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Scientific Writing, HRP 214

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Title: Scientific Writing, HRP 214


1
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • Grand Finale Quiz

2
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. She eluded to the fight that occurred earlier.
  • B. She alluded to the the fight that occurred
    earlier.

3
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. She eluded to the fight that occurred earlier.
  • B. She alluded to the the fight that occurred
    earlier.

4
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. She eluded the fight.
  • B. She alluded the fight.

5
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. She eluded the fight.
  • B. She alluded the fight.

6
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. The close friendship that existed between
    them was quickly dissolved.
  • B. The close friendship that existed among them
    was quickly dissolved.

7
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. The close friendship that existed between
    them was quickly dissolved.
  • B. The close friendship that existed among them
    was quickly dissolved.

8
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She lies out in the sun.
  • B. She lays out in the sun.

9
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She lies out in the sun.
  • B. She lays out in the sun.

10
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She is lying out in the sun.
  • B. She is laying out in the sun.

11
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She is lying out in the sun.
  • B. She is laying out in the sun.

12
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She laid out in the sun yesterday.
  • B. She lay out in the sun yesterday.

13
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She laid out in the sun yesterday.
  • B. She lay out in the sun yesterday.

14
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She had laid out in the sun too much as a kid.
  • B. She had lain out in the sun too much as a kid.

15
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She had laid out in the sun too much as a kid.
  • B. She had lain out in the sun too much as a kid.

16
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She lies the book on the table.
  • B. She lays the book on the table.

17
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She lies the book on the table.
  • B. She lays the book on the table.

18
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She is lying the book on the table.
  • B. She is laying the book on the table.

19
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She is lying the book on the table.
  • B. She is laying the book on the table.

20
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She laid the book on the table this morning.
  • B. She lay the book on the table this morning.

21
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She laid the book on the table this morning.
  • B. She lay the book on the table this morning.

22
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She had lain the book on the table.
  • B. She had laid the book on the table.

23
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She had lain the book on the table.
  • B. She had laid the book on the table.

24
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. Now I lay down to sleep.
  • B. Now I lie down to sleep.

25
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. Now I lay down to sleep.
  • B. Now I lie down to sleep.

26
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. Now I lay me down to sleep.
  • B. Now I lie me down to sleep.

27
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. Now I lay me down to sleep.
  • B. Now I lie me down to sleep.

28
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She commented on the clearly defined mutant
    traits.
  • B. She commented on the clearly-defined mutant
    traits.

29
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She commented on the clearly defined mutant
    traits.
  • B. She commented on the clearly-defined mutant
    traits.

30
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. We studied the affects of the gene on
    signaling.
  • B. We studied the effects of the gene on
    signaling.

31
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. We studied the affects of the gene on
    signaling.
  • B. We studied the effects of the gene on
    signaling.

32
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. She was the best-read scientist in the lab.
  • B. She was the best read scientist in the lab.

33
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She was the best-read scientist in the lab.
  • B. She was the best read scientist in the lab.

34
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. The previously-reported data were suspect.
  • B. The previously reported data were suspect.

35
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. The previously-reported data were suspect.
  • B. The previously reported data were suspect.

36
Scientific Writing, HRP 214 Weekly Quiz
  • A. She was a well-known scientist.
  • B. She was a well known scientist.

37
Scientific Writing, HRP 214Weekly Quiz
  • A. She was a well-known scientist.
  • B. She was a well known scientist.

38
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He owed over 1000 to the doctor.
  • B. He owed more than 1000 to the doctor.

39
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He owed over 1000 to the doctor.
  • B. He owed more than 1000 to the doctor.

40
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The negotiators effected an agreement.
  • B. The negotiators affected an agreement.

41
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The negotiators effected an agreement.
  • B. The negotiators affected an agreement.

42
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. D-day was a historic day.
  • B. D-day was a historical day.

43
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. D-day was a historic day.
  • B. D-day was a historical day.
  • Actually both!

44
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Your procrastination had an averse effect on
    your grade.
  • B. Your procrastination had an adverse effect on
    your grade.

