Journals are the prestigious publications that champion and highlight what's current and what's revolutionary in a particular field. For doctors, published studies on journals often influence how patients are managed. This is true for other fields so clearly, having one of your works published on a journal is a reflection on how well-made your study is. It is also a confirmation of your work's relevance to the current state of your profession. Here are a few tips in writing journal articles and submitting them for publication.
- The thesis statement. In writing a journal article, you must be able to effectively formulate a thesis statement. Usually, this would contain a population that would be tested, an intervention, the methodology, a parameter to be observed and lastly an outcome or result. The presence of these details on the problem itself ensures that you're able to more or less identify the salient points of your study. These elements also make your eventual answer to the problem statement more direct and relevant.
- Recommendations. To justify your pick for an intervention - say you wanted to test the effect of a certain drug for a disease --- you have to prove that the drug you wish to test has already had some proven effect on some other setting. You can justify this by using results of previous studies. A study that shines (and probably gets published) is a study that is well-researched. Researchers must be well aware of previous studies and recommendations to make sure that the new study will not fall to the same pitfalls as the ones that came before.
- Writing the article. After you've done your experiment and gathered your results, you may write the rest of your paper. Keep in mind that you're writing for an academic purpose so try to keep a formal tone. Be brief about it. It's not creative writing. Being straight to the point would probably earn you more brownie points and increase your chances of getting published.
- Answer the question. Make sure that your abstract and discussion answers your problem question. This makes it clear that your study actually achieved the desired objective of the entire exercise - know about the effect of a certain intervention relative to a control.
- Editing and peer approval. After writing your paper, editing it and re-reading it multiple times, you may forward your paper to a Journal group. Journals are run by organizations, foundations and clubs that have an in-house group of editors and assessors that ensure the high standards of the publications. Half the battle is knowing where to submit your work. After you've decided that you really want to take your chances, you may coordinate with your chosen journal group.
Your article is probably your chance to be known outside your personal circle in your field so you'd better make sure that your debut article will create a strong impression. Just like anything else, the secret to successfully having your study published is by putting in the work required to make it seamless and perfect. If you've done everything to make it better, all you have to do is hope.
If you don't make it, don't fret. As you learn how to improve your habits and know-how, your chances of getting it is definitely better next time around. Good luck!