Scientific literature

Scientific literature including scholarly publications that report the empirical and theoretical work in the natural and social sciences , and within an academic field, often abbreviated as the literature . Academic publishing is the process of contributing the results of one’s research into the literature, which often requires a peer-review process. Original scientific research published for the first time in scientific journals s’intitule the primary literature . Patents and technical reports , For minor research results and engineering and design work (including computer software), can also be considered primary literature. Secondary sources include articles (which summarize the findings of published studies to highlight advances and new lines of research) and books (for large projects or compilations of articles). Tertiary sources could include encyclopedias and similar works intended for broad public consumption. Secondary sources include articles (which summarize the findings of published studies to highlight advances and new lines of research) and books (for large projects or compilations of articles). Tertiary sourcescould include encyclopedias and similar works intended for broad public consumption. Secondary sources include articles (which summarize the findings of published studies to highlight advances and new lines of research) and books (for large projects or compilations of articles). Tertiary sources could include encyclopedias and similar works intended for broad public consumption.

Types of scientific publications

Scientific literature can include the following kinds of publications:

  • Scientific articles published in scientific journals
  • obvious Specialized for science and technology (for example, biological patents and chemical patents )
  • Books wholly written by one or a small number of co- authors
  • Edited volumes , where each chapter is the responsibility of a different author or set of authors, while the editor is responsible for determining the scope of the project, keeping the work on schedule, and ensuring consistency of style and content
  • Presentations at academic conferences , especially those organized by learned societies
  • government deferrals Such As a forensic investigation Conducted by a government agency Such As the NTSB
  • Scientific publications on the World Wide Web
  • Books, technical reports , pamphlets , and working papers issued by individual researchers or research organizations on their own initiative; These are sometimes organized into a series
  • Blogs and science forums

The significance of these different components of the literature varies between disciplines and has changed over time. As of 2006 , peer-reviewed journal articles remain the predominant publication type, and have the highest prestige. However, journals vary enormously in their prestige and importance, and their status can influence the visibility and impact of the studies they publish. The significance of books, also called research monographs , depends on the subject. Generally published by university presses are usually considered more prestigious than those published by commercial presses. Citation needed ] The status of working papers and conference proceedingsdepends on the discipline; They are typically more important in the applied sciences . The value of publication as a preprint or scientific report on the web has been low in some subjects, such as mathematics or high energy physics , it is now an accepted alternative.

Scientific article

For a broader class or articles, see Scholarly article .
See also: Types of scientific journal articles


The current day-to-day records of scientific information are kept in research notebooks or logbooks. These are usually kept indefinitely as the basic evidence of the work, and are often kept in duplicate, signed, notarized, and archived. The purpose is to preserve the evidence for scientific priority, and in particular for priority for obtaining patents. They have also been used in scientific disputes. Since the availability of computers, the notebooks in some data-intensive fields have been kept in the database, and appropriate software is commercially available. [1]

The work on a project is typically published as one or more technical reports, or articles. In some fields both are used, with preliminary reports, working papers, or preprints followed by a formal article. Articles are usually prepared at the end of a project, or at the end of components of a large one. In preparing such an article vigorous rules for scientific writing have to be followed.

Clear communication and impact factor

See also: Impact factor and Copy editing

Often, career advancement depends on publishing in high-impact journals, which, especially in hard and applied sciences, are usually published in English. Consequently, scientists with poor English writing skills are at a disadvantage when trying to publish in these journals, regardless of the quality of the scientific study itself. [2] Yet many international universities require publication in these high-impact journals by both their students and faculty. One way that some international authors are beginning to overcome this problem is by contracting with freelance medical copy editors who are native speakers of English and specialize in English to a second language editing to polish their manuscripts’ Impact journals will accept.

Structure and Style

Main article: IMRAD

A scientific article has a standardized structure, which varies only slightly in different subjects. Although the IMRAD structure presents the organization of content and in scientific journals, each section (Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion) has unique conventions for scientific writing style. [3]

Ultimately, it is not the format that is important, but what lies behind it – the content. However, several key formatting requirements require to be met:

  1. The title attracts readers’ attention and informs them about the contents of the article. [4] Titles are distinguished into three main types: declarative titles, descriptive titles, and interrogative titles. [5] Some journals indicate, in their instructions to authors, the type (and length) of permitted titles.
  2. The names and affiliations of all authors are given. In the wake of some scientific misconduct cases, publishers often require that all co-authors know and agree on the content of the article. [6]
  3. An abstract summarizes the work (in a single paragraph or in several short paragraphs) and is intended to represent the article in bibliographic databases and to furnish subject metadata for indexing services.
  4. The context of previous scientific investigations should be presented, by reference to documents in the existing literature, usually in a section called “Introduction”.
  5. Empirical techniques, laid out in a section usually called “Materials and Methods”, should be described in such a way that a subsequent scientist, with appropriate knowledge of and experience in the field, should be able to repeat the observations and know whether he Or she has obtained the same result. This naturally varies between subjects, and does not apply to mathematics and related subjects.
  6. Similarly, the results of the investigation, in a section usually referred to as “Results”, should be presented in tabular or graphic form ( image , chart , schematic , diagram or drawing ). These displays should be accompanied by a caption and discussed in the text of the article.
  7. Interpretation of the meaning of the results is usually addressed in a “Discussion” or “Conclusions” section. The conclusions drawn should be based on the new empirical results and the fact that the conclusions are sound. That is, acceptance of the conclusions must not depend on personal authority , rhetorical skill , or faith .
  8. Finally, a “References” or “Literature Cited” sections lists the sources cited by the authors.

