Scientific Writing and Publishing Online Course

Get Published: Learn the Basics of Scientific Writing and Publishing

More information about the 2018 offering will be available in late September. 
Webinar Schedule: January - April 

New to writing and publishing in scientific journals? Need a refresher? We can help you! Led by ASM journals experts, the Scientific Writing and Publishing Online Course equips you with the skills you need to publish in scientific journals.

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to:

  • Craft an impactful title
  • Construct a meaningful abstract
  • Develop informative figures and tables
  • Avoid common mistakes in publishing
  • Select a journal to publish your research
  • Evaluate journal articles from a reviewer's perspective

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Program Details

The program is based upon successful ASM professional development models in which participants:

  • Attend interactive webinars presented by experts in the field
  • Complete pre- and post-webinar assignments
  • Participate in an online community of participants, mentors and facilitators

Course Participation
In order to get the most out of the course, participants are strongly encouraged to:

  • Participate in all seven 60-minute webinars
  • Complete all pre- and post-webinar assignments
  • Interact in online community
  • Provide feedback via surveys for a maximum of 24 months
  • Have a personal computer

If you complete all assignments, you will receive a certificate of completion.

Dates of Webinars and Schedule (dates below are from the 2017 course)

Webinar #1: Thursday, January 12 at 2:00 pm EST
Writing Compelling Titles and Abstracts
Presenter: Peggy Cotter, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
- Key Elements of Effective Titles and Abstracts
- Practical Tips for Crafting Compelling Titles and Abstracts

Webinar #2: Thursday, January 26 at 2:00 pm EST
Presenter: Peggy Cotter, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
- The Introduction: Its Purpose and What it Should Include
- Your Overall Research Question: How to Tell the Reader Why You Did What You Did
- Your Introduction’s Last Paragraph: Leave the Reader Hanging or Reveal the Punchline?

Webinar #3: Thursday, February 9 at 2:00 pm EST
Figures and Figure Legends
Presenter: Mary O'Riordan, University of Michigan
- Rendering Your Awesome Data: How to Craft Informative Figures and Tables
- Choosing the Right Graphical Style for Your Data
- Putting the Most Information into a Figure While Maintaining Clarity
- Choosing Fonts and Symbols: Size Matters

Webinar #4: Thursday, February 23 at 2:00 pm EST
Results and Methods
Presenter: Peggy Cotter, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
- Coordinating Figures, Figure Legends, Results and Methods: What Goes Where?
- The Results Section: What You Did, What Data You Obtained, and What Conclusions You Drew
- Letting Your Results Tell a Story

Webinar #5: Thursday, March 9 at 2:00 pm EST
Presenter: Mary O'Riordan, University of Michigan
- Getting Started: Strategies for Writing the First Paragraph
- Discussion Modules: An Approach to Writing the Bulk of the Discussion
- Discussion Do’s and Don’ts

Webinar #6: Thursday, March 23 at 2:00 pm EST
Authors are from Mars, Reviewers are from Venus
Presenter: Victor DiRita, Michigan State University
- If It Isn’t Published, You Didn’t Do It
- Planning and Writing Drafts . . . What is an Author?
- Why This Journal? Why This Editor?
- Understanding and Responding to Reviewers (AKA Making the Editor Your Ally)


Webinar #7: Thursday, April 6 at 2:00 pm EST
How to Review a Manuscript
Presenter: Victor DiRita, Michigan State University
- Criteria Used to Evaluate Manuscripts
- Why Journals Use Different Criteria
- How to be a Good Reviewer


Peggy Cotter, Ph.D.University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill 


Sponsorship and Credentials

Sponsored by the ASM Committee on Graduate and Postdoctoral Education of the ASM Education Board and Burroughs Wellcome Fund. 

Eligibility & Registration

To be eligible, you must:
  • Be a graduate student, postdoctoral scientist or early to mid-career scientist 
  • Desire to publish in ASM journals

International participants are encouraged to register!

December 1
Registration is on a first come, first serve basis


The registration form for the 2017 Scientific Writing and Publishing Online Course is now closed.

Click on REGISTER NOW and proceed with the following steps:

  • Initially, you will be asked for an e-mail address and password. If you have not logged in before, a new account will be created when you enter your e-mail address and password.
  • Upon providing the requested information, you will receive a message stating that your e-mail address is not in the system. This notice is NOT an error message.
  • To confirm that your e-mail address is correct and you would like a new record created for the e-mail address that you have provided, please select "Yes, my e-mail address is correct, CONTINUE" then "Apply Now." 

Step 1 will ask you to complete a profile.

  • Under "Additional Information" be sure to select the appropriate educational statues under "Ed/Professional." The awards or programs available to you will depend on your profile information and educational status.
  • Upon completing your profile, select "Continue Application." 

Step 2 will generate a list of programs based on the educational status in your profile. Use the dropdown menu to select the ASM Scientific Writing and Publishing Online Course.

  • Before continuing with the application, you may want to learn more about the program by selecting "Read About Program."
  • To proceed, select "Continue Application."
  • If the ASM Scientific Writing and Publishing Online Course does not show up in the drop down box, click "Update you profile" to review your education status or review the eligible criteria listed above. 

Step 3 will allow you to complete the online registration form and upload supporting documents.

  • Before logging off, be sure to select "Save and Finish Later" OR "Submit my Application."


ASM members: $175

Non-members: $225

Become an ASM member for as little as $22!

Please note, no refunds will be given. Instead, all participants who pay the registration fee will be given access to the recordings for a limited time.

Contact Us


Claire Wilson

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