SWP Online Course Overview


Scientific Writing and Publishing (SWP) Online Course is a three-month, seven part overview of the scientific writing and publishing process intended for graduate students, postdoctoral scientists and early to mid-career scientists. The course includes a series of webinars, pre- and post-webinar assignments, structured mentoring, and a community of practice.

The program goals are to familiarize participants with the scientific writing and publishing process and provide the skills set needed to publish in scientific journals. 

Topics include condensed discussions of:

    • Titles and abstracts
    • Introduction, results, discussions, and methods sections
    • Figures and legends
    • Manuscript review process

Participants will leave the program with:

    • Tips for crafting impactful titles and constructing a meaningful abstract
    • Strategies for writing the first paragraph of the Discussion 
    • Common mistakes to avoid in publishing
    • Tips for selecting a journal, suggesting a reviewer and understanding the review process


Chair, Peggy Cotter, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill 


The program is based upon successful ASM professional development models in which participants:

    • Attend interactive webinars presented by experts in the field in order to become familiar with terms, concepts and best practices.
    • Complete pre- and post-webinar assignments, including readings, skill-building activities, and reflections designed to help participants deepen their understanding, practice emerging skills, and keep on task.
    • Participate in an online community of participants, mentors and facilitators to share readings and resources and connect participants with experts.


An eligible participant must:

    • Be an ASM member
    • Be a graduate student, postdoctoral scientist or early to mid-career scientist
    • Desire instruction in the preparation of original research articles for publication in ASM journals

To join ASM, visit www.asm.org or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Click here to view the 2017 syllabus and webinar dates

Course Participation

In order to get the most out of the course, participants are strongly encouraged to:

    • Participate in all seven 60-minute webinars
    • Complete all pre- and post-webinar assignments in a timely manner. (This preparatory work is required as it provides a foundation for enhancing one's training and providing the maximum benefits from the webinar series).
    • Participate in an online community of practice
    • Participate in surveys for a maximum of 24 months to ascertain the effectiveness of the training
    • Have a personal computer to connect to the webinars, access assignments, and participate in the program's online community

Participants who successfully complete all assignments will receive a certificate of completion.

Registration Deadline: December 1
*please note, registration is on a first come, first serve basis

Sponsorship and Credentials

The ASM Scientific Writing and Publishing Online Course is sponsored by the ASM Committee on Graduate and Post-doctoral Education of the ASM Education Board. The ASM Education Board is a recipient of the 2000 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mentoring in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Education. The Board was recognized by President Clinton for its contribution to graduate education.


The cost for the SWP Online Course is $175. Please note, no refunds will be given. Instead, all participants who pay the registration fee will be given access to the recordings for a limited time.