45
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Your procrastination had an averse effect on
    your grade.
  • B. Your procrastination had an adverse effect on
    your grade.

46
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The bacteria were treated gently.
  • B. The bacteria was treated gently.

47
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The bacteria were treated gently.
  • B. The bacteria was treated gently.

48
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Fewer men are in the class than women.
  • B. Less men are in the class than women.

49
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Fewer men are in the class than women.
  • B. Less men are in the class than women.

50
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Im averse to banana flavor.
  • B. Im adverse to banana flavor.

51
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Im averse to banana flavor.
  • B. Im adverse to banana flavor.

52
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That man and I were talking.
  • B. That man and me were talking.

53
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That man and I were talking.
  • B. That man and me were talking.

54
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She told Bob and me that the end was near.
  • B. She told Bob and I that the end was near.

55
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She told Bob and me that the end was near.
  • B. She told Bob and I that the end was near.

56
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. I always thought it was further to the moon.
  • B. I always thought it was farther to the moon.

57
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. I always thought it was further to the moon.
  • B. I always thought it was farther to the moon.

58
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That 17th-century pot is a historical piece.
  • B. That 17th-century pot is a historic piece.

59
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That 17th-century pot is a historical piece.
  • B. That 17th-century pot is a historic piece.

60
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Between you and I, we should have it done in
    no time.
  • B. Between you and me, we should have it done in
    no time.

61
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Between you and I, we should have it done in
    no time.
  • B. Between you and me, we should have it done in
    no time.

62
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He died of unknown causes.
  • B. He died from unknown causes.

63
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He died of unknown causes.
  • B. He died from unknown causes.

64
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Binge drinking causes adverse health effects.
  • B. Binge drinking causes averse health effects.

65
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Binge drinking causes adverse health effects.
  • B. Binge drinking causes averse health effects.

66
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. To whom did you betray my secret?
  • B. To who did you betray my secret?

67
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. To whom did you betray my secret?
  • B. To who did you betray my secret?

68
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The person about who you speak is a fool.
  • B. The person about whom you speak is a fool.

69
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The person about who you speak is a fool.
  • B. The person about whom you speak is a fool.

70
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Its my head on the line.
  • B. Its my head on the line.

71
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Its my head on the line.
  • B. Its my head on the line.

72
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The 20-pound weight loss helped his
    self-confidence.
  • B. The 20 pound weight loss helped his
    self-confidence.

73
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The 20-pound weight loss helped his
    self-confidence.
  • B. The 20 pound weight loss helped his
    self-confidence.

74
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Its head was on the chopping block.
  • B. Its head was on the chopping block.

75
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Its head was on the chopping block.
  • B. Its head was on the chopping block.

76
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The prevalence of autism is 10 out of 1,000
    people.
  • B. The incidence of autism is 10 out of 1,000
    people.

77
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The prevalence of autism is 10 out of 1,000
    people.
  • B. The incidence of autism is 10 out of 1,000
    people.

78
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She could have made it further in life.
  • B. She could have made it farther in life.

79
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She could have made it further in life.
  • B. She could have made it farther in life.

80
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She doesnt take compliments well.
  • B. She doesnt take complements well.

81
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She doesnt take compliments well.
  • B. She doesnt take complements well.

82
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Hes not rational at that time of the day.
  • B. Hes not rationale at that time of the day.

83
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Hes not rational at that time of the day.
  • B. Hes not rationale at that time of the day.

84
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Her rationale was that the drugs would help
    alleviate the pain.
  • B. Her rational was that the drugs would help
    alleviate the pain.

85
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Her rationale was that the drugs would help
    alleviate the pain.
  • B. Her rational was that the drugs would help
    alleviate the pain.

86
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Bob and I were very fond of the piece.
  • B. Bob and me were very fond of the piece.

87
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Bob and I were very fond of the piece.
  • B. Bob and me were very fond of the piece.

88
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That action violated her principles.
  • B. That action violated her principals.

89
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That action violated her principles.
  • B. That action violated her principals.

90
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Cream and chocolate comprise chocolate sauce.
  • B. Cream and chocolate compose chocolate sauce.

