AnGenMap

Sample Discussion

Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts

From eduardo.casas@ars.usda.gov  Thu Aug 23 12:07:33 2012
From: "Eduardo Casas" 
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 12:07:33 -0500

Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) 
accepted in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would 
indicate what was done, not who did it).

In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of 
manuscripts in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, 
we did that, etc.). Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts?
Maybe it has always been accepted. If this is the case, I will stop 
nagging people when I read a manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it 
myself.

Eduardo Casas,
USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
Ames, IA 50010

From Joan.Lunney@ARS.USDA.GOV  Thu Aug 23 12:32:44 2012
From: "Lunney, Joan" 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 12:32:44 -0500

Eduardo
I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology 
Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
I'd say either is acceptable
Joan


Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
Research Scientist
Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
ANRI, ARS, USDA
Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
PH: 301-504-9368
FAX: 301-504-5306
email: Joan.Lunney@ars.usda.gov


-----Original Message-----
.From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casas@ars.usda.gov]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would 
indicate what was done, not who did it).

In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been accepted.
If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a 
manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.

Eduardo Casas,
USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
Ames, IA 50010

From mcnamara@wsu.edu  Thu Aug 23 15:09:25 2012
From: "McNamara, John P" 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 15:09:25 -0500

Dear Colleagues,

I would strongly recommend a book on this topic published in 1978!  By Dr. 
Lester King,  titled "Why not say it clearly.  A guide to scientific writing.  
There is a second edition:

Why Not Say It Clearly: A Guide to Expository Writing [Paperback],  if you type 
it into amazon it comes right up. 

In it he gives great examples from scientific writing as to how without giving 
up our honor and integrity and responsibility as scientists,  we can write so 
that complex ideas can actually be understood and that people will want to read 
what we have done.

I've been an author, reviewer and Editor now for 30 years,  and I will always 
write and review on the side of active tense, first person writing.    It is 
not that " the experiment was done"  or 'the hypothesis was tested."  
I conducted the experiment,  My (our) hypothesis is, this is what we think.

We are human beings,  we think, we write, we conduct experiments.  The third 
person passive holdout from the Victorian era is a waste of words and boring 
and obtuse to read.

I have had all my graduate students read it and write that way, and over the 
years have convinced by example, a number of colleagues as well,

Thanks,


John P McNamara
Scientist & Professor
Fellow, American Society of Animal Sciences
Department of Animal Sciences
WSU President's Teaching Academy
233 Clark Hall
Washington State University
Pullman WA 99164-6310
Phone: 509 335 4113
FAX: 509 335 1082
Email:mcnamara@wsu.edu

-----Original Message-----
.From: Lunney, Joan [mailto:Joan.Lunney@ARS.USDA.GOV]=20
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:33 AM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Eduardo
I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology 
Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
I'd say either is acceptable
Joan


Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
Research Scientist
Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
ANRI, ARS, USDA
Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
PH: 301-504-9368
FAX: 301-504-5306
email: Joan.Lunneyars.usda.gov


-----Original Message-----
.From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casasars.usda.gov]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would 
indicate what was done, not who did it).

In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been accepted.
If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a 
manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.

Eduardo Casas,
USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
Ames, IA 50010

From gianola@ansci.wisc.edu  Thu Aug 23 15:22:55 2012
From: Daniel Gianola 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 15:22:55 -0500

Eduardo,

And if you are the sole author, make sure you use "I", so that many will
comment (probably adversely) on your ego (:-)

Ego sum Daniel

-----Original Message-----
.From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casas@ars.usda.gov] 
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 12:08 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) 
accepted in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would 
indicate what was done, not who did it).

In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of 
manuscripts in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, 
we did that, etc.). Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts?
Maybe it has always been accepted. If this is the case, I will stop 
nagging people when I read a manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it 
myself.

Eduardo Casas,
USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
Ames, IA 50010

From gianola@ansci.wisc.edu  Thu Aug 23 16:27:59 2012
From: Daniel Gianola 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 16:28:00 -0500

John:

If I recall correctly, Jonathan Harker narrated in first person, when he
wrote to Mina in Bram Stoker's Dracula. Was this Victorian?

