science Foundation provides these longer-form instructions for crafting an NSF Grant proposal. The guide walks readers through stages from initial structuring to submission.

NSF Proposals that Work

Advice on Writing: Proposals to the NSF
http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~sfinger/advice/advice.html 
This accessible article helps writers craft a winning NSF proposal. Shorter than the NSF guide, it is more advisory than instructional.

Why We Write

The Science of Scientific Writing
http://www.americanscientist.org/issues/feature/the-science-of-scientific-writing/1 
This article from American Scientist provides an overview of the philosophy that drives scientific writing. It reminds writers that the primary goals are clarity and attention to audience.

Voice Lessons

Writing Guide: Scientific Writing
http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/processes/science/ 
Colorado State University Writing Studio
These basic articles review the importance of developing the "scientific voice" in your writing and break down scientific papers into such components as the methods and results sections.

Engineering Reports (and How Not to Engineer Them)

Writing Engineering Reports
http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/647/01/ 
The Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL) provides many documents and services, including this comprehensive guide to writing reports in the engineering fields. It overs all the basics, from notes on content and design to examples of how not to write reports.

Building Presentations, Building Confidence

Advice to Beginning Physics Speakers
http://www.physics.ohio-state.edu/~kagan/phy596/Presentations/AdviceToBeginningPhysicsSpeakers.pdf 
This article provides advice on conference presentations specifically for researchers in the hard sciences and is especially helpful for scientists struggling with shyness or a lack of public speaking experience.

Your LaTeX Home Base

LaTeX
http://www.latex-project.org/intro.html 
This site serves as a kind of LaTeX home base, providing instructions on how to install LaTeX, troubleshooting resources, and news forums.

The Three Faces of LaTeX

LaTeX Style Guide
http://www.acm.org/publications/latex_style/ 
Association for Computing Machinery
These .zip files are designed to help you put documents into three common LaTeX formats. The site also includes a list of journals and transactions compatible with each format.

LaTeX made (a little) Easier

TeXnicCenter
http://www.texniccenter.org/ 
This free download allowing you to produce LaTeX documents in a more user-friendly interface. The site also provides thorough instructions on how to operate TeXnicCenter.

LaTeX made (a little) Easier II

WinEdit
http://www.winedt.com/ 
WinEdit is a free shareware program that allows users to work within the LaTex format while inputting work in a more user-friendly interface.

LaTeX made (a little) Easier III

Scientific Word
http://www.mackichan.com/index.html?products/sw.html~mainFrame 
Some students find this software to be a helpful resource for writing documents in LaTeX format. Costing $180, the software allows you to create LaTeX documents in an interface that mirrors the style of programs such as MS Word

Capturing Your Sources in BibTeX

BibTeX Resources
www.bibtex.org 
Alexander Feder’s tutorial site will walk you through how to use BibTeX, the tool that organizes references for LaTeX formatted documents. The site also includes links to tools that can convert your BibTeX bibliographies into different formats.

Capturing Your Sources in BibTeX II 

Instructions for Using BibTeX with LaTeX Documents
http://ireap.umd.edu/sites/default/files/documents/theses/bibtex-instructions.pdf
Dorothea Francis Ann Brosius (Institute for Research in Electronics and Applied Physics at UMD) provides a succinct guide to using BibTeX for writers keeping track of references in LaTeX.