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Brevity in Manuscript (II)

As promised at the conclusion of Part 1 in this series, Part 2 will describe a well-formed introduction, discuss the objectives of this section, and identify necessary vs unnecessary content.

The introduction, like many sections, typically accrues unnecessary content as consequence of misunderstanding the purpose of this section. The introduction is an opportunity to discuss the issue or problem being addressed by the study. This is the author’s best opportunity to convince the reviewers that the study satisfies two crucial criteria for publication: novelty and impact. Unfortunately, many authors choose to focus the introduction on the following, secondary, components.

The approaches above should be avoided. Additionally, we have included some specific details that can be reduced or omitted in the introduction to improve brevity and clarity.

There are several crucial elements of an effective introduction, and they deserve their own article. Here, we have provided some tactics to reduce the length of your introduction and improve readability. Remember, you do not want the readers (or reviewers) to fatigue themselves on an unwieldy introduction before they have been able to process your results and conclusions. Additionally, we highlight two common, but flawed, writing approaches that will always have intrinsic brevity and clarity issues. Avoid these approaches at all costs, as no amount of tricks or tips will improve the brevity of introductions structured in those styles.

In the next part of this series, we will provide tactics for efficiently communicating the most information dense section of the manuscript: the methods.

(Please retain the reference in reprint: http://www.letpub.com/index.php?page=author_education_brevity_in_manuscript_2)


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