Most scientific writings in French and German are not in first person, and
they have been at war with Victorians (in the past)

None of "our founding fathers", e g., Wright, Fisher, Lush, Henderson or
Robertson wrote (or were prone to write) in first person. Were they boring?

Do mathematicians write in first person?  For example, "I let theta be an
n-dimensional vector, and the Laplacian for MY graph follows from the
Cartesian product that I have computed, so that I conclude..." The answer
is: "Seldom".

All this is a matter of preference, and it does not bother me a bit where
Gene Kelly sings 'I am singing in the rain". On the other hand, I [with
emphasis] dislike the 'I' in scientific writing, although I find the "we"
less pompous/arrogant/the works.

I have to go, and I send you my very personal regards.

Ego sum Daniel



-----Original Message-----
.From: McNamara, John P [mailto:mcnamara@wsu.edu] 
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 3:09 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.


Dear Colleagues,

I would strongly recommend a book on this topic published in 1978!  By Dr. 
Lester King,  titled "Why not say it clearly.  A guide to scientific writing.
There is a second edition:

Why Not Say It Clearly: A Guide to Expository Writing [Paperback],  if you
type it into amazon it comes right up. 

In it he gives great examples from scientific writing as to how without
giving up our honor and integrity and responsibility as scientists,  we can 
write so that complex ideas can actually be understood and that people will 
want to read what we have done.

I've been an author, reviewer and Editor now for 30 years,  and I will always 
write and review on the side of active tense, first person writing.  It is
not that " the experiment was done"  or 'the hypothesis was tested."  
I conducted the experiment,  My (our) hypothesis is, this is what we think.

We are human beings,  we think, we write, we conduct experiments.  The third
person passive holdout from the Victorian era is a waste of words and boring
and obtuse to read.

I have had all my graduate students read it and write that way, and over the
years have convinced by example, a number of colleagues as well,

Thanks,


John P McNamara
Scientist & Professor
Fellow, American Society of Animal Sciences
Department of Animal Sciences
WSU President's Teaching Academy
233 Clark Hall
Washington State University
Pullman WA 99164-6310
Phone: 509 335 4113
FAX: 509 335 1082
Email:mcnamara@wsu.edu

-----Original Message-----
.From: Lunney, Joan [mailto:Joan.Lunney@ARS.USDA.GOV]=20
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:33 AM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Eduardo
I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology 
Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
I'd say either is acceptable
Joan


Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
Research Scientist
Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
ANRI, ARS, USDA
Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
PH: 301-504-9368
FAX: 301-504-5306
email: Joan.Lunneyars.usda.gov


-----Original Message-----
.From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casasars.usda.gov]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would 
indicate what was done, not who did it).

In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been
accepted.

If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a 
manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.

Eduardo Casas,
USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
Ames, IA 50010

From santos@agro.uba.ar  Thu Aug 23 19:20:11 2012
Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
From: Santos Cristal Monica Graciela 
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 19:20:11 -0500

Active voice emphasizes the writer: Charles Henderson developed the
Mixed Models applied to Animal Breeding. This is good for Henderson´s
biography.

Passive voice emphasizes the subject: Mixed Models applied to Animal
Breeding were developed by Charles Henderson. This is better for a
paper about prediction of breeding value.

To tell a story we use the active voice because the reader can better
experience what is going on. On the same way, passive voice shows that
the writer is less emotional involved with the subject.

Active voice makes the reading easier as most people consider the
person more important than the subject. In scientific papers, the
importance is on the subject, so they are written in passive voice.
Perhaps, writing in active voice would let to a widely comprehension
of scientific writing, specially to get economic founding when the
sponsors are not scientific researchers.

Best regards:
Mónica

Ing. Agr. Mónica Santos Cristal de Sivak
Cátedra de Mejoramiento Genético Animal
Facultad de Agronomía - Universidad de Buenos Aires

- All real life is meeting - Vivimos realmente cuando nos encontramos -
Martin Buber

- Live every day as if it where your last, live every day as if you would
live forever - Vive cada día como si fuera el último, vive cada día como
sifueras a vivir para siempre - Albert B. Sabin

- A veces nos parece que nuestra obra es tan sólo una gota en el mar, pero
el mar no sería el mismo sin nuestra gota. Teresa de Calcuta.

