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How to adapt scientific writing for Blogs

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How to adapt scientific writing for Blogs

Blog posts are short, easy reads usually intended for non-specialist audiences. Their purpose is to inform readers about a particular subject in a bite-sized format, and are often used to promote a longer publication, to give an overall flavour of the piece or to simply educate the general public.

Because of their short format, it can be a challenge to distil the main essence of a large topic into only a few hundred words, so here are some tips on how to break down this task and what to look out for.

Have a clear message

The nature of a blog post is such that, realistically, only one or two concise messages can be communicated, so make sure your messaging is clear. If you’re working from a paper you’ve read or written, identify its key takeaway, and boil it down to cause, effect and impact: what is happening, why is it happening and why does it matter?

It is also helpful to relate these points to the real world. This can be a challenge for basic scientific discoveries, but will help the reader relate to the topic better. Maybe a newly identified biological process helps our understanding of a range of diseases or contributes to drug discovery – this is what truly matters and should be the focus of your piece.

Use accessible language

While jargon has its place in writing, this is not the place for it. Maximise your readership and engagement by using simple, easily understood language. If you’re struggling to replace jargon with more widely used words, go back to thinking about what you’re trying to communicate to your audience and consider whether your message needs to be simplified. Remember, you’re not writing a paper, so you don’t require extensive review and minute detail.

Be engaging

It isn’t enough to just use exciting language and descriptive adjectives to be engaging. Instead, engage your audience by ensuring they are invested in what you are writing about. To do this, it comes back down to one of the most important rules of writing, which is to know and understand your audience. What do they care about?

Your title should grab your reader’s attention. A title you might use for a paper may not be an appropriate choice for a blog post. For example, a title like “Protein X affects the Y signalling cascade through activation of Z” is very descriptive, but not engaging. Focus on the impact of the discovery, for example: “A recent discovery sheds light on mechanisms behind disease”. By keeping your blog post less detailed and more focussed on impact, your reader will be more invested in the content and be excited to learn more.


It is essential to know who it is you’re writing for. Focus on the “so what?” aspect of the subject, and less on the “how” and “why”, and make sure your language is clear, simple, and concise.


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