Scientific English

Scientific English is a specialized form of English

Scientific English uses conventions that can be different from literary English.

The two main conventions

  • Use active language (not passive) if possible.
    1. Experiments were conducted that show ….
      The experiments show … (preferred)
    2. Ten gram NaCl were added to the medium …
      The medium contained 10 g NaCl … (preferred)
  • Use short sentences
    If a sentence is longer than two lines consider breaking it in two parts.



Other conventions

  • “This / It”
    This’ and ‘It’ generally refer to the word or the contents of the sentence immediately before.
  • Do not use contractions but the long form:

    isn’t -> is not
    doesn’t -> does not
    haven’t -> have not

  • Consider to substituting these words for the more technical terms:

    have -> possess/contain
    use -> utilize
    get bigger -> increase
    get smaller -> decrease
    bigger -> larger/greater
    more -> additional