From sburgess@cals.arizona.edu  Thu Aug 23 22:20:51 2012
From: Shane Burgess 
Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 22:20:51 -0500

See

http://execsec.od.nih.gov/plainlang/intro.html


On 8/23/2012 1:09 PM, McNamara, John P wrote:

>
> Dear Colleagues,
>
> I would strongly recommend a book on this topic published in 1978!  By Dr.
> Lester King,  titled "Why not say it clearly.  A guide to scientific writing.
> There is a second edition:
>
> Why Not Say It Clearly: A Guide to Expository Writing [Paperback],  if you type
> it into amazon it comes right up.
>
> In it he gives great examples from scientific writing as to how without giving
> up our honor and integrity and responsibility as scientists,  we can write so
> that complex ideas can actually be understood and that people will want to read
> what we have done.
>
> I've been an author, reviewer and Editor now for 30 years,  and I will always
> write and review on the side of active tense, first person writing.    It is
> not that "the experiment was done"  or 'the hypothesis was tested."
> I conducted the experiment,  My (our) hypothesis is, this is what we think.
>
> We are human beings,  we think, we write, we conduct experiments.  The third
> person passive holdout from the Victorian era is a waste of words and boring
> and obtuse to read.
>
> I have had all my graduate students read it and write that way, and over the
> years have convinced by example, a number of colleagues as well,
>
> Thanks,
>
>
> John P McNamara
> Scientist & Professor
> Fellow, American Society of Animal Sciences
> Department of Animal Sciences
> WSU President's Teaching Academy
> 233 Clark Hall
> Washington State University
> Pullman WA 99164-6310
> Phone: 509 335 4113
> FAX: 509 335 1082
> Email:mcnamara@wsu.edu
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Lunney, Joan [mailto:Joan.Lunney@ARS.USDA.GOV]=20
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:33 AM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Eduardo
> I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology
> Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
> I'd say either is acceptable
> Joan
>
>
> Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
> Research Scientist
> Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
> ANRI, ARS, USDA
> Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
> Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
> PH: 301-504-9368
> FAX: 301-504-5306
> email: Joan.Lunneyars.usda.gov
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casasars.usda.gov]
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
> in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
> I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would
> indicate what was done, not who did it).
>
> In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
> in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
> Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been accepted.
> If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a
> manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.
>
> Eduardo Casas,
> USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
> Ames, IA 50010

-- 
Shane Burgess | Vice Provost and Dean
The University of Arizona | College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
Forbes Building | 1140 E. So. Campus Drive | PO Box 210036 | Tucson, AZ 85721-0036

PHONE: 520.621.7621
FAX: 520.621.7196
EMAIL: sburgess@cals.arizona.edu
  

From igi2@cornell.edu  Thu Aug 23 23:02:05 2012
From: Ikhide Imumorin 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 23:02:05 -0500

See what is acceptable for a specific journal and follow its example. If in 
doubt, contact the editor(s). Using plain language may be less technical, 
but how is writing a journal paper not going to be technical and full of 
jargon? Research papers for the peer reviewed literature is not written for 
the layman!


Ikhide Imumorin, PhD
Assistant Professor
Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics Group
Dept of Animal Science
267 Morrison Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
USA
T 607-255-2850
F 607-255-9829
igi2@cornell.edu

http://www.ansci.cornell.edu/faculty/imumorin.html

Editorial Board, Journal of Veterinary Science and Medical Diagnosis
  - http://www.scitechnol.com/jvsmdhome.php
Associate Editor, Genomics and Quantitative Genetics
  - http://www.knoblauchpublishing.com
Associate Editor, Journal of Applied Animal Research
  - http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/TAAR
Review Editor, Frontiers in Genetics
  - http://www.frontiersin.org/genetics

"So why not go out on a limb, isn't that where the fruit is?" - Frank Scully


________________________________________
.From: Shane Burgess [sburgess@cals.arizona.edu]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 11:20 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

See

http://execsec.od.nih.gov/plainlang/intro.html


On 8/23/2012 1:09 PM, McNamara, John P wrote:

