Brief Instructions for Special Topics papers:
1. to encourage self-learning in anatomy and physiology related to your professional goals or personal interest
2. to become familiar with CCBC’s electronic journals
3. to become familiar with PubMed, the biomedical literature database of the National Library of Medicine
4. to practice and/or improve writing skills in communication concepts in biology
a) The topic must be anatomy and physiology – e.g., not epidemiology, genetics, personal dialog, or social science or health infrastructure, management, or policy. That said, you may include a sentence ot two addressing non-A&P in the introduction if you like, but then switch to A&P
b) It is preferred that the topic be relevant to you and the pursuit of knowledge in your chosen field. Please search the electronic journals for a relatively narrow topic that can be more easily addressed than a broad one. Those in specific areas should explore a paper or narrow topic in areas such as radiographic imaging, dentistry, or respiratory imaging. Otherwise, people pursuing more general areas, such as coding, might elect to explore a topic personally relevant to them.
c) Do not write about topics considered to be regular, core content in our course, i.e., don’t describe how the heart works or about the biology of the integument, or anything that is already in our textbooks. You should be investigating material beyond the scope of the course.
2. Audience: Write to a biologically-informed audience, not in the 4th-6th grade style used in the web; you are not writing to the public. You do not need to define terms that are already defined in our text; assume that the reader already knows this. Note that websites are written to 6th grade-level readers – please go to the e-journals for resource material.
3. Length: There must be a minimum of two written pages of text, single-spaced. Space occupied by any added tables, figures or lists, must be compensated for by text to achieve the equivalent of two pages (having more than two pages is okay). Titles must be same font and size (11 or 12 pt) – a bold-faced title and one line separating it from the text. Margins are to be set on normal or wider) and larger font tiles, wordy introductions, and wide margins on any side will cost you points.
4. Style: Some folks try and cut corners with large fonts, wide margins, and large sections of space accorded to the title.
a) Font size: 11 pt or 12 pt font size for text. Titles should be no more than 20 pt in size. DON’T WASTE SPACE!!!
b) Page margins: “normal” or “narrow” margins, as defined in MS Word.
c) lists are considered to be tables, not writing
d) do not use conversational (colloquial) tones or first person pronouns (you. I, me, we, us)
e) use the reference section for citing names and such. Avoid references such as “..according to Dr. Broken Legg, of
Saskatchewan University…” . This is considered to be “filler” and is distracting to the reader.
f) never use quotations unless offering the reader something that might have more than one interpretation
5. Referencing: Please attach a bibliography at the end of the paper, number each reference, and cite only those numbers in the text. e.g.,
“Bone growth shows at 12% decrease over a ten year period ”.
This sentence refers to reference number 3 (below) in the reference section following the two-page paper. The reference section is not part of the two pages. The format of the reference should be stated as follows:
Author(s). Article Title. Journal Title, Volume number, pages (year). Citations must be clearly accessible. APA style, in-text referencing of author names is both redundant and unnecessarily disruptive to good reading flow, and therefore considered here to diminish effective, written communication. The reference section would have:
3. Ichinose PU, Scratchyhead K, and IA Blockhead. Images of ice cream in the lateral ventricles. Image Science 54: 567-583 (2010)