Science is not just limited to experiments, analyses and interpretations. It demands a fine elaboration through a strong and well written article so that people could understand your work. This is the way we communicate our findings and innovations to the scientific community or any other who is interested in knowing our work. Here, I am no expert or professional advisor to list the instructions. I am just going to share some points that I think work in a great way. In fact, I am not going to limit this piece to just scientific writing. It could be any form of professional communication that involves writing in English (because we all know it’s not just the ‘writing’ part that makes many people nervous but English).
A lot of effort goes into choosing correct vocabulary, knowing correct grammar and crisp sentence formation for academic/professional purposes. Academic English is very different from casual English, and it is normal to feel little nervous or scared by its challenges.

So first and most important thing to be remembered is that you do not have to run away from this. Even the greatest writers got it with time and practice. Trust me, today when I look back at my M.Sc. thesis, I literally laugh and probably I will laugh at this very post at some point of time in future. You hardly get the perfection in writing, you just develop your command over the language with practice and that command and ease with words seem perfect to people who read it.
So, how can you get over the fear of English? Some English course? May be. But JUST English classes? I don’t think so. If just a course or syllabus could have the capability to make you fluent in speaking or writing correct English, I think this fear shouldn’t be existing. We have been dealing with English since our childhood. Still, we face problems in understanding the language’s rules correctly. Have you every thought why? Because we have always taken it as a ‘Subject’ not as a language. Have you ever wondered why we face no problem in speaking our native language? Even a little child speaks his own language without learning it on a paper and pen. You must have got an answer. We all speak our native language without ‘passing any subject’ because we have been listening to it since childhood. We know the grammar of our language. We know the difference of the present, past and future tense. We know which word should be used at a particular place. Take English in same manner. You have to have command over the grammar and that you will have to rehearse many times. Now the question is – ‘ Will this be enough to write good?’ NO! This will be enough to write right which is the first need. Question is now- ‘How to NOT write BAD’.

I will give a small example of what I meant by saying ‘How to not write bad’. Look at the last sentence of above paragraph. Tell me would it be wrong if I say- ‘Now, the question is- ‘How to NOT write BAD’. Sounds more appropriate; right? See! This is what makes a difference in writing. Things usually do not seem to make a difference unless you have a better way to put them in a sentence. Now let me give you an example where it is hard to pick the bad thing in a sentence. Let me say- “I carefully have to hold the glasses”. A usual glance at this sentence would not give you the hint about the word carefully which is more appropriately should be used as- ”I have to carefully hold the glasses”. Okay ! I am going to give one more example (last, I promise!) of a very common thing that I do many times. Pay attention to this sentence- ‘A number of ideas comes to my mind when I intend to write on my site’. Since the rule tells to use ‘s’ or ‘es’ in verb when it is with a singular subject in a ‘Present Indefinite Tense’, I can use comes because number is singular but here in this sentence using ‘come’ is better to use even though the number’ is singular subject. You ask why? That’s because the emphasis is on ‘ideas‘ which is plural. Just like this, if in any sentence, emphasis is on the singular collective, the singular verb should be preferable. Some more examples? Here you go !

  • ‘A bucket of flowers IS (not ‘are’)
  • ‘Priyanka is one of the research scholars who ARE (not ‘is’) given the responsibility of conducting lab experiments.

So, what I have tried to explain in this little post is that it is a different thing to write a sentence in a correct grammar (which is by the way first requirement) but it is whole other thing to use a correct place for an adverb in a sentence or using a more appropriate preposition and punctuation or knowing the words that (or which?) should be avoided in a scientific article or using a correct tone. Practice these things too. One straight way to do it is reading as much as you can. Hearing the language also helps a lot. I hope this little piece helped in understanding the fact that writing is totally dependent to practice and one may conquer the fear of bad writing just by coping up with it. My English guru is my father (who by the way studied in a village and commanded over English on his own). He always says-‘ When you have to write anything; start strong and end strong.’ I do not know how much I justified his words but at last I would say that fearing over English would not help you in your research. Do not feel shy or embarrassed if you have less command over English or writing skills. It is a language and any language is commanded through practice only. At least, I , having all my primary education in my native language medium can say it. If I can, , SO CAN YOU ! (not bragging, saying it in the most humble way possible and I am still learning , still polishing !)

