13: Writing for research and evaluation


Writing is not a discrete activity which happens late in the research or evaluation process. It starts at conception and continues through every stage of research and often beyond the end of the project. This chapter begins by identifying and dispelling some myths about the writing process. This is followed by a guide to the writing process including how to get started, the non-linear nature of writing, rules for plain English, example report structures and how to avoid common pitfalls. The topics of structure, plagiarism and citation are covered in detail and the difference between findings and recommendations is explained. Text editing is covered including how and when to seek external feedback and how to use this constructively. Guidance is given on how to polish writing, and this is followed by an update of the case studies followed by exercises, discussion questions and a debate topic.

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