91
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Cream and chocolate comprise chocolate sauce.
  • B. Cream and chocolate compose chocolate sauce.

92
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The dessert was comprised of cream and
    chocolate.
  • B. The dessert was composed of cream and
    chocolate.

93
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The dessert was comprised of cream and
    chocolate.
  • B. The dessert was composed of cream and
    chocolate.

94
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Chocolate sauce composes cream and chocolate.
  • B. Chocolate sauce comprises cream and chocolate.

95
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Chocolate sauce composes cream and chocolate.
  • B. Chocolate sauce comprises cream and chocolate.

96
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Cream and chocolate are comprised in chocolate
    sauce.
  • B. Cream and chocolate are composed of
  • chocolate sauce.

97
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Cream and chocolate are comprised in chocolate
    sauce.
  • B. Cream and chocolate are composed of
  • chocolate sauce.

98
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She accepted the compliment without a word.
  • B. She accepted the complement without a word.

99
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She accepted the compliment without a word.
  • B. She accepted the complement without a word.

100
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. You should take some ice cream its
    complimentary.
  • B. You should take some ice cream its
    complementary.

101
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. You should take some ice cream its
    complimentary.
  • B. You should take some ice cream its
    complementary.

102
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Those colors are complementary.
  • B. Those colors are complimentary.

103
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Those colors are complementary.
  • B. Those colors are complimentary.

104
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Each person is responsible for their grade.
  • B. Each person is responsible for his grade.

105
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. Each person is responsible for their grade.
  • B. Each person is responsible for his grade.

106
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She commented on the clearly defined mutant
    traits.
  • B. She commented on the clearly-defined mutant
    traits.

107
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She commented on the clearly defined mutant
    traits.
  • B. She commented on the clearly-defined mutant
    traits.

108
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. I like books, chocolate, and coffee.
  • B. I like books, chocolate and coffee.

109
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. I like books, chocolate, and coffee.
  • B. I like books, chocolate and coffee.

110
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was self-employed.
  • B. She was self employed.

111
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was self-employed.
  • B. She was self employed.

112
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was the best-read scientist in the lab.
  • B. She was the best read scientist in the lab.

113
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was the best-read scientist in the lab.
  • B. She was the best read scientist in the lab.

114
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The previously-reported data were suspect.
  • B. The previously reported data were suspect.

115
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The previously-reported data were suspect.
  • B. The previously reported data were suspect.

116
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That was pre-SARS.
  • B. That was pre SARS.

117
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That was pre-SARS.
  • B. That was pre SARS.

118
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He cited the widely-believed fallacy.
  • B. He cited the widely believed fallacy.

119
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He cited the widely-believed fallacy.
  • B. He cited the widely believed fallacy.

120
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was a well-known scientist.
  • B. She was a well known scientist.

121
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was a well-known scientist.
  • B. She was a well known scientist.

122
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was well-known.
  • B. She was well known.

123
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was well-known.
  • B. She was well known.

124
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He counted six pies.
  • B. He counted 6 pies.

125
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He counted six pies.
  • B. He counted 6 pies.

126
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was affected by the war.
  • B. She was effected by the war.

127
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. She was affected by the war.
  • B. She was effected by the war.

128
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The affects of the war were devastating.
  • B. The effects of the war were devastating.

129
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The affects of the war were devastating.
  • B. The effects of the war were devastating.

130
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The bacteria that I was trying to grow died.
  • B. The bacteria which I was trying to grow died.

131
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The bacteria that I was trying to grow died.
  • B. The bacteria which I was trying to grow died.

132
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The car, which I didnt particularly like,
    finally died.
  • B. The car, that I didnt particularly like,
    finally died.

133
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The car, which I didnt particularly like,
    finally died.
  • B. The car, that I didnt particularly like,
    finally died.

134
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He displayed a distressing lack of effect.
  • B. He displayed a distressing lack of affect.

135
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. He displayed a distressing lack of effect.
  • B. He displayed a distressing lack of affect.

136
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The negotiators effected an agreement.
  • B. The negotiators affected an agreement.

