Other great resources on research skills

Here are some pointers to some other excellent resources on research skills, made by other people.

General advice

Technical writing

  • Writing and speaking with style, Benjamin Pierce and Rajeev Alur, 2023. Aimed at PhD students in computer science and other areas of science and engineering, the course is a semester-long immersion in effective technical writing and speaking.
  • Notes on presenting theses, edited by Aaron Sloman, gives useful guidelines and ideas for PhD students writing their thesis.
  • A scrutiny of the abstract, by Kenneth Landes in Geological Notes. This short note gives guidance about writing the abstract of your paper.
  • Norman Ramsey’s notes about his class on Technical Writing.
  • Mathematical Writing, by Donald E. Knuth et al. The first three sections constitute a minicourse on technical writing: only eight pages long. The time to read it will repay itself many times over.
  • How to Write Mathematics, by PR Halmos.
  • Derek Dreyer’s excellent PLMW talk “How to write papers so that people can read them” (slides here, video here) tackles exactly the same question as my talk, and also offers seven concrete suggestions — and they are interestingly different from mine!
  • The blog post by Igor Pak on ‘How to write math papers clearly’ is also useful.

Giving talks

Advice about presenting data