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University Grants Commission (UGC) has launched Online Student’s Grievance Redressal portal. This is a new initiative taken by UGC which facilitates the students/complainants to lodge his or her grievance, send reminder and view status on action taken with regard to their grievance(s) online.

It is hereby informed to all the students of University of Allahabad to visit the website www.ugc.ac.in/grievance to lodge their grievances related to University of Allahabad, for any querry contact on pro.allduniv@gmail.com

 

Reference-

DR. Munish Kumar

Nodal Officer
Online Student’s Grievance Redressal System
University of Allahabad
Email ID: munish@allduniv.ac.in

Recently, University of Allahabad has announced  the applications for Master Visiting Fellowship in Big Data Research at Heidelberg University, Germany . A full advertisement can be seen at-  http://allduniv.ac.in/ckfinder/userfiles/files/Final%20Advt%20171117.pdf
Since I am from the same University, I would write my first post about writing  a ‘Letter of Motivation’ which might help my fellows over there meanwhile can be read by anyone of-course!

Usually when you apply anywhere you need to fulfill some specific kind of requirements which usually include writing a formal application, letter of motivation, research proposal etc. Usually it is hard for grad students to write a crisp, clean and clear letter of motivation. To be honest, you may find several posts on the internet which do tell you how to write professionally. They are good enough to clearly tell you what points should be included, what not and many other things to learn about professional writing. Still, when I look back at my graduation days, I know even after reading many instructions I was not able to write ‘to-the-point’. According to me , writing skill is not something that you can part in binary like- ‘I write perfectly’ or ‘I can not write even a word’. It is something that you learn and get better with the the time. So, I am not going to pin-point the suggestions because you can get it many where but some ‘to-the-point’ things which you may use directly in your letter.

  • How to start- 

Your very first line should not be just a line but an impression and reference. None would want to read you unless he knows what it is about. Just like this post. If I would not have written that it is about writing a motivation-letter, you probably would not get annoyed. So start by writing what your letter is about. It could seem like this-

 Letter of Application

 

Your address and contact details

Receiver’s Address

Dear XYZ

I would like to apply for the…..

or

I am writing here to apply for the…

or

This is regarding your advert. published….

  • Then Tell Background like-

As my resume reveals, I have Bachelor`s degree from XYZ University  and currently, I am…..

  • Be sure to signify your institution/University like-

I am privileged to obtain my postgraduate education in Bioinformatics at University of Allahabad (A central University of India, Known as Oxford of East) which is known for its enriching academic ambiance where learning and research complement each other.

  • Then tell about your professional experience like-

Being taught by eminent faculty, I have developed a big interest and passion towards Bioinformatics and  managed to have a strong foundation in ……

  • After that tell how this position would help you, like-

The opportunity to participate in this study would foster….

  • Assure them that you will make use of whatever you learn there, like-

I plan to ensure the further dissemination of the knowledge and experience gained by this opportunity in…

  • Close the letter with usual formality, like-

I, hereby enclose a copy of my CV/Resume (whatever it is, there is a difference we all know it) with the hope of consideration. Looking forward to hearing from you.
Sign it.

All the things written above is just my view. You still should see and learn which can be done by one thing and that is -reading about it. Then , please try to write yourself, do not copy /paste. Whatever is written in the post is just to have an idea about the things that should be included in the letter of motivation. You need to write accordingly with a wise choice of words.
Hope this was helpful. You may comment or ask anything if you want to.

Happy Applying.

Pallavi

Admin (BioinfoGeeks)

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