137
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. The negotiators effected an agreement.
  • B. The negotiators affected an agreement.

138
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. ROC curves were developed in the 1950s as a
    by-product of research into making sense of radio
    signals contaminated by noise.
  • B. ROCs were developed in the 1950s as a
    by-product of research into making sense of radio
    signals contaminated by noise.

139
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • ROC curves were developed in the 1950s as a
    by-product of research into making sense of radio
    signals contaminated by noise.
  • B. ROCs were developed in the 1950s as a
    by-product of research into making sense of radio
    signals contaminated by noise.

140
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That strain of HIV virus is highly
    transmissible.
  • B. That strain of HIV is highly transmissible.

141
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • A. That strain of HIV virus is highly
    transmissible.
  • B. That strain of HIV is highly transmissible.

142
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • Two more to part on.

143
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • 1900s
  • The 1900s were from 1900 to1909 (just as the
    1990s were from 1990 to 1999)
  • Do you mean 1900 to 1999?
  • Use the twentieth century

144
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • 300 more
  • DOES NOT EQUAL
  • 300 as much
  • AND
  • Risk was three times greater than (x 3x)
  • DOES NOT HAVE THE SAME MEANING AS
  • Risk was three times as great as (3x)

145
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • George Orwell on clichés and other frivolities
  • Phrases like a not justifiable assumption,
    leaves much to be desired, would serve no good
    purpose, a consideration which we should do well
    to bear in mind, are a continuous temptation, a
    packet of aspirins always at one's elbow.

146
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • Blaise Pascal on the elegance in brevity
  • I have only made this letter rather long because
    I have not had time to make it shorter. (Je
    n'ai fait celle-ci plus longue que parceque je
    n'ai pas eu le loisir de la faire plus courte.)
  • --Lettres provinciales, 16, Dec.14,1656
  • (though reference also attributed to St.
    Augustine, and Cicero.)

147
HRP 214 Scientific Writing
  • Lecture 9
  • Post-publication
  • Working with the media
  • Peer review

148
The Media
  • Dealing with the media.
  • Points for discussion.
  • 1. Where do journalists get ideas for stories?
  • From scientific journals and meetings (science
    journalists)
  • From online collections, such as
    Eurekalert(www.eurekalert.org)
  • From each other
  • From your institutions press releases (prepared
    by PIO officers)
  • From following trends

149
The Media
  • 2. Being interviewed by a journalist.
  • Points to keep in mind
  • 1. Assume that you are being recorded.
  • 2. Pretend that you are talking to your
    grandmother.
  • 3. Avoid jargon altogether.
  • 4. Try to tell it like a story.
  • 5. Always start with the big picture.
  • 6. Unless you are being interviewed by a PIO
    officer or sympathetic intern, you will NOT be
    given an opportunity to approve the article ahead
    of time. At most, you may be able to ask to see
    your direct quotes ahead of time.

150
Scientific Writing, HRP 214
  • Be aware of what journalists are looking for.
  • News stories follows a basic formula (just as
    scientific journal articles do)
  • Headline
  • Lead
  • Nut Graf
  • First quote (3-6 paragraphs down)brings in the
    human element and overall significance
  • More details and more quotes (inverted pyramid
    style)
  • Kicker (often a strong quote)

151
The Media
  • 2. Being interviewed by a journalist.
  • What the journalist is waiting to hear, and
    will use in his/her article
  • big picture ties
  • how your research affects people (i.e., their
    readers)
  • whats different or new about your results (the
    news hook)
  • colorful prose (makes a good kicker)
  • interesting stories (anecdotes) (makes a good
    lead)
  • paradox/irony/surprise (also makes a good lead)
  • people-focused stories
  • historical facts/the development of the idea
  • sweeping comments about the significance of the
    work (makes a good first quote)
  • controversy/criticism or laudatory praise, if
    you are being asked to comment on a peers
    research

152
The Media
  • What journalists do not want to hear and will
    not quote you on
  • experimental details (unless they need specific
    clarifications, which they will ask for
    directly)
  • statistical details
  • nuances, subtleties
  • jargon

153
The Media
  • 3. Explaining risk to a journalist.
  • Be careful what you say.
  • Assume that the journalist does not have a good
    concept of risk, probability, and statistics.
  • Remember that the journalist is looking for
    significance, surprise, and news that affects
    people therefore, they may seize upon a fact or
    figure that is shocking, surprising, or alarming
    if you give them the opportunity.
  • Relative risk can be high even if absolute risk
    is low
  • The risk to public health can be high even if the
    risk to individual health is low.

