Scientific Writing at ETH Zurich

Are you writing a Bachelor’s or Master’s thesis, a doctoral thesis or any other scientific text? Every research paper involves writing a text and acquiring various skills. Related issues extend from identifying a topic, formulating a research question and structuring a paper, using scientific language, searching and managing literature and using correct citations up to the writing process and finally the publication.

Scientific writing means:

  • reading scientific texts, organising what you have read and developing your expertise in the subject matter
  • using the act of writing to consolidate your ideas and thus gaining and formulating new scientific knowledge
  • engaging with the writing process and reader-orientated writing and thus improving your writing skills

This website

  • helps you to quickly find the right resources and points of contact at ETH Zurich
  • shows you how to find resources for your own subject
  • gives you information on which interdisciplinary information can be found within the ETH Zurich resources
  • gives you an initial overview of the ETH Library offers relating to scientific writing

Subject-specific resources

Please check in the Course Catalogue and on Moodle whether your course or department offers a guideline or lectures on scientific writing.

Interdisciplinary resources for students and doctoral students

Specialist offices, courses and information

Several steps are required to get from the definition of your research topic to a finished scientific text, all while observing the conventions of your discipline. Points of contact, courses and workshops, as well as references to further information that will help you resolve questions and build your skills, can be found here:

During the closure due to the COVID-19 protection measures, please check on the individual providers’ websites whether and in what form the events will take place.

Scientific writing, writing methods, writing process, types of texts, scientific language, scientific English

Finding a topic and research question, preparing a proposal and outline, planning the research paper

  • Services are currently being developed

Searching literature, collecting information and data, evaluating sources and metadata and using them correctly

Managing literature

Reading scientific texts, reading techniques

Services are currently being developed

Techniques for working with archives and dealing with archival sources

Writing, excerpting, paraphrasing

Revising text, gathering feedback

  • Services are currently being developed

Spelling, grammar, proofreading, translation, layout

Citing, referencing, creating a bibliography

Avoiding plagiarism, using good scientific practice

Image rights, image licences


Communicating, presenting

Career planning, creating a letter of application

Writing advice

During writing advice sessions, you will receive personal feedback on your text and advice tailored to your individual needs. Starting in the autumn semester 2020, the Language Center of UZH and ETH Zurich will offer writing advice sessions (external link).

Resources for teaching and scientific staff

In addition, the following courses and information are available to teaching and scientific staff:

Tipps & Tools

Please find literature on the following topics in the ETH Library Search Portal:

ETH Library is constantly expanding its services for scientific writing.
Are you involved in scientific writing at ETH Zurich and in any other related topics mentioned or still missing on this webpage? If so, we would appreciate it if you contact us to improve and expand the information on this webpage.