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中国科学院博士 主要从事遥感机理、定量反演、数据处理以及GIS应用研究。ArcGIS、Envi 、ERDAS、Ecognition软件、IDL语言、6S、SAIL

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科技写作时态的使用---转  

2014-04-06 15:29:23|  分类: 论文写作 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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http://blog.sciencenet.cn/home.php?mod=space&uid=306792&do=blog&quickforward=1&id=657146

I left a comment at Ren lao shi’s Blog, and received this homework assignment.

I don’t know if I can do better than his book, but let me try to add my two cents. (Why me? I am a researcher who writes papers only in English, and I am an English editor who edited about 100 research papers each year in the last three years.)

First, I am a numerical modeler. So when I am ready to write a paper, I have done most of the numerical experiments already.

1. Introduction

In the introduction, we often need to cite many publications. Our rules are:

1) use the past tense when a sentence starts with a publication;

For example: Ren et al. (2012) noted a dramatic increase in publication by Chinese authors in SCI journals during the 2000s, thanks in part to the cash reward and promote criteria set by the (Chinese) system. (Sorry, I made up this sentence, and this Ren is not any Ren lao shi at SciNet.)

Note that even though the publication is recent, I still use “noted.”

Note also that I have no authority to make you follow this rule, but from now on you should pay attention to what your colleagues do when you read their papers.

2) use the present tense for a result/fact that remains true today, even though the result/fact was obtained 100 years ago.

For example: The Gulf Stream is the most powerful western boundary current on Earth, as discovered and confirmed by sailors and scientists hundred years ago.

3) use both past and present tenses in one sentence.

If you don’t like the sentence I made up in 2), here is one from Wikipedia: European discovery of the Gulf Stream dates to the 1513 expedition of Juan Ponce de León, after which it became widely used by Spanish ships sailing from the Caribbean to Spain.[1]

2. Methdology

To describe the methods and data sets used in the paper, we use the present tense.

For example: We use the WOA (World Ocean Atlas) data as initial conditions for our model. We use satellite data to validate model’s phytoplankton field in the surface layer.

3. Results

We use the present tense to describe all our (finished) experiments. If you prefer to use the past tense, it is fine as long as you do so consistently. Do not switch from the past tense to the present tense randomly.

4) Discussion and Conclusion

We tend to use the present perfect tense, such as “We have shown,” but again one can use the past tense or the present tense. Just be consistent.

I hope this helps.

ps. You may also want to check this out:

Scientific Writing for Beginners (1)-(8)

by Zuojun Yu

http://blog.sciencenet.cn/home.php?mod=space&uid=306792&do=blog&id=432195

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