154
Describing Risk
  • Example the womens health initiative
  • Relative risk for invasive breast cancer 1.26
  • Relative risk for coronary heart disease 1.29
  • Best translation for the public?
  • Women have a 26 increased risk of breast cancer
    and a 29 increased risk of heart disease if they
    take hormones?

155
Baseline risks and percentages
  • Risk of invasive breast cancer
  • 37/10,000 person-years for treatment .0037
  • 30/10,000 person-years for controls .0030
  • ?Absolute risk increases by .07
  • Risk of heart disease
  • 38/10,000 person-years for treatment .0038
  • 30/10,000 person-years for controls .0030
  • ?Absolute risk increases by .08

156
Baseline risks and percentages
  • 26 increased risk of breast cancer and 29
    increased risk of heart disease sounds impressive
    and scary.
  • Better to report
  • 8 more CHD events per 10,000 women/year
  • 7 more invasive breast cancers 10,000 women/year

157
Peer Review
  • If you are the reviewer, a few tips

158
Peer Review Tone
  • Assume there is some poor graduate student on the
    other end who did all the work, and whose
    confidence and career depend on your critique.
  • Tone matters!
  • E.g. The authors should delete table 5 not only
    is it completely irrelevant, but it also reveals
    their utter lack of statistical understanding.
  • vs. Table 5 contains unnecessary information
    (for example), and a Pearsons correlation
    coefficient may not be appropriate here. The
    authors should consider revising or omitting the
    table.

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Peer Review Tone
  • Avoid criticizing the authors! Criticize the
    work.
  • Avoid generalizations point out specific errors.
  • Use positive instead of negative language where
    possible The paper is poorly written. vs. The
    writing and presentation could be improved. For
    example
  • Avoid lecturing to the authors.

160
Peer Review Process
  • My system..
  • 1. Scan the abstract.
  • 2. Jump to the data review the tables and
    figures first.
  • Draw your own conclusions.
  • Do the tables and figures stand on their own?
  • Are there any obvious statistical errors?
  • Is there repetitive information?
  • 3. Read the paper once through.
  • Do the authors conclusions match their data?
  • Is the paper clearly written, or did you struggle
    to get through it? You should not have to
    struggle!
  • Is the length of the paper justified given the
    amount of new information that the data provide?

161
Peer Review Process
  • 4. Read the introduction carefully.
  • Is it three paragraphs long (or close)? Does it
    roughly follow known--gtunknown--gtresearch
    question/hypothesis?
  • Is there detailed information about what was done
    that belongs in the methods?
  • Is there information about what was found? If so,
    it should be moved to the results.
  • Is there distracting information about previous
    studies or mechanisms that are not directly
    relevant to the hypothesis being tested. If so,
    it should be moved to the discussion.
  • Do the authors tell you what gaps in the
    literature they are trying to fill in?

162
Peer Review Process
  • 5. Read the methods carefully.
  • Scan this section to find answers to your
    questions about the data.
  • Were things measured objectively or subjectively?
    What instruments were used?
  • Are there flaws in the study design, such as no
    control group?
  • Read the statistics section carefully.
  • 6. Read the results carefully.
  • Read this section with the tables and figures in
    front of you.
  • Does each section roughly correspond to one table
    or figure?
  • Do the authors summarize the main trends and
    themes from the table, or do they just repeat
    what is in the tables?
  • If there are graphs, do the authors give precise
    numerical values in the text if it is not given
    in the graph?
  • Are the authors honest or do they try to draw
    your eye to what they want you to see??
  • Do the authors over-interpret statistical
    significance, by ignoring the fact that the
    magnitude is small or by ignoring the fact that
    they have done multiple subgroup analyses?
  • Is this section unnecessarily long?

