Scientific Writing Showcase

The articles below have been collected by the staff of the English Writing Center. Here you will find academic writing that presents complex scientific ideas clearly and concisely in vibrant and lively English. The papers have all been published in respectable, peer-reviewed journals and are meant to provide real-world examples of the principles of good writing that we teach at the English Writing Center. We also hope that the articles will serve as an inspiration to all who want to write about science and technology with clarity and elegance.

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The effects of physical prototyping and group work on the reduction of design fixation

Robert J. Youmans
Design Studies

Expertise in Engineering Design

Nigel Cross and Anita Clayburn Cross
Research in Engineering Design

Network Fever

Mark Wigley
Grey Room

Integrities: The Salvage of Abu Simbel

Grey Room


As we wait: coping with an imperfect nomenclature for extracellular vesicles

Stephen J. Gould and Graça Raposo
Journal of Extracellular Vesicles

The optimal sampling strategy for unfamiliar prey

Thomas N. Sherratt

Peroxisomal-protein import: is it really that complex?

Stephen J. Gould and Cynthia S. Collins
Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology

Parasites, desiderata lists and the paradox of the organism

Richard Dawkins

Detection of Specific Sequences Among DNA Fragments Separated by Gel Electrophoresis

E.M. Southern
Journal of Molecular Biology

Rethinking the Theoretical Foundation of Sociobiology

David Sloan Wilson & E.O. Wilson
The Quarterly Review of Biology


Lithium hydroxide, LiOH, at elevated densities

Andreas Hermann, N. W. Ashcroft, and Roald Hoffmann
The Journal of Chemical Physics

Lithium Amide (LiNH2) under Pressure

Dasari L. V. K. Prasad, N. W. Ashcroft, and Roald Hoffmann
The Journal of Physical Chemistry

Molecular Structure of Nucleic Acids

James Watson and Francis Crick

Civil Engineering

Crusing for Parking

Donald C. Shoup
ACCESS Magazine

Turning Small Change into Big Changes

Douglas Kolozsvari and Donald Shoup
ACCESS Magazine

Computer Science

The Arrow Calculus

Sam Lindley, Philip Wadler and Jeremy Yallop
Journal of Functional Programming 

Propositions as Sessions

Philip Wadler
Journal of Functional Programming

A Practical Theory of Language-Integrated Query

James Cheney, Sam Lindley and Philip Wadler

Electrical Engineering

Method of symmetrical co-ordinates applied of the solution of polyphase networks

C. L. Fortescue
Transactions of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers

Communication in Presence of Noise

Claude E. Shannon
Proceedings of the IEEE


Social barriers to renewable energy landscapes

Martin J. Pasqualetti
Geographical Review

Living with difference: Reflections on geographies of encounter

Gill Valentine
Progress in Human Geography

Glaciers, gender, and science: A feminist glaciology framework for global environmental change research

Mark Carey, M. Jackson, Alessandro Antonello and Jaclyn Rushing
Progress in Human Geography

Integrated hydrological modeling of the North China Plain: Options for sustainable groundwater use in the alluvial plain of Mt. Taihang

Yunqiao Shu, Karen G. Villholth, Karsten H. Jensen, Simon Stisen and Yuping Lei




Dan L. Burk and Mark A. Lemley
Virginia Law Review

The Law Applicable to Secondary Liability in Intellectual Property Cases

Graeme B. Dinwoodie, Rochelle C. Dreyfuss and Annette Kur
New York University Journal of International Law and Politics


Alexander J. Kasner
Stanford Law Review


On Random and Hard-to-Describe Numbers

Charles H. Bennett
Randomness and Complexity, From Leibniz to Chaitin

Communication in the Presence of Noise

Claude E. Shannon
Proceedings of the IEEE

Management & Business

Technology Brokering and Innovation in a Product Development Firm

Andrew Hargadon and Robert I. Sutton
Administrative Science Quarterly


Jennifer Carson Marr and Dan M. Cable
Academy of Management Journal

Before You Make That Big Decision...

Daniel Kahneman, Dan Lovallo and Olivier Sibony
Harvard Business Review

Mechanical Engineering

The Rise of Graphene

A. K. Geim and K. S. Novoselov
Nature Materials

Applications - Influence of Biology on Engineering

Julian Vincent
Journal of Bionic Engineering



Road-traffic injuries: confronting disparities to address a global-health problem

Shanthi Ameratunga, Martha Hijar and Robyn Norton
The Lancet

Developmental origins of noncommunicable disease: population and public health implications

Mark Hanson and Peter Gluckman
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition


Investigating the biology of consciousness

Antonio R. Damasio
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences

Functional diversity of astrocytes in neural circuit regulation

Lucile Ben Haim and David H. Rowitch
Nature Reviews Neuroscience


The Cosmological Constant [and Discussion]

Stephen Hawking
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series A, Mathematical and Physical Sciences

Structure of the Proton

Richard P. Feynman

Black Hole Models for Active Galactic Nuclei

Martin J. Rees
Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics


Development in the measurement of subjective well-being

Daniel Kahneman and Alan B. Krueger
Journal of Economic Perspectives

Does 'Consciousness' Exist? 

William James
Journal of Philosophy, Psychology and Scientific Methods

Eavesdropping on Memory

Elizabeth F. Loftus
Annual Review of Psychology


Time, work-discipline and industrial capitalism

Edward Palmer Thompson 
Past and Present

Of rats and women: Narratives of motherhood in environmental epigenetics

Martha Kenney and Ruth Müller

Urban Growth in China: Evolution in the Role of Urban Planners

Andrew Perlstein and Leonard Ortolano
Journal of Planning Education and Research