Peer review

Main article: Scholarly peer review

Though peer review and the learned journal are not only an essential part of scientific literature. They are essentially a means of quality control , which also encompasses other means to the same goal.

The term “quality” is used in conjunction with the definition of the term ” Novelty, and in certain fields. The Lack of peer review is What Makes MOST technical deferrals and World Wide Web publications unacceptable as contributions to the literature. The relative weak peer, which is often referred to as a “pearl”, is often referred to as a ” Of quality.

The emergence of institutional digital repositories can be applied to a print-based journal. Though publicizing a pre-eminent peer reviewed, it does not allow for a widely circulated. On the positive side this change has led to faster dissemination of novel work within the scientific community; On the negative it has made it more difficult to discern a valid scientific contribution from the unmeritorious.

Increasing reliance on abstracting services , especially those which are available electronically; In Particular, by the Specialized Service for the discipline Concerned Such As Chemical Abstract Service , and by the Major interdisciplinary services Such As Those Marketed by the Institute for Scientific Information .


The transfer of copyright from author to publisher, used by some journals, can be controversial because many authors want to propagate their ideas more widely and re-use their material elsewhere without the need for permission. Usually an author or authors circumvent that problem by rewriting an article and using other pictures. Some publishers may also want publicity for their journal so will approve facsimile reproduction unconditionally; Other publishers are more resistant. Citation needed ]

In terms of research publications, a number of key issues include and are not restricted to: [7]

  • Honesty. Honesty and integrity is a duty of each author and person, an expert reviewer and member of journal editorial boards.
  • Review process. The peer-review process is an essential step in determining the quality of the research. [8]
  • Ethical standards. Recent journal editorials presented some experience of unscrupulous activities. [9] [10]
  • Authorship. Who can claim a right to authorship? [7] In what order should the authors be listed?


See also: Scientific writing § History

The first recorded editorial pre-publication peer-review in 1665 by the founding editor of Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society , Henry Oldenburg . [11] [12]

Technical and scientific books Were a specialty of David Van Nostrand , and his Engineering Magazine re-published contemporary scientific items.


  1. Jump up^ Talbott, T .; Mr. Peterson; J. Schwidder; JD Myers (2005). “Adapting the electronic laboratory notebook for the semantic era”. International Symposium on Collaborative Technologies and Systems . 0 . Los Alamitos, CA, USA: IEEE Computer Society. pp. 136-143. ISBN  0-7695-2387-0 . Doi : 10.1109 / ISCST.2005.1553305 .
  2. Jump up^ Pan, Z; Gao, J (2006). “Crossing the language limitations” . PLOS Medicine . 3 (9): E410. PMC  1576334  . PMID  17002510 . Doi :10.1371 / journal.pmed.0030410 .
  3. Jump up^ Mogull, Scott A. (2017). Scientific And Medical Communication: A Guide For Effective Practice . New York: Routledge. ISBN  9781138842557 .
  4. Jump up^ Langdon-Neuner, Elise (2007). “Titles in medical articles: What do we know about them?” . The Write Stuff . 16 (4): 158-160 . Retrieved 25 February 2013 .
  5. Jump up^ Vasilev, Martin. “How to write a good title for journal articles” . JEPS Bulletin . European Federation of Psychology Students’ Associations . Retrieved 25 February 2013 .
  6. Jump up^ Scientific fraud # Responsibility of authors and of coauthors
  7. ^ Jump up to:a b Hubert Chanson (2008). Digital Publishing, Ethics and Hydraulic Engineering: The Elusive or “Boring” Bore? . In: Stefano Pagliara 2nd International Junior Researcher and Engineer Workshop on Hydraulic Structures (IJREW’08), Pisa, Italy, Keynote, pp. 3-13, 30 July-1 August 2008. ISBN  978-88-8492-568-8 .
  8. Jump up^ Hubert Chanson (2007). “Research Quality, Publications and Impact in Civil Engineering in the 21st Century, Publish or Perish, Commercial versus Open Access, Internet versus Libraries?” . Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering . 34 (8): 946-951. Doi : 10.1169 / L07-027 (inactive 2017-04-28).
  9. Jump up^ D. Mavinic (2006). “The” Art “of Plagiarism”. Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering . 33 (3): iii-vi.
  10. Jump up^ “Publication Ethical Standards: Guidelines and Procedures”. AIAA Journal . 45 (8): 1794. 2007 Bibcode : 2007AIAAJ..45.1794. . Doi :10.2514 / 1.32639 .
  11. Jump up^ Wagner (2006) p. 220-1
  12. Jump up^ Select Committee on Science and Technology. “The Origin of the Scientific Journal and the Process of Peer Review” . Parliament of the United Kingdom . Retrieved 5 December 2014 .

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