How To Write Perfect Headings for Your Journal Article

Structural Headings and What Comes under Them in Academic Writing
The relationship between the headings an academic or scientific author uses to organise and divide his or her journal article and the material that comes under them is usually straightforward. After all, each heading serves to introduce and define the content that follows, and whether the heading or the content is created first, most authors write one in relation to the other. In some instances, however, establishing a clear and effective relationship between a heading and the material it heralds may prove challenging.
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For those who are new to writing scholarly articles, creating a heading that neatly encapsulates the complex and multifaceted material that follows can prove far more difficult than anticipated. Often an author’s first attempt at headings is effective for drafting a paper, but requires significant adjustments to reflect the content of the finished article with accuracy and precision. It is therefore important to review each heading and the content that follows very carefully as you proofread your paper, reflecting anew on exactly what the heading says and asking yourself whether it accurately and thoroughly encompasses everything that you have included in that section. It may be helpful to divide your paper further to create shorter sections with more specific headings, or it may be useful to divide sections into subsections with subheadings that more effectively specify exactly what will be found in each subsection. Remember that division of your text will serve your readers well by breaking complicated material into more digestible chunks and that white space around headings can help make the divisions more visually effective.
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Problems in the correspondence between headings and the content under them may also arise when an article is written before its author has decided on the journal in which he or she hopes to publish it or when an article written for one journal is then submitted to a different one. Academic and scientific journals often have specific guidelines regarding the sections and headings that should be included in papers considered for publication. Although the general pattern tends to be fairly similar among journals within a particular discipline when it comes to the most basic headings such as ‘Methodology’ or ‘Results,’ this is not always the case, and even the most subtle differences can necessitate some restructuring on the part of authors. Sections larger or smaller than those you already have may be required, or sections more specific or more general may be needed; you may have to add or remove main sections, and subsections may need to be incorporated or eliminated; the wording and format of headings may require slight or significant adjustments.

Whenever changes of this kind are necessary, they will be facilitated by reviewing yet again each heading and subheading along with the section or subsection it introduces to ensure that heading and content match in every case. Some rewriting and rearranging may be required, but it is far better to make whatever adjustments are necessary to present your research according to the journal’s guidelines before you submit your work than to have your article rejected altogether or receive the news that revisions will be necessary before your paper can be seriously considered.

Why Our Editing and Proofreading Services?
At we offer the highest quality journal article editing, phd thesis editing and proofreading services via our large and extremely dedicated team of academic and scientific professionals. All of our proofreaders are native speakers of English who have earned their own postgraduate degrees, and their areas of specialisation cover such a wide range of disciplines that we are able to help our international clientele with research editing to improve and perfect all kinds of academic manuscripts for successful publication. Many of the carefully trained members of our expert editing and proofreading team work predominantly on articles intended for publication in scholarly journals, applying painstaking journal editing standards to ensure that the references and formatting used in each paper are in conformity with the journal’s instructions for authors and to correct any grammar, spelling, punctuation or simple typing errors. In this way, we enable our clients to report their research in the clear and accurate ways required to impress acquisitions proofreaders and achieve publication.

Our scientific proofreading services for the authors of a wide variety of scientific journal papers are especially popular, but we also offer manuscript proofreading services and have the experience and expertise to proofread and edit manuscripts in all scholarly disciplines, as well as beyond them. We have team members who specialise in medical proofreading services, and some of our experts dedicate their time exclusively to PhD proofreading and master’s proofreading, offering research students the opportunity to improve their use of formatting and language through the most exacting PhD thesis editing and dissertation proofreading practices. Whether you are preparing a conference paper for presentation, polishing a progress report to share with colleagues, or facing the daunting task of editing and perfecting any kind of scholarly document for publication, a qualified member of our professional team can provide invaluable assistance and give you greater confidence in your written work.

If you are in the process of preparing an article for an academic or scientific journal, or planning one for the near future, you may well be interested in a new book, Guide to Journal Publication, which is available on our Tips and Advice on Publishing Research in Journals website.

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