On April 6, 13, and 20, from 15:00 to 17:00 (WIB), VDMI held the Series of Scientific Writing facilitated by Bapak Jan Passchier, the former secretary of VDMS Board Netherland as well as Emeritus Professor of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The three parts of the series discussed Introduction to Scientific Writing and How to Find Problems (Part 1), Formulating Research Question (Part 2), as well as The Structure of Manuscript, Method, and Analysis (Part 3)
A Latin proverb, ‘Verba Volant, Scripta Manent’ means that words that are spoken will vanish; words that are written will last forever. Thus, writing is important for the present and the future. So, how can we get inspiration to start writing? Pak Jan provided an example when he experienced migraine, he was inspired to search more on how migraine could happen.
Another way to find inspiration for writing is by reading previous research articles from reputable journals (with high impact factors). Every study uses recommendations for future research. Furthermore, academic journals are typically always updated yearly. So, they can be our references for scientific writing. The IMRAD model (Sylvia PJ, 2019) is commonly used in scientific writing. The model started with the Introduction, and followed by Method, Result, Discussion, and References. Scientific writing also uses methods and writing styles agreed by the body of scientists. So, it can be replicated and accounted for.
As the closing for the first part, Pak Jan shared the quote from one of the characters from the Harry Potter movie that stated, “In the future, people should choose whether to do the easy things or do the good things.” Doing good things has never been easy, so does writing. Creating scientific writing needs diligence and commitment, just like climbing Mount Everest. Thus, Pak Jan suggested the students prepare ahead for their final research (skripsi).
In the second part, several ways to find ideas and how to formulate the ideas into research questions were discussed. Research that stands alone will have a small impact. Meanwhile, research that is a part of a large research project will have a bigger impact. So, try to find a large research project that you can join. Take a look at the environment or people around you and think about what can be better from the current situations or conditions. Also, doing a literature review may help you to know the gap in your field of interest, and get ideas for a specific research question. Once you find the idea for your research, formulate your research question. Research questions are highly important. It should be new and SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time bound). Also, it is important to write the research interest into Research Question, Hypothesis, and Aim to guide the research.
Finally, Pak Jan discussed the structure of manuscripts and research methodologies in the third part of the series. The structure of a manuscript started with Introduction, it likes funnel and has a research question at the end. Also, introduction consisted of the reason why we need to do research on the topic or the gap of the existing studies. Next, defining our methods in research is also important. This is because the method that we use to study something should be able to be replicated. So, other scientists can clarify whether or not the results of the research is confirmed.
In choosing the right method for your research, you can first try to research the previous studies’ method sections. If you find a study with a good method, you use it for your method. Also, you can develop a new method and test it. Otherwise, you can the several experts and conclude their opinions. The method section consisted of four parts: design, sample, procedure, measure, statistic, and ethic. The final part of the series will be held on Tuesday, April 27 at the same time.