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Biology 153 (Beaster-Jones)

Evolution & Development

Read Key Sections First

Skipping around is encouraged when reading a scholarly article:

  • begin by reading abstract
  • skim the introduction and jump to the end to read the conclusion
  • then, look at the results to view the data (graphs, charts, images, etc.)

Skimming these sections first will allow you to quickly determine if the article is relevant to your research and if you should do an in-depth reading.

Reverse Oreo Method

Scholarly articles are structured in the reverse of an Oreo, meaning that the “good stuff” is on the outside:

the Abstract, Introduction, the Discussion,and the Conclusion.

The “dry stuff” is on the inside of the article – the Methodology and the Results. A key point of the scientific method is that results must be able to be replicated to be valid, so Methodology shows exactly how the study might be reproduced, but sheds little light on the big picture, unless you are replicating the experiment. Statistical analysis in the Results are important, but is typically ust the math verifying the significance of the results.