> Dear Colleagues,
>
> I would strongly recommend a book on this topic published in 1978! By Dr.
> Lester King, titled "Why not say it clearly. A guide to scientific writing.
> There is a second edition:
>
> Why Not Say It Clearly: A Guide to Expository Writing [Paperback], if you type
> it into amazon it comes right up.
>
> In it he gives great examples from scientific writing as to how without giving
> up our honor and integrity and responsibility as scientists, we can write so
> that complex ideas can actually be understood and that people will want to read
> what we have done.
>
> I've been an author, reviewer and Editor now for 30 years, and I will always
> write and review on the side of active tense, first person writing. It is
> not that "the experiment was done" or 'the hypothesis was tested."
> I conducted the experiment, My (our) hypothesis is, this is what we think.
>
> We are human beings, we think, we write, we conduct experiments. The third
> person passive holdout from the Victorian era is a waste of words and boring
> and obtuse to read.
>
> I have had all my graduate students read it and write that way, and over the
> years have convinced by example, a number of colleagues as well,
>
> Thanks,
>
>
> John P McNamara
> Scientist & Professor
> Fellow, American Society of Animal Sciences
> Department of Animal Sciences
> WSU President's Teaching Academy
> 233 Clark Hall
> Washington State University
> Pullman WA 99164-6310
> Phone: 509 335 4113
> FAX: 509 335 1082
> Email:mcnamara@wsu.edu
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Lunney, Joan [mailto:Joan.Lunney@ARS.USDA.GOV]=3D20
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:33 AM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Eduardo
> I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology
> Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
> I'd say either is acceptable
> Joan
>
>
> Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
> Research Scientist
> Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
> ANRI, ARS, USDA
> Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
> Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
> PH: 301-504-9368
> FAX: 301-504-5306
> email: Joan.Lunneyars.usda.gov
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casasars.usda.gov]
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
> in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
> I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would
> indicate what was done, not who did it).
>
> In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
> in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
> Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been
> accepted.  If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a
> manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.
>
> Eduardo Casas,
> USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
> Ames, IA 50010

--
Shane Burgess | Vice Provost and Dean
The University of Arizona | College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
Forbes Building|1140 E. So. Campus Drive|PO Box 210036|Tucson, AZ 85721-0036

PHONE: 520.621.7621
FAX: 520.621.7196
EMAIL: sburgess@cals.arizona.edu

From m.fortes@uq.edu.au  Thu Aug 23 23:31:23 2012
From: Marina Fortes 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 23:31:23 -0500

" 'I believe that the use of the first person and active voice gives a 
refreshing sense of directness ..."

A Guide to Scientific Writing - by David Lindsay


Marina R S Fortes
Post Doctoral Research Fellow
University of Queensland - QAAFI
Gatton bld 8114, room 314
Phone 61 7 54601969
Mobile 0431141617


-----Original Message-----
>From igi2cornell.edu  Thu Aug 23 23:02:05 2012
.From: Ikhide Imumorin 
.Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 23:02:05 -0500

See what is acceptable for a specific journal and follow its example. If in 
doubt, contact the editor(s). Using plain language may be less technical, 
but how is writing a journal paper not going to be technical and full of 
jargon? Research papers for the peer reviewed literature is not written for 
the layman!


Ikhide Imumorin, PhD
Assistant Professor
Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics Group
Dept of Animal Science
267 Morrison Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
USA
T 607-255-2850
F 607-255-9829
igi2cornell.edu

http://www.ansci.cornell.edu/faculty/imumorin.html

Editorial Board, Journal of Veterinary Science and Medical Diagnosis -
http://www.scitechnol.com/jvsmdhome.php
Associate Editor, Genomics and Quantitative Genetics -
http://www.knoblauchpublishing.com
Associate Editor, Journal of Applied Animal Research -
http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/TAAR
Review Editor, Frontiers in Genetics - http://www.frontiersin.org/genetics

"So why not go out on a limb, isn't that where the fruit is?" - Frank Scully


________________________________________
.From: Shane Burgess [sburgesscals.arizona.edu]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 11:20 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

See

http://execsec.od.nih.gov/plainlang/intro.html


On 8/23/2012 1:09 PM, McNamara, John P wrote:

