Using IMRaD to organize article content

In his presentation “Why Your Journal Articles Are Confusing, and How IMRaD Can Help”, Thomas Deetjen, author of Published, offered advice for tightening your articles’ structure around the IMRaD format as a method for getting jumbled thoughts into words that your readers will understand.

Deetjen says, “If you know where things are supposed to go, then you can write your article that way in the first place, and you can edit your articles in a way that will move information around into the correct places.” He advises, quite simply, to put information where readers expect to see it.

Strategies for revising and editing

During our last #AcWriChat Tweetchat event on June 12th, we discussed the difference between revision and editing in addition to strategies for completing both of these essential elements of the academic writing process. Chat participants Marc Ouellette and Sonal Mehta added their perspectives to the discussion.

Below is a summary of the ideas and resources presented during the event.

Revising academic texts: Efficiency & style

Kaizen – translated to mean a change for the good – is Erin McTigue’s word of the year and the guiding principle behind her 2019 TAA Conference Presentation, “Revising Academic Texts: Efficiency & Style”.

Delivering a dynamic and interactive session, McTigue shared useful strategies to improve the flow and readability of your writing efforts through effective revision. Below we summarize six of those techniques that you can apply to your current manuscript to make your own change for the good.

Publish & Flourish: Revising around key sentences

At the 2018 Textbook & Academic Authoring Conference in Santa Fe, NM, Dr. Tara Gray presented on her twelve-step program, “Publish & Flourish: Become a Prolific Scholar”. Steps 7 & 8 of the program focus on the revision process by identifying and using key sentences in each paragraph as follows:

Step 7: Revise paragraphs around key sentences

Step 8: Use key sentences as an after-the-fact or reverse outline

In order to complete step 7 and revise paragraphs around key sentences, it’s important to first identify the key sentence in each paragraph. So, what is a key sentence?