Hello Kristin\n\nThank you for teaching me the basics of academic writing and editing with proper grammar. In this course, I was introduced to the scientific panel which further enriched my knowledge.
This was an amazing course that really helped me with my medical writing skills and understanding how making things clear for all audiences can help in spreading scientific knowledge across the world.
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The main instructor is a great teacher. I have particularly enjoyed the first half of the course that gives general writing tips, applicable to manuscripts as well as lay articles. I enjoyed the optional edit videos, they are very informative. The anecdotes about writers/scientists/plagiarism, etc. are also very entertaining.
The second half of the course is not always as focused on writing (e.g. interviewing/being interviewed, social media, etc.), which is ok, but not what I expected. For example, I did not find Amy Adams' videos very useful. For social media in particular, I expected to learn how to write punchy yet accurate social media posts (since this course is about writing). Instead, the video was more of an introduction to "what is social media".
The certificate provided by Stanford Online has some layout issues, I hope this can be fixed soon.
Overall I recommend this course for beginner writers, it is very useful!
By Carlos C•
I really liked this course. This is the first time someone taught me how to write effectively for different purposes. I mean, teaching these things is so valuable, but no professor I have had since high school has ever taken the time to teach this simple concepts with examples as well, such as cutting the clutter, using more verbs, using the active voice instead of the passive voice, etc. Although I started this course to just learn how to write effectively, I didn't like the last units because they consisted on how to write papers, how to submit them, etc., and I wasn't searching for that. But for everything else, excellent course and excellent professor. The course is designed to constantly test your skills and make sure you learns all the writing principles. Also, and especially for me that English is not my native language, I have seen that I can use this principles to write effectively in Spanish.
By Nedyu Y•
I was searching for slightly different course, more in direction 'Medical writing', and found by chance the one by Dr. Kristin Sainani. Still, I found the course very useful! I is structured very well and covers all topics needed for academic writing. It goes even beyond, covering particular types of written pieces like review papers, grants, letters of recommendation, and personal essays. I found units 1, 2, 3, discussing the key principles of effective writing at grammatical level, very useful, but my favourite was unit 8 about the communication to broader audiences (e.g. writing newsletter articles) including handling media relations. Great asset of the course are the live demos - really excellent job! Units 4, 5, 6, 7 were very informative, but less useful for my area of work.
A small recommendation would be to improve the sound of some few videos.
By John W•
A very nice overview of writing for the sciences -- everything from journal articles, peer reviews, letters of recommendation, to news items and press releases. Many of the main points were known to me -- remove jargon, use the active voice -- were already known to me, but it always good to be reminded. I also learned some new things -- for example, I had never heard of a "nut-graf" before!
One suggestion for improvement: the series of (three?) interviews with Kristin's colleagues were somewhat repetitive. I believe she asked the same series of questions to each of the three subjects. It would have been better, in my opinion, to focus on different topics with each one, and give each interview its own unique subject.
All in all, a very well-organized and well-taught class.