Reasoned Writing

Welcome to Reasoned Writing.


The overall goal of Reasoned Writing is to help content-focused courses use scientific reasoning and communication for learning. The module is based on three general hypotheses:


1) Critical Understanding is central to scientific thinking and an important component of science education (Boyer et al., 1998).

2) Writing can help develop Critical Understanding skills (analysis, synthesis, and evaluation; Cavdar and Doe, 2012; Quitadamo and Kurtz, 2007).

3) Using consistent frameworks based on clear and specific elements facilitates both critical understanding and clear writing (National Academies of Science, 2000).


Reasoned Writing (RW) focuses on three specific objectives (the "Three Ss," if you will). The first (and most important) objective is STRUCTURE. Specifically, RW seeks to help writers select appropriate FRAMEWORKS to structure arguments (National Academies of Science, 2000). Straightforward, reasoned frameworks can help structure papers, paragraphs, and sentences. The second objective of RW is to encourage clear reasoning through SIMPLE presentation. Simple presentations limit the amount of information audiences must consider at any one time. The final objective of RW is to encourage scientific communicators to reason and communicate more SPECIFICALLY. Specific communication is self-contained, unambiguous, and truthful.


The companion module "A Framework for Scientific Papers" applies the general principle of using simple, specific frameworks to the particular case of writing more clearly reasoned hypothesis-driven scientific papers.


To continue, follow the links to each area or use one of the suggested approaches for navigating the module (currently implemented in a mirror site on MoodleCloud).

Reasoned Writing / A Framework for Scientific Papers

© 2018, Devin Jindrich

All rights reserved.