Tuesday, December 12, 2017

What are people doing for research summaries these days?

Been a while since I wrote one. Are people still doing the "JACS communication"-style research summaries, or have those gone the way of flip phones and parachute pants? 

9 comments:

  1. 2-3 pages in the form of a manuscript with just results, although I use one column and not the two column approach

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  2. I've seen quite a few of these lately and they have all followed the JACS-communication style (two column approach). For some reason I don't like (aesthetically) the one-column format - doesn't impact my evaluation of the work - just prefer the 2-column approach.

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  3. I never cared for the JACS/OL style approach. I use a simple one column, two page format, with a few schemes and brief discussion. One person in an 8 hr big pharma interview had brought it up and brought it with him during my interview but the 6-7 others had no knowledge of it.

    Conversely, other interviews I've had where I attempt to discuss it also had no knowledge of it. I don't know if HR is just ignoring/removing it when passing it down the interviewing ladder or perhaps the hiring manager is not passing it along.

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  4. I just went through the recruiting/hiring process for pharma. I had a 2 page summary that was written more in the format of an NIH project aims than a JACS style manuscript. It seemed to be well received, and included some minor design elements (color, formatting to catch the eye) and one or two main schemes that laid out my project in a way that didn't really require much reading.

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  5. I had a four page two column research summary. Lots of figures and stuck to an "overview" type presentation. Nearly everyone I interviewed with had it printed out and it came up a lot when people could not attend my research presentation.

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  6. Question for the audience:

    I was recently informed my job was going away and have been applying to different gigs all over the place. One of my primary concerns/issues is the research summary and talk. I find myself a decent distance from a middling grad school experience (5+) years. My experience in industry has netted me no publications or patents as yet (variety of reasons, projects come, they go, gears move only slowly). I feel like I'm left with this big, blank spot and very little to discuss about the intervening years. What's the best course of action here? I'm working with people internally to craft something, but even then it's going to necessarily be splotchy and redacted significantly.

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    Replies
    1. Great question. I don't think anyone really minds the splotchy-ness, i.e. we've all been there.

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    2. Sometimes, biologists will weave in data that other published labs with a comment about how they can't reveal their own confidential data, but this figure from another lab looks like a very solid finding. A fair amount of splotchiness can be addressed this way. (If you've watched the original House of Cards, just think of Urquhart saying "you might well think that, I couldn't possibly comment".)

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    3. You must have worked on something in those past 5 years at your current position; why not add a brief blurb about it? You can still employ R groups or change around some bonds somewhere... After 2 years, I had plenty of slides and data that I could have omitted all of my grad school work if I chose to do so.

      But I'm sure most employers will understand if you are unable to talk into extreme detail however some detail is better than none.

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