> Dear Colleagues,
>
> I would strongly recommend a book on this topic published in 1978! By Dr.
> Lester King, titled "Why not say it clearly. A guide to scientific writing.
> There is a second edition:
>
> Why Not Say It Clearly: A Guide to Expository Writing [Paperback], if you type
> it into amazon it comes right up.
>
> In it he gives great examples from scientific writing as to how without giving
> up our honor and integrity and responsibility as scientists, we can write so
> that complex ideas can actually be understood and that people will want to read
> what we have done.
>
> I've been an author, reviewer and Editor now for 30 years, and I will always
> write and review on the side of active tense, first person writing. It is
> not that "the experiment was done" or 'the hypothesis was tested."
> I conducted the experiment, My (our) hypothesis is, this is what we think.
>
> We are human beings, we think, we write, we conduct experiments. The third
> person passive holdout from the Victorian era is a waste of words and boring
> and obtuse to read.
>
> I have had all my graduate students read it and write that way, and over the
> years have convinced by example, a number of colleagues as well,
>
> Thanks,
>
>
> John P McNamara
> Scientist & Professor
> Fellow, American Society of Animal Sciences
> Department of Animal Sciences
> WSU President's Teaching Academy
> 233 Clark Hall
> Washington State University
> Pullman WA 99164-6310
> Phone: 509 335 4113
> FAX: 509 335 1082
> Email:mcnamarawsu.edu
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Lunney, Joan [mailto:Joan.LunneyARS.USDA.GOV]=3D20
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:33 AM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Eduardo
> I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology
> Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
> I'd say either is acceptable
> Joan
>
>
> Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
> Research Scientist
> Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
> ANRI, ARS, USDA
> Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
> Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
> PH: 301-504-9368
> FAX: 301-504-5306
> email: Joan.Lunneyars.usda.gov
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casasars.usda.gov]
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
> in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
> I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would
> indicate what was done, not who did it).
>
> In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
> in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
> Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been accepted.
> If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a
> manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.
>
> Eduardo Casas,
> USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
> Ames, IA 50010

--
Shane Burgess | Vice Provost and Dean
The University of Arizona | College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
Forbes Building | 1140 E. So. Campus Drive | PO Box 210036 | Tucson, AZ 857=
21-0036

PHONE: 520.621.7621
FAX: 520.621.7196
EMAIL: sburgesscals.arizona.edu


 
Web Access Statistics 	© 2003-2012 NAGRP - Bioinformatics Coordination Program.
Contact: NAGRP Bioinformatics Team 	::Helpdesk::

From Frank.Siewerdt@cobb-vantress.com  Fri Aug 24 09:01:01 2012
From: "Siewerdt, Frank" 
Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Fri, 24 Aug 2012 09:01:01 -0500

Taking this debate to a different direction, could one write a paper in verse 
rather than in prose? Perhaps keeping metrics and other values used in poems 
could still preserve the information to be conveyed regardless of the voice 
telling the story:

 Getting a reading from that gel
 Sent me daily to a hell
 'Till I got to troubleshoot
 And results showed I'd excel
 No more danger to get the boot
 From advisor Daniel.

Sent from my iPhone


On Aug 23, 2012, at 23:03, "Ikhide Imumorin"  wrote:

.From: Ikhide Imumorin 
.Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
.Postmaster: submission approved
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 23:02:05 -0500

See what is acceptable for a specific journal and follow its example. If in 
doubt, contact the editor(s). Using plain language may be less technical, 
but how is writing a journal paper not going to be technical and full of 
jargon? Research papers for the peer reviewed literature is not written for 
the layman!


