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Ten tips for scientific writing

Be precise and specific!

Try to avoid vague terms of quantity - lot, little, slightly, very  - as these can change meaning with context, and so be unclear and hard to interpret.  If you have actual data, measurements or statistics, use those instead and let your readers make their own judgment.  By allowing your audience to see your data and assess it for themselves, you are establishing your own credibility.

You may wish to draw your readers' attention to the importance of a particular piece of data with an adjective or adverb, such as 'significant' or 'unusually', but it is still best to include the data itself, to demonstrate why it was significant or unusual.

There may be few occasions when it may still be appropriate not to use specific quantities - such as when writing for a non-technical audience, or trying to briefly summarise large amounts of data - but these are rare exceptions.  For example, 'The output increased significantly by 23.72%' NOT 'The output increased by a large amount.'