Keck Northeast Astronomy Consortium: guidelines for symposium paper writing
Papers due October 1st
Use the template
Students who present a talk or a poster on their research at the 2010 Symposium will be writing a short paper to be published in the proceedings of the symposium. The proceedings are sent out to more than one hundred scientists and departments.
Attention students: Beginning work on your paper before the start of classes is a very good idea. It is due, as a MS Word document, on October 1 - which is well before the symposium on November 5-6. Papers are limited to four pages for single-author papers, and six pages for two-author papers. Please use this template as a starting point for your paper, and see the notes from the editor below. Submit your paper to Prof. Tom Balonek (tbalonek -at- colgate -dot- edu). Send Prof. Balonek, by email, a copy of the working .doc version of your paper, plus a .pdf copy so that he can make sure it looks as it's supposed to when he typesets the proceedings.
From this year's proceedings editor:
You must use the style sheets for MS Word found in the template. (This template was made with an older version of Windows, and appears to work fine in the latest version. Your submission can be in either .doc or .docx format.) You must tell me at the time of submission whether the document was created on a Mac or in Windows. The appearance of the document, especially of embedded images, can depend on the system in which the image was originally created/edited. Slight differences between the systems often lead to pagination problems; we both can be spared some grief if I know in advance the correct platform, and if you use use the MS Word style sheets!
Please do not violate the margin, line spacing, and font size aspects of the MS Word "knac2000" predefined styles. In particular, do not make the text font smaller than 12-point, nor figure caption text smaller than 10-point. I will enforce these regulations; if such enforcement upsets the pagination or layout, I may be forced to make corrections less appropriate than those you can make yourselves in advance!
Please convert all figures and images to black & white, if appropriate, or grayscale. We do not print the proceedings in color, so to ensure accurate and readable rendering of your graphics, do the conversions yourselves. Don't depend on me; I don't know as well as do you how the figures and images should look. In particular, graphs that used different colors for different data series may become, upon printing in grayscale, indecipherable. You can mitigate this by varying line types (solid to dotted, etc.) and fill textures as substitutes for color differences.
Deadline: It is never too early to submit your paper, providing you've completed the work! Submission prior to October 1 is encouraged. "Submission" means a final, correctly formatted (use the style sheet!), proofread and spell-checked, electronic MS Word file plus a pdf version emailed to the editor (or hardcopy handed in at the symposium in place of the pdf).
When you email your paper to Prof. Balonek, please give it a name like smith_vassar_mac.doc, indicating your name, home institution, and computer platform (on which you wrote the paper). Again, papers must be submitted to Prof. Balonek by October 1. You can email him at tbalonek -at- colgate -dot- edu.
And to avoid common errors:
- The American spelling of "acknowledgment" has only two e's. Similarly, "judgment" has only one e.
- PowerPoint is a trademark, and is one word with a capital P in the middle as well as the one that begins it.
- "its" is the possessive and "it's" means, always, "it is."
- "alright" is not the accepted spelling of "all right."
- In SI units, unit names aren't capitalized (angstroms, kelvins, joules) while symbols for units that are named after people are capitalized (A, K, J) (with the exception of a capitalized L for "liter"; there was no French Monsieur Litre).
- Periods and commas ALWAYS go within quotation marks. Semicolons and colons go outside the quotation marks. To give a "correct example": "Wonderful," she exclaimed, "wow"; "it was a remarkably beautiful supernova."
- "eccentric" is pronounced "ek-sentric," not "ess-entric."
- "maximum" is singular; "maxima" is plural.
- In "et al.," "et" is a full word in Latin but "al." is an abbreviation (for alii), so it takes a final period.
- In your talks, although you may have spent a lot (or most) of your research time in calibrating and aligning data in IRAF or otherwise, those steps are routine and are familiar to most of your listeners, so you should minimize the time spent on discussing working with the data and maximum your discussion of the data themselves and their significance.
- "Like I said" should always be "as I said."
- Images you didn't take yourself should be credited (and not just to "APOD" but to the person or team that actually took them).
More writing standards from Prof. Jay Pasachoff.
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© copyright 2007 - 2010 David Cohen and the Keck Northeast Astronomy Consortium