Ikhide Imumorin, PhD
Assistant Professor
Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics Group
Dept of Animal Science
267 Morrison Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
USA
T 607-255-2850
F 607-255-9829
igi2@cornell.edu

http://www.ansci.cornell.edu/faculty/imumorin.html

Editorial Board, Journal of Veterinary Science and Medical Diagnosis -
http://www.scitechnol.com/jvsmdhome.php
Associate Editor, Genomics and Quantitative Genetics -
http://www.knoblauchpublishing.com
Associate Editor, Journal of Applied Animal Research -
http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/TAAR
Review Editor, Frontiers in Genetics - http://www.frontiersin.org/genetics

"So why not go out on a limb, isn't that where the fruit is?" - Frank Scully


--------------------------------------------
.From: Shane Burgess [sburgess@cals.arizona.edu]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 11:20 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

See

http://execsec.od.nih.gov/plainlang/intro.html


On 8/23/2012 1:09 PM, McNamara, John P wrote:

> Dear Colleagues,
>
> I would strongly recommend a book on this topic published in 1978! By Dr.
> Lester King, titled "Why not say it clearly. A guide to scientific writing.
> There is a second edition:
>
> Why Not Say It Clearly: A Guide to Expository Writing [Paperback], if you
> type it into amazon it comes right up.
>
> In it he gives great examples from scientific writing as to how without
> giving up our honor and integrity and responsibility as scientists, we can
> write so that complex ideas can actually be understood and that people will
> want to read what we have done.
>
> I've been an author, reviewer and Editor now for 30 years, and I will always
> write and review on the side of active tense, first person writing. It is
> not that "the experiment was done" or 'the hypothesis was tested."
> I conducted the experiment, My (our) hypothesis is, this is what we think.
>
> We are human beings, we think, we write, we conduct experiments. The third
> person passive holdout from the Victorian era is a waste of words and boring
> and obtuse to read.
>
> I have had all my graduate students read it and write that way, and over the
> years have convinced by example, a number of colleagues as well,
>
> Thanks,
>
>
> John P McNamara
> Scientist & Professor
> Fellow, American Society of Animal Sciences
> Department of Animal Sciences
> WSU President's Teaching Academy
> 233 Clark Hall
> Washington State University
> Pullman WA 99164-6310
> Phone: 509 335 4113
> FAX: 509 335 1082
> Email:mcnamara@wsu.edu
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Lunney, Joan [mailto:Joan.Lunney@ARS.USDA.GOV]=3D20
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:33 AM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Eduardo
> I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology
> Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
> I'd say either is acceptable
> Joan
>
>
> Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
> Research Scientist
> Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
> ANRI, ARS, USDA
> Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
> Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
> PH: 301-504-9368
> FAX: 301-504-5306
> email: Joan.Lunneyars.usda.gov
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casasars.usda.gov]
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
> in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
> I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would
> indicate what was done, not who did it).
>
> In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
> in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
> Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been
> accepted.
> If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a
> manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.
>
> Eduardo Casas,
> USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
> Ames, IA 50010

--
Shane Burgess | Vice Provost and Dean
The University of Arizona | College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
Forbes Building | 1140 E. So. Campus Drive | PO Box 210036 | Tucson, AZ 857=
21-0036

PHONE: 520.621.7621
FAX: 520.621.7196
EMAIL: sburgess@cals.arizona.edu

From millor@usp.br  Fri Aug 24 09:28:11 2012
From: millor@usp.br
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Subject: Fwd: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Date: Fri, 24 Aug 2012 09:28:11 -0500

Dear Casas,

I think the use of the first-person plural (we) is more elegant and  
approximates authors and readers.

When we read a manuscript most often we forgot that a team of  
researchers, of persons are involved in the development of the study.

For example, the aim is of the researchers and not of the study.
The study was carried out to prove or not prove the hypothesis of the  
researchers.

Nowadays, I have been refereer of several journals and in my opinion  
the text using "we", for example, is more realistic and less boring.

Doubts or suggestions are welcome!

Kind regards,

Millor Fernandes do Rosario
University of Sao Paulo
Brazil



----- Mensagem encaminhada de m.fortes@uq.edu.au -----
Data: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 23:31:23 -0500
De: Marina Fortes 
Assunto: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Para: Multiple Recipients of 

" 'I believe that the use of the first person and active voice gives a
refreshing sense of directness ..."

A Guide to Scientific Writing - by David Lindsay


Marina R S Fortes
Post Doctoral Research Fellow
University of Queensland - QAAFI
Gatton bld 8114, room 314
Phone 61 7 54601969
Mobile 0431141617


-----Original Message-----
> From igi2cornell.edu  Thu Aug 23 23:02:05 2012
.From: Ikhide Imumorin 
.Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Date: Thu, 23 Aug 2012 23:02:05 -0500

See what is acceptable for a specific journal and follow its example. If in
doubt, contact the editor(s). Using plain language may be less technical,
but how is writing a journal paper not going to be technical and full of
jargon? Research papers for the peer reviewed literature is not written for
the layman!


