Scientific writing clinic

30 November, 7 and 14 December 2006


Dr Heather Murray, Abteilung für Angewandte Linguistik, Universität Bern (heather.murray(at)zsk.unibe.ch)


The chief aim of the course is to enable participants to improve their written scientific English to such an extent that their articles are considered by high-impact journals in their field.

summary and pre-course assignment

The course takes a 'hands-on' approach to writing, with all participants receiving individual help in correcting and re-structuring their own writing, which they should have started before the beginning of the course.

The course consist of three main components:
- Linguistic components of better writing, including areas like word order, text linkers, tenses, cohesion, scientific style, and text flow.
- Linguistic characteristics of research texts: the textual characteristics of abstracts as well as of introduction, results, discussion and methods sections.
- Self-help strategies for scientific writers, such as the effective use of model articles as well as books and online references in checking style, grammar, terminology and usage in specific fields.

Attendance with active participation on all 3 days is required. This means participants must submit 3-10 pages of an article/dissertation before the beginning of the course, and continue to work on their text in the weeks while the course is taking place.

Mrs Heather Murray will contact directly all registered participants 1 month before the beginning of the course.

general information

Dates:  Thursdays 30 November, 7 and 14 December 2006

Schedule: 8.55 - 17.00

Location: University of Neuchâtel, Uni Mail, Institut de chimie, room B1

Credit points: 2.0 credit points (Communication)

Evaluation: Active participation including preparation (home work as described)

Information: Please contact the  NCCR education officer Dr. Christiane Bobillier or Dr. Heather Murray 

Travel expenses: NCCR Ph.D. participants are eligible for reimbursement of incurred travel expenses by train (half-fare card, and 2nd class). Please send the original tickets (no copies, except for the general abonnement) to Dr. Christiane Bobillier.  No reimbursement for bus, taxi or car travel expenses will be paid.


This course is opened to all Ph.D. student, however priority is given to doctoral programme "Plants and their Environment" participants. Postdocs and diploma students are welcome depending on availability.

Minimum number of participants: 8, maximum: 12. Course full.

This course is free, but the effective cost is approx. CHF 500.00 per person. Therefore a waiting list will be prepared to ensure that there are no empty seats.

Registration: closed.

Deadline: November 13, 2006