Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard

Journal Article: Methods

Criteria for success.

A successful Methods section:

Compare Authentic Annotated Examples for Methods and Results . Note the correspondence of subheadings between the two sections.

Identify Your Purpose

The purpose of a Methods section is to describe how the questions/knowledge gap posed in the Introduction were answered in the Results section. Not all readers will be interested in this information. For those who are, the Methods section has two purposes:

1. Allow readers to judge whether the results and conclusions of the study are valid.

The interpretation of your results depends on the methods you used to obtain them. A reader who is skeptical of your results will read your Methods section to see if they can be trusted. They’ll want to know that you chose the most appropriate methods and performed the necessary controls. Without this content, skeptical readers might think your data and any conclusions drawn from them are unreliable.

2. Allow readers to repeat the study.

For readers interested in replicating your study, the Methods section should provide enough information for them to obtain the same or similar results.

Analyze your audience

Typically, only readers in your field will want to replicate your study or have the knowledge to assess your methodology. More general audiences will read the Introduction and then proceed straight to the Results. You can therefore assume that people reading your Methods understand methodologies that are frequently used in your field. To gauge the level of detail necessary for a given method, you can look at articles previously published in your target journal.

If your paper is designed to appeal to experts in more than one field, you still need to write your Methods for a single set of experts. For example, say you applied a novel computational approach to gain new insight into a well-characterized biological system. Is your goal to get to show biologists the value of your computational tool or to show computational scientists how they can help study biology? In the former case, assume less computational expertise: provide more extensive explanations for how methods work and why they were chosen.

State the reasons for choosing your methodology

A reader looking to assess your methodology will read your Methods section to judge your experimental design. When describing your approach, place more emphasis on how you applied a method rather than on how you performed the method. For example, you don’t need to explain how to perform a western blot, but you might want to describe why a western blot is an appropriate approach for the task at hand (and, potentially, why you didn’t use another method).

Specify the purpose of the assay “To verify that the protein product was present, a western blot was performed.”
Explain why you used a particular method “To maximize the number of gene candidates, statistical method was used, which prioritizes reducing false negative errors over reducing false positives.”
Justify why you didn’t use another method “A small, informative section of the organism’s genome was sequenced. Sequencing the entire genome would have provided more information but was prohibitively expensive.”

Use subheadings to organize content

As recommended for your Results section , use subheadings within your Methods to group related experiments and establish a logical flow. Write your Results section first, and then follow the order of Results subheadings when writing your Methods. The parallel structure will make it easy for readers to locate corresponding information in the two sections.

Subheadings for Methods and Results may not exactly correspond. Sometimes you may need multiple Methods subheadings to explain one Results subheading. Other times, one Method subheading is enough to explain multiple Result subheadings.

Provide minimal essential detail

Provide only those details necessary for a reader to replicate the experiments presented in your study; anything more is extraneous. Remember that readers use Methods to help them assess the validity of your conclusions, so specify any methodological details that might cause someone to reach a different conclusion.

You can cite papers for standard methods, but any modifications or alterations should be clearly stated. When citing methods, cite the original paper in which a method was described instead of a paper that used the method. This helps avoid chains of citations that your reader must follow to find information about the method.

Avoid “we did…” or “the authors did…”

The Methods section should focus on the experiments, not the authors. Avoid phrasing your experiments as “We/The authors did ___”, even if it requires you to write in the passive voice.

“Samples were processed with standard DNA extraction protocols.”

“We processed the samples with standard DNA extraction protocols.”

This content was adapted from from an article originally created by the  MIT Biological Engineering Communication Lab .

Resources and Annotated Examples

Annotated example 1.

Zetsche et al. , "Cpf1 is a single RNA-guided endonuclease...", Cell 2015. Compare to the annotated examples in the Results section. 2 MB

journal article methods section

  • Database Management System

Summarize journal article including section of methods and

Question: Include information: cost of building vs. purchase SQL database? what is the cost include?

Summarize journal article including section of methods and design of the following:

The evidence-based application of SQL relational database in healthcare (5 recent peer-reviewed journal articles)

How using SQL database accomplish the following:

a. Tracking patient progress (3 recent peer-reviewed journal articles)

b. Improve health program's efficiency (3 recent peer-reviewed journal articles)

c. Support decision making and planning (3 recent peer-reviewed journal articles)

d. Quality improvement (3 recent peer-reviewed journal articles)

All in APA style citation and reference.

Solution Preview :

Prepared by a verified expert, database management system: summarize journal article including section of methods and, reference no:- tgs02758415.

