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ONPS1054 Assignment ( Hamzi)
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ONPS1054 Assignment: Review of a scientific paper.
select one (1 only!) of the following articles and write a critical review.
This is the article that you can found by GOOGle :
2. Fajardo E, Metcalf CA, Chaillet P, Aleixo L, Pannus P, Panunzi I, et al. Prospective Evaluation of Diagnostic Accuracy of Dried Blood Spots from Finger Prick Samples for Determination of HIV-1 Load with the NucliSENS Easy-Q HIV-1 Version 2.0 Assay in Malawi. J Clin Microbiol. 2014 Apr 17;52(5):1343–51.
These papers can be found and downloaded in PDF format at the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) journals website. As RMIT subscribes to ASM journals, this paper is accessible to you as an RMIT student, provided you log into the RMIT library. Students will need to find the PDF and download it themselves- learning the skills to locate and access current scientific literature is one of the learning objectives in this course.
For students who have no previous experience in this type of review, a tutorial on writing the review will be arranged during the semester.
Guidelines and marking scheme for your review
Word count: 2000 words (+/- 10%)
Submission deadline- Friday May 1, 2015 by 23:55. Submission may be in electronic or printed format.
Submit printed copies to Applied Sciences reception in Bld 223, Bundoora.
Note all assignments must be submitted to Turnitin first and the Turnitin Similarity report should be attached with the cover sheet to your assignment. A Turnitin submission link will be available on the blackboards site.
For electronic submissions you can make a screen shot of the report and append this to you your assignment. Electronic submission may be in MS Word, PDF or Pages file formats.
• Refer to the course guide for information on requests for extensions, assignments that are under or over the word limits and late submission.
Guidelines and marking scheme for your review
Word count: 2000 + or – 200 words
1. Read through the questions below that are used to assess scientific manuscripts.
2. Read the article you have chosen.
3. Write a review of the article with the following sections:
Summary and Background
Critical Review
General Requirements for assignment.
Reports in Microbiology are written in scientific format. The purpose of scientific writing is to inform the reader of the procedures and results of an experiment. The introduction section provides the background and context for the reader. The writing should be clear, logical and easy to understand. For this reason scientific writing usually follows a defined format.
The report should be word-processed. Use font 12 or higher and double space the report. Include a computer word count and usually at least one table or figure with results should be included. Pages should be numbered. Please use the Vancouver Referencing style in your report. The easiest way to do this is to use referencing software (eg. Endnote). Students can access this through the RMIT library. Please ask for advice on installing and using Endnote at the library or IT.
In a scientific report, it is important to write as clearly and precisely as possible. After writing the first draft, read the report and see if you can reduce the word count by good precise scientific writing. The word limit for any report does not include tables, figures or reference list. This word limit is for the entire report, not for each individual exercise.
Students should use their word processing software to generate a word count and record the word count on the coversheet of your assignment.
Journal Article review Guidelines
Summary of background and contents of paper (50% of marks)
Write two to three pages on the background and contents of the paper. This section should cover the introduction, materials and methods, results and discussion sections. You may either write a section under each of these sections or write an overall “summary” of the contents of the paper, provided all sections are mentioned in your report.
As this paper is written primarily for microbiologists working in medical microbiology, there may be some sections that are not explained in the detail that you need for your own understanding. In that case, go to the literature and fill in the gaps. Additional references used should be cited using the Vancouver referencing system.
Critical Review. 50% of marks
The aim of this section is to show the examiner that you have understood the purpose, need for and content of the paper.
Present a critical review of the article. The following points will be helpful in the review: It is not essential that you answer all of these questions ( not all will be directly relevant to the article you have chosen): or even that you write your review in the order set out below, but use these points as a guide and check list.
Questions to consider when critically reviewing an article:
The following guidelines are modified from guidelines for reviewers of the European Journal of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (EJMID): Permission was obtained from the journal to reproduce this information.
1. General:
• How original is this paper? For example, is it simply applying the methods used in another study to a new situation or is the idea completely novel?
• Are there any published studies on the same topic?
• What is unique about this study?
• How important is this study to medical microbiology?
• Are there any sections of the paper that are too long and could be shortened?
• Is the writing clear, simple and concise? Is there any incorrect use of bacterial names?
2. Title
• Does the title reflect the content of the paper? Is it clear and an appropriate length?
3. Abstract
• Does the abstract outline the aims of the study, main methods, results and conclusions?
4. Introduction
• Does the introduction state the research question to be addressed?
• Is sufficient background information provided for readers to understand the question?
5. Materials and methods
• Are the methods appropriate to the research question/s being addressed?
• Are the methods described in sufficient detail to be repeated by another microbiologist? Is any important information missing?
• Are there any well-known methods that are given in detail, but could be replaced by a reference?
• Have references been provided for all the methods, except new ones developed by the authors?
6. Results
• Have the authors presented only their own results in this section? Any comparison with the results of other scientists does not belong in the results section.
• Are there any results in the text that would be better presented in a table or figure?
• Is there any material presented in a table or figure that would be better presented in the text?
• Is there any repetition of results in text AND a table or figure?
7. Discussion
• Do you agree with the author’s interpretation of results?
• Have the authors clearly distinguished between their own results and the results of others?
• Are there any negative findings in the results that could be important but have not been discussed?
• Have the authors adequately discussed their results and conclusions in relation to the results of other investigators?
• Are the author’s conclusions acceptable and is there sufficient evidence for the conclusions they have drawn?
8. References
• Check that all statements in the text that require a reference are properly referenced.
• Are there any references that are less relevant to the study and could be omitted?
9. Tables and figures
• Do all tables and figures have complete legends so that they can be understood without reference to the text?
• Could any of the tables and figures be omitted or simplified?
• Comment on the design and quality of the tables and figures.

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