163
Peer Review Process
  • 7. Look at each table and figure.
  • Did the authors choose the correct statistics?
  • Is there repetitive information in a single
    table, such as both p-values and standard errors?
  • Are there multiple tables or figures that tell
    the same story? For example, Table 2 gives
    parameter estimates from a logistic regression
    model and Table 3 gives odds ratios from the same
    model and Figure 1 plots the odds ratio
    confidence intervals. Or Table 1 gives the mean
    values for two groups and indicates statistical
    significance from a ttest and Table 2 gives
    confidence intervals for the differences in means
    for the same data.
  • Did the authors adjust for confounding and
    consider interactions?
  • Is there evidence of data dredging or
    purposefully omitting data?
  • Are any graphs misleading, e.g. through
    manipulation of area or axes?
  • Is the treatment group always compared with a
    proper control/placebo group?
  • Are there inconsistencies in the data they
    present from one table to the next?
  • Did the authors make transcribing errors when
    going from the data in tables/results to the
    abstract?

164
Peer Review Process
  • 8. Read the discussion carefully.
  • Does the first paragraph succinctly and clearly
    tell you what was found and what is new?
  • Are the authors conclusions justified or are
    they overreaching?
  • Do they clearly distinguish hypothesis-driven
    conclusions and exploratory conclusions?
  • Is the writing clear and to the point (active
    voice!)? Is there some sense of order and
    structure or are they just rambling on aimlessly?
  • Could the discussion be shortened?
  • Did they address the limitations you care about?
    (as opposed to any old irrelevant limitations
    that they threw in just to have some)
  • Are the references that they cite current?
  • Have they omitted key references?

165
Peer Review Content
  • Comments to authors
  • 1. Start with a one-paragraph general overview.
  • State what you think is the major finding and
    importance of the work
  • Give 2-3 positive, encouraging statements about
    the work. If the methods are crap, is the writing
    nice, for example? Is the research question
    particularly interesting or novel? (E.g., This
    is an interesting manuscript, with several
    strengths. The authors should be commended for
    The finding that . is important.)
  • State 1-2 major limitations (if there are any) to
    the study design, writing/presentation, or
    conclusions. (E.g., The study is limited because
    there is no control group. The overall writing
    or presentation needs improvement. The authors
    may have over-stated their findings. The paper
    provides only weak evidence for its conclusions.
    The study is exploratory, not hypothesis-driven.
    )
  • Do not tell the authors your overall
    recommendation (rejection, acceptance).

166
Peer Review Content
  • Comments to authors
  • 2. In a numbered list, give 5-15 specific
    criticisms/suggestions for revision. The number
    will often correspond to your recommendation
    (give the most if you are recommending
    opportunity for revision.)
  • Point out specific mistakes.
  • List the issues that you found in your review.
  • Give specific recommendations for revision.

167
Peer Review Content
  • Comments to editors
  • 1. Fill out journal grading sheet.
  • 2. Choose your recommendation
  • Reject (33)
  • Reject with opportunity to revise. (33)
  • Accept with minor revision (33)
  • Accept.
  • 3. Give a succinct overall statement to the
    editors that justifies your ranking. State the
    papers major strengths and weakness. (I often
    borrow material from my comments to the authors.)

168
  • REVIEWER ? EDITOR!!!
  • Do not be spend your time nit-picking. Focus on
    big-picture issues.
  • If the manuscript has a lot of copy-editing
    errors, point this out in a general way and give
    one or two examples, e.g. The manuscript
    contains typos, such as

169
Peer Review grading sheet, example
  • Impact of ResearchTOP 10    __TOP 25  
     __Top 50    __Bottom 50 _X_Bottom 25
    __Bottom 10 __Originality of
    ResultsMethodology and Data QualityOVERALL
    MANUSCRIPT RANK

170
Peer Review Final comments
  • The first one you do will take a long time. You
    will get progressively faster at these as you go
    along.
  • Review unto others as you would want to be
    reviewed!
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