Now Priced at $25 (50% Discount)

Recommended (93%)

Rated (4.5/5)

Have a Question? (oR Write a Review)

   related questions in database management system.

problemwrite a memo regarding data warehouse strategy the memo should address how the system can provide information

question 1nbsp a parts file with part as hash key includes records with the following part values 2369 3760 4692 4871

a given the relational tables as followsshipshipname captain crewcrewname hometown shipname growshometown flower

assignment database design and developmentobjectivesthis assessment item relates to the unit learning outcomes numbered

introduction to data analytics and fundamentals of data analytics assignment -assignment - data exploration and

discussion 1 relational set operators please respond to the following1a relational database model allows database

assignment1open tblfacilities in datasheet view notice that the fields management facility type and manage type are

questioninclude information cost of building vs purchase sql database what is the cost includethe evidence-based

managing data in databasespurpose of the assessment - the purpose of this assignment is to develop skills in managing

make-up projectintroduction - for this assignment you are to create a database for a small bookstore according to the

Questions Asked

Active Tutors

Questions Answered

Start Excelling in your courses, Ask a tutor for help and get answers for your problems !!

 Asked Questions

Briefly describe the market and your chosen segment of the market. How will your product or service fit into the market over all, and into your chosen segment?

Explain how a diagnostic summary differs from a biopsychosocial assessment. What is the relationship between WHO, ICD, and the DSM 5-TR?

What terms did the Missouri Compromise involve? Did one side gain more from that arrangement?

If he puts down 10%, he can get a loan to pay for the clubs for 14.5% for 18 months. What is his monthly payment?

Describe the essential elements of a persona. Define the key demographic factors that are the basis of how customers are grouped and categorized.

how would you approach an opportunity for a partnership with a leading company that might allow the Haven App and One Touch 911 to be scaled rapidly to a broad.

Why is worst case scenario analysis difficult to perform? Give one example of a worst case scenario and the outcome expected.

  • DOI: 10.5539/IJEL.V9N2P15
  • Corpus ID: 187194163

How Experimental Psychologists Write the Method Sections of Journal Articles

  • Weijen Zhuang
  • Published 29 January 2019
  • International Journal of English Linguistics

Tables from this paper

table 1

18 References

Cognitive genre structures in methods sections of research articles: a corpus study..

Method sections of management research articles: A pedagogically motivated qualitative study

Results sections in sociology and organic chemistry articles: A genre analysis

Rhetorical structure of biochemistry research articles

Methods reported in ESP research articles: A comparative survey of two leading journals

Thesis and dissertation writing: an examination of published advice and actual practice

Genre Analysis: English in Academic and Research Settings

Quality Analysis of Journals in TESOL and Applied Linguistics

Syllabus design for general eap writing courses: a cognitive approach.

The discourse function of collocation in research article introductions

Related Papers

Showing 1 through 3 of 0 Related Papers


Citation Formats

Find in Google Scholar

Similar records in OSTI.GOV collections:

journal article methods section

Download the App!

Get 24/7 study help with the Numerade app for iOS and Android! Enter your email for an invite.

journal article methods section

Snapsolve any problem by taking a picture. Try it in the Numerade app?


  1. What are the steps to best summarize a research article?

    journal article methods section

  2. ️ Academic journal article example. Citing a Journal Article in APA. 2019-03-05

    journal article methods section

  3. Find Journal Articles

    journal article methods section

  4. 😍 How to write a journal article. How to Read Psychology Journal Articles. 2019-02-22

    journal article methods section

  5. Journal Article: Methods : NSE Communication Lab

    journal article methods section

  6. 6-1 Article Methods TEMPLATE (1).docx

    journal article methods section


  1. Week 11 Overview and Writing a Methods Section

  2. Dissecting Journal Articles.mp4

  3. L2V4

  4. The methods section always gets me #research

  5. No more Azadi 🇮🇳 #kashmir #shorts

  6. Differences Between Journal and Magazine


  1. Journal Article: Methods : Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard

    The purpose of a Methods section is to describe how the questions/knowledge gap posed in the Introduction were answered in the Results section. To gauge the level of detail necessary for a given method

  2. review the methods section of the journal article. how did the researchers estimate

    The researcher estimate adherence with study by measuring urine hydroxytyrosol concentrations. Low intakes of dairy products, red meats, and processed meats are also characteristics of the Mediterranean diet

  3. Solved: Summarize journal article including section of methods and, Database Management

    question include information cost of building vs purchase sql database what is the cost includesummarize journal

  4. [PDF] How Experimental Psychologists Write the Method Sections of Journal Articles

    Method sections of management research articles: A pedagogically motivated qualitative study. Methods reported in ESP research articles: A comparative survey of two leading journals



  6. SOLVED: Which of the following sections is not generally included in peer-reviewed journal

    1. Choose a section to include in your article. Write methods and results for that section. Describe the various sections of a biomedical