Here you list citation information for each source you used (i.e., author names, date of publication, title of paper/chapter, title of journal/book, and publisher name and location).
The list of references can be in alphabetical order (author–date style of citation) or in the order in which the sources are presented in the paper (numbered citations).
Follow your style guide; if no guidelines are provided, choose a citation format and be consistent.
FORMATTING TIPS: In this optional section, you can present nonessential information that further clarifies a point without burdening the body of the paper.
Report new developments in the field, and state how your research fills gaps in the existing research.
Focus on the specific problem you are addressing, along with its possible solutions, and outline the limitations of your study.
While it's true that you'll eventually need to tailor your research for your target journal, which will provide specific author guidelines for formatting the paper (see, for example, author guidelines for publications by Elsevier, PLOS ONE, and m Bio), there are some formatting rules that are useful to know for your initial draft.
This article will explore some of the formatting rules that apply to all scientific writing, helping you to follow the correct order of sections (IMRa D), understand the requirements of each section, find resources for standard terminology and units of measurement, and prepare your scientific paper for publication.
The four main elements of a scientific paper can be represented by the acronym IMRa D: introduction, methods, results, and discussion.
Other sections, along with a suggested length,* are listed in the table below. Now, let's go through the main sections you might have to prepare to format your paper.