Ikhide Imumorin, PhD
Assistant Professor
Animal Breeding, Genetics and Genomics Group
Dept of Animal Science
267 Morrison Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
USA
T 607-255-2850
F 607-255-9829
igi2cornell.edu

http://www.ansci.cornell.edu/faculty/imumorin.html

Editorial Board, Journal of Veterinary Science and Medical Diagnosis -
http://www.scitechnol.com/jvsmdhome.php
Associate Editor, Genomics and Quantitative Genetics -
http://www.knoblauchpublishing.com
Associate Editor, Journal of Applied Animal Research -
http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/TAAR
Review Editor, Frontiers in Genetics - http://www.frontiersin.org/genetics

"So why not go out on a limb, isn't that where the fruit is?" - Frank Scully


________________________________________
.From: Shane Burgess [sburgesscals.arizona.edu]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 11:20 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

See

http://execsec.od.nih.gov/plainlang/intro.html


On 8/23/2012 1:09 PM, McNamara, John P wrote:

> Dear Colleagues,
>
> I would strongly recommend a book on this topic published in 1978! By Dr.
> Lester King, titled "Why not say it clearly. A guide to scientific writing.
> There is a second edition:
>
> Why Not Say It Clearly: A Guide to Expository Writing [Paperback],  
> if you type it into amazon it comes right up.
>
> In it he gives great examples from scientific writing as to how without giving
> up our honor and integrity and responsibility as scientists, we can write so
> that complex ideas can actually be understood and that people will  
> want to read what we have done.
>
> I've been an author, reviewer and Editor now for 30 years, and I will always
> write and review on the side of active tense, first person writing. It is
> not that "the experiment was done" or 'the hypothesis was tested."
> I conducted the experiment, My (our) hypothesis is, this is what we think.
>
> We are human beings, we think, we write, we conduct experiments. The third
> person passive holdout from the Victorian era is a waste of words and boring
> and obtuse to read.
>
> I have had all my graduate students read it and write that way, and over the
> years have convinced by example, a number of colleagues as well,
>
> Thanks,
>
>
> John P McNamara
> Scientist & Professor
> Fellow, American Society of Animal Sciences
> Department of Animal Sciences
> WSU President's Teaching Academy
> 233 Clark Hall
> Washington State University
> Pullman WA 99164-6310
> Phone: 509 335 4113
> FAX: 509 335 1082
> Email:mcnamarawsu.edu
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Lunney, Joan [mailto:Joan.LunneyARS.USDA.GOV]=3D20
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 10:33 AM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Eduardo
> I've just finished editing a special issue of Veterinary Immunology
> Immunopathology and had articles with both approaches.
> I'd say either is acceptable
> Joan
>
>
> Joan K. Lunney, Ph.D.
> Research Scientist
> Animal Parasitic Diseases Laboratory
> ANRI, ARS, USDA
> Building 1040, Room 103, BARC-East
> Beltsville, MD 20705 USA
> PH: 301-504-9368
> FAX: 301-504-5306
> email: Joan.Lunneyars.usda.gov
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> .From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casasars.usda.gov]
> .Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 1:08 PM
> .To: Multiple Recipients of 
> .Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
>
> Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted
> in scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?
> I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would
> indicate what was done, not who did it).
>
> In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts
> in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.).
> Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always  
> been accepted.
> If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a
> manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.
>
> Eduardo Casas,
> USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
> Ames, IA 50010

--
Shane Burgess | Vice Provost and Dean
The University of Arizona | College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
Forbes Building | 1140 E. So. Campus Drive | PO Box 210036 | Tucson, AZ 857=
21-0036

PHONE: 520.621.7621
FAX: 520.621.7196
EMAIL: sburgesscals.arizona.edu

  

From gianola@ansci.wisc.edu  Fri Aug 24 10:54:42 2012
From: Daniel Gianola 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Fri, 24 Aug 2012 10:54:42 -0500

This is an interesting document, discussing pros and cons:

http://cgi.duke.edu/web/sciwriting/index.php?action=passive_voice

As to Monica's interesting comments, there is a lack of randomized studies
on whether use of active or passive voice enhances or degrades scientific
communication.

