Michigan State University

Writing in the Medical Sciences: The Basics

This guide contains resources for writing in the medical field

Writing Assistance

The MSU Writing Center provides writing assistance to students and faculty and is available for both in-person and online consultations.  

They also have a number of resources with writing advice, tips, and tricks.

Contact the Writing Center to schedule a writing consultation.

Academic Integrity

It is up to the writer to uphold academic integrity and avoid plagiarism.  Here are a number of resources that discuss what to consider when writing to insure academic integrity:

Plagiarism 101     

What is Plagiarism and How to Avoid It

When Does Something Need to be Cited?

Paraphrasing vs. Quoting

How to Paraphrase a Source

Examples of Paraphrasing

Resources for International Students

Some language resources for writers who are not native English speakers and would like a little extra help or practice.

ESL Common Errors Workbook

Contains tutorials and interactive practice activities that teach the user how to avoid common ESL errors.

Handbook of Biomedical Research Writing

Originally written for Korean scientists in the biomedical sciences, this guide offers helpful information to other non-native English speakers.

Getting Started

When writing, it is important to have a clear idea of what you want to say as well as who your intended audience is.  These resources discuss some of the things to keep in mind to make sure you get your point across clearly and concisely.

The Science of Scientific Writing

Article from American Scientist about the importance of writing with the reader in mind.

The Craft of Research

This guide explains how to build a persuasive argument and anticipate and respond to the reservations of readers.

What is a Critical Argument?

Describes features of a well-written argument and provides examples. 

Marc E. Tischler's Scientific Writing Booklet

Concise guide to the style and function of scientific writing.

Types of Writing in Medicine

Throughout the course of your career in medicine you will be expected to produce writing in a number of different formats.  The Writing Center at UNC at Chapel Hill has a number of short guides available on a wide range of topics about writing.

Some types of writing you may be expected to do, although not an inclusive list, include:

Two other guides from UNC that are extremely useful are the ones on Figures and Charts and Editing and Proofreading.


Writing in the Health Sciences: A Comprehensive Guide

This guide developed by the University of Toronto also contains information on a wide range of writing types.  Note: To access the full-text on a topic, select either the PDF or HTML link to the right of the topic name in the table of contents.

Grammar and Style

The following resources are helpful for using proper grammar and spelling of medical terms.

Stedman's Medical Dictionary

A direct link to this resource is not currently available.  Selecting this link will take you to the main STAT!Ref page.  To access Stedman's, choose Tools & Features above the list of titles on the left side of the page, then select Stedman's Medical Dictionary from the resulting menu.

Merriam-Webster Medical Dictionary from MedlinePlus

A basic medical dictionary created for the general public, but a good resource to check spelling of medical terms.

Whonamedit? - Dictionary of Medical Eponyms

A great resource for medical eponyms - drugs or disease named after a person.

Guide to Grammar and Writing

In-depth guide by the Capital Community College Foundation about grammar and how to avoid common writing mistakes.

Health Sciences Librarian

Andrea Kepsel
Contact:
MSU Libraries
366 W Circle Drive
Room WG-1i
East Lansing, MI 48824
(517) 884-0898
Website / Blog Page

Health Sciences Librarian

Abraham Wheeler

awheeler@msu.edu

 

MSU Libraries
366 W. Circle Drive WG-1D
East Lansing, MI 48824
517-884-0893

skype me@ awheeler.msu
 

Subjects:Communicative Sciences and Disorders
 

 
 

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