From 3 September 2018 09:00 to 15 October 2018 12:00

Writing a Scientific Paper (course)

Course Description

This six-session course covers all basic skills and topics of the writing process, structure and style of a scientific paper. It is not mandatory for participants to be writing an article at the time of the course, but if you wish, you may submit a draft for discussion and feedback. Between every session you should plan two hours of study time to carry out small writing assignments.

What will you learn

This course offers practical guidelines for a successful approach of your (future) writing task. Special attention is paid to the problems of the beginning writer: how to start, how to determine what you have to say, how to overcome writing blocks, how to compose a coherent line of thought?

The programme contains the following topics:

  • The process of writing: a systematic method for writing and revision
  • Design of a paper and structure of sections (Introduction, Materials and Methods, Results, Discussion)
  • The research question and your key message
  • Building paragraphs: coherence, use of conjunctions, topic sentences
  • Academic style: characteristics, vocabulary, passive or active voice, sentence length, cautious language, verb tenses
  • Critical review of (parts of) research papers
  • Writing critically: argumentation
  • English as a foreign language, grammar pitfalls

Target group

We recommend this course especially to PhD candidates in their first or second year. During the training the primary focus lies on the writing process of a paper and on the linguistics of academic writing: structure, cohesion, and style.

Course schedule

Monday mornings from 09.00 - 12.00.
September 3, 10 and 17, (one week break), October 1, 8 and 15, 2018.


Annemarie van der Zeeuw - Focus op Tekst 

Max. number of participants


Number of credits

2.0 EC

Course certificate

You will receive a course certificate on condition that you are present at least 5 sessions.

Course fee

Course fee internal PhD candidates: €150.
Course fee external participants: €450.

‘Internal PhD candidates’ refers to PhD candidates who are working (either on a salary or on a scholarship) at the faculty of Science, faculty of Veterinary Medicine or UMC Utrecht. Please note that you can use your personal course budget of €400/year (€1,600 max) to pay for these courses. This budget is managed by your department (faculty of Science/Veterinary Medicine) or your Division (UMC Utrecht). 

‘External participants’ include PhD candidates working elsewhere (even those registered with the PhD programmes of the Graduate School of Life Sciences, e.g. at the Hubrecht Institute), PhD candidates from other Schools and postdocs.

You can take this course any time during your PhD, since you do not have to be writing your own article
This course really helps you how to get started with writing, what to do when you have a writer's block and dealing with common pitfalls in English writing
Start date and time
3 September 2018 09:00
End date and time
15 October 2018 12:00
Entrance fee
Course fee internal PhD candidates: €150. Course fee external participants: €450.
More information
PhD Course Centre