A Masters Guide for Writing Chemistry Papers

Writing a master's level chemistry paper involves considerable challenges, but the experience is profoundly rewarding and offers substantial satisfaction. This type of academic writing task provides students with a unique opportunity to combine research/writing skills with analytical thinking.

Chemistry is a fundamentally important science with an outstanding number of economic benefits, ranging from drug research in healthcare to oil and gas in heavy industry. As a result, chemical science is among the main drivers of global economic development. In this respect, writing chemistry papers is of paramount importance to the communication of the research findings to a wider audience, contributing to the development of science.

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The blog post aims to discuss the scope of chemistry articles, outlining the main differences between various types of chemistry papers. Then moving on to discussing the primary structural components of a chemistry paper, before, presenting the ethical aspects of the research and underlining the necessity of consistent citation styles. Plus, plenty of academic writing help and tips!

The Scope of Masters Chemistry Papers

The purpose of any chemistry paper is to present findings of research in a new area that has not previously been carried out. However, before collecting any information for the paper, it is important to identify whether the targeted work is a research article, a review, or a case study.

A research article is a type of journal article that reports on the carried out research. Research articles are always used as primary sources of information. In turn, a review article is a paper that summarises the current research on the topic and understanding of the field. Finally, scientific findings can be reported in the format of case studies. These studies are defined as procedures, techniques, or means for data/evidence collection reported in the format of an examination of one case.

Once the scope of your article is identified and the format established, it is also necessary to consider the target audience. This aspect of the paper is highly important as it will set the tone of the article and determine the nature of the presented information.

Article Structuring and Writing

Based on the outlined above definitions it is clear that different chemistry papers have different focuses and, consequently, different formats. However, in a dominating number of cases, all chemistry papers follow similar structural patterns. In this respect, a chemistry paper is expected to contain an abstract, introduction, methods, results, discussion, conclusions, reference list and appendices.

Abstract

The purpose of the abstract section is to summarise the main findings of the paper. It is usually no more than 200 words. The structure of the abstract is the same as the pattern of the paper in terms of the main sections. However, everything is fused together with the primary focus of the employed methodology and the generated results. The final sentences of the abstract summarise the main conclusions.

The abstract is a highly important section, however, it should be written last when the whole work is completed, the results established and conclusions made.

Introduction

The introductory section sets the context of the work and discusses the significance of the investigated topic. It is used to inform the reader of the research that was carried out in the area and give the main definitions. In many cases, to collect the information for this section, scientific databases are consulted for primary research articles. These databases may include ScienceDirect, PubMed or Google Scholar. For the research to be up to date it is important to include publications that were released within the past 10 years.

The introduction is concluded with the aim of the work and research objectives.

Methodology

The contents of this section will depend on whether the chemistry paper is aimed at summarising/reporting findings of other publications in the area (review paper) or presenting experimental data that was generated during a series of laboratory experiments (research paper).

In the former case, the methodology section outlines how literature was collected, what scientific databases were used, and what inclusion/exclusion criteria were applied. In the latter type of paper, apparatus description should be initially provided, as well as the reagents used, and the experiments carried out. The description of the methodology is expected to provide enough detail to make the work reproducible by other researchers.

Results

As the name suggests, this section summarises results obtained during the experimental work or the main literature findings obtained as the result of a systematic literature search. While working on this section, it is important not to overload the article with data or start the discussion of the findings. To avoid this negative presentation of information, a portion of experimental data can be presented in the results section, with the rest included in the appendix.

Discussion

Once all the results are collected it is important to interpret them in context with published literature. In cases where there are deviations from the bulk of the literature data, possible sources of these deviations should be explored. While interpreting the results it is important to reduce the possibility of bias as much as possible. To do this, publications by different research groups, released in different years, and available through different databases should be considered. Finally, the limitations of the research should be identified, and future research developed through the perspective of these limitations. Depending on the context of the work and the primary findings, the discussion section can be fused with either results or conclusions.

Conclusions

This section is final in any type of chemistry paper. It aims to summarise the main findings of the work and the implications of these findings. No references are given in this section.

Reference list

The reference list summarises the articles that were used to write the chemistry paper. It should be presented in a consistent format, following a predetermined style. Common styles include Harvard, APA, MLA, Vancouver, Oxford, and Chicago. Specialised software, such as EndNote or MS Referencing can be used to automatically generate the list or make changes from one style to another on the fly. Check out our complete guide if you need academic referencing help.

Additional points to consider when writing a Masters chemistry paper

These major sections are expected in the majority of papers, however depending on the research, there may also be statistical test data, and interpretation of NMR, IR, and MS experiments. This information can be included in the appendix and referenced in the main body of the work.

Editing programs can be used to remove grammatical errors and redundancy along with enhancing text readability and presentation. Also, as the work is finished it is beneficial to ask a colleague or the supervisor to read it and give constructive criticism. With this approach points that are overlooked can be discussed and less relevant information removed.

Conclusions

Writing chemistry papers can be a challenging experience for any bachelors or a postgraduate student. As new laboratory information is generated during the work of the research group, you may be required to re-analyse and re-write portions or critical sections of the paper. This work is a resource-consuming process that requires time, dedication and inspiration. To avoid unnecessary stress, you can seek science specialist academic essay writing help to get the support you need in critical situations, making the learning experience more enjoyable.

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