Anyhow, journals typically have the last say.

Daniel





  

From dr.akin.pala@gmail.com  Mon Aug 27 06:47:05 2012
From: Akin Pala 
Subject: Re: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Mon, 27 Aug 2012 06:47:05 -0500

I agree. People used to find solutions to their problems by debating.
Now we are in the era of experimentation and evidence. So, randomized
studies is the way to go.

I would like to suggest that papers use both styles. Materials and
methods section should include the passive voice style, and we can use
active voice in the discussion section. Here is a good paper on that:

Passive Voice and Rhetorical Role in Scientific Writing
Kathryn Riley, A1  University of Minnesota, Duluth

Abstract:
As analysts of scientific writing begin to modify their stance against
the passive voice and explore the complexities of its use, more research 
is needed on the rhetorical functions it serves in scientific writing. 
An analysis of twelve articles reporting experimental studies in 
speech-language pathology revealed consistently higher percentages of 
passive structures in the Method and Results sections, with relatively 
lower percentages in the Introduction and Discussion sections. These 
findings suggest that passive structures are more appropriate for 
expository purposes, in those sections where the author's rhetorical 
role is to describe procedures and present data.  In contrast, active 
structures are more appropriate for argumentative purposes, in those 
sections where the author is criticizing previous research or advocating 
a new thesis.
Journal of Technical Writing and Communication
  	Issue:  	Volume 21, Number 3 / 1991
  	Pages:  	239 - 257

And oh, we could not see Monica's comments. I think she just sent them
to you, instead of the group.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Akin Pala
http://members.comu.edu.tr/akin/
Department Head of Animal Science


On Fri, Aug 24, 2012 at 6:54 PM, Daniel Gianola  wrote:

> This is an interesting document, discussing pros and cons:
>
> http://cgi.duke.edu/web/sciwriting/index.php?action=passive_voice
>
> As to Monica's interesting comments, there is a lack of randomized studies
> on whether use of active or passive voice enhances or degrades scientific
> communication.
>
> Anyhow, journals typically have the last say.
>
> Daniel

From jgibson5@une.edu.au  Wed Aug 29 23:48:38 2012
From: John Gibson 
Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.
Postmaster: submission approved
To: Multiple Recipients of 
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2012 23:48:38 -0500

Daniel's comment reminds me of a very well known, mild mannered gentleman 
Professor of our profession who many years ago was asked by a keen neophyte 
geneticist, "Where do you go when you want to read a really good paper". He 
thought carefully for a moment before he looked the young man in the eye and 
said "Generally I sit down and write it first".

Of course he was never so undignified as to use the first or third person in 
his papers.....except in the acknowledgements where, as he once advised me, 
it was appropriate that the authors of the paper be clear about the personal 
gratitude they owe to others.

Cheers.............John


-----Original Message-----
.From: Daniel Gianola [mailto:gianola@ansci.wisc.edu]=20
.Sent: Friday, 24 August 2012 6:23 AM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: RE: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Eduardo,

And if you are the sole author, make sure you use "I", so that many will 
comment (probably adversely) on your ego (:-)

Ego sum Daniel

-----Original Message-----
.From: Eduardo Casas [mailto:eduardo.casas@ars.usda.gov]
.Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 12:08 PM
.To: Multiple Recipients of 
.Subject: Use of first person in writing manuscripts.

Is the use of writing manuscripts in first person becoming (more) accepted in 
scientific literature? Has it always been accepted?

I was taught a manuscript should be written in third person (it would 
indicate what was done, not who did it).

In the past couple of years I have seen an increase in number of manuscripts 
in which the word 'we' is used consistently (We did this, we did that, etc.). 
Is this accepted now when writing manuscripts? Maybe it has always been 
accepted. If this is the case, I will stop nagging people when I read a 
manuscript. Hey, maybe I'll start doing it myself.

Eduardo Casas,
USDA, ARS, National Animal Disease Center.
Ames, IA 50010

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