Tips & Tricks

Difficulties with writing your bachelor or master thesis? At this page you will find some tips and tricks that will help you with the writing

Guidelines & templates



The Cochrane collaboration advises to use specific guidelines and checklists per evidence-based-medicine domain for writing your manuscript:

For more information and to download the guidelines and checklists, please visit:

Manuscript sections

Title page

  • Brief title (including design of study)
  • Authors + degree + affiliations
  • Name + address of corresponding author


  • +- 300 words (journal guidelines ranges from max. 250 – 500 words)
  • Brief formulation of the research aim and methods used, point-by-point summary of results and conclusion


  • Use the same sections as your manuscript, thus: introduction, methods, results and conclusion


Use the following structure:

  1. Start with announcing your topic
  2. Include a brief literature review: what is known?
  3. Use the literature to focus on your contribution: what is unknown?
  4. Elaborate on rationale of your paper
  5. State your research aim


Use a similar published article as example, but avoid plagiarism!

Use the following structure:

  1. Study design
  2. Methods used
  3. Ethics
  4. Statistics


  • Difficulties with statistics? Look at for help on your statistical analysis
  • Always write the method section in the past tense
  • Provide enough details to make it possible for another researcher to replicate your experiment, but focus on brevity


  • Use a similar published article as example, but avoid plagiarism!
  • Only new, relevant data from your study
  • Don’t replicate data in tables / figures in the text


  • Also write the results section in the past tense
  • Focus on being concise and objective. You will have the opportunity to give your own interpretations of the results in the discussion section


Use the following structure:

  1. Statement of principal findings
  2. Strengths and weaknesses of the study
  3. Strengths and weaknesses in relation to other studies, discussing differences in results
  4. Meaning of study: possible mechanisms and implications for clinicians
  5. Unanswered questions and future research
  6. Conclusion


  • Don’t repeat the introduction
  • Avoid adding new information to this section, but if necessary, only in relation to other studies (with references)


Use a reference manager as Endnote or Mendeley

Other tips & tricks

  • Take a look at the AMSj Author Guidelines for more Tips & Tricks while writing your manuscript
    • If you are a medical student of the Amsterdam UMC, location AMC; the website of the library provides many more tips and tricks for research and writing:
    • If you are a medical student of Amsterdam UMC, location VUmc, you can have a look at the online course environment:
  • Start your writing with the method and results section. It is easier to write the introduction and results after you wrote the method and results sections.
  • Difficulties with focusing your manuscript? Start with writing the abstract to get a clear aim and focus of your article. Don’t forget to revise your abstract at the end after finishing the rest of the manuscript.
  • Keep sentences short and simple
  • Make the meaning of all sentences clear
  • Write in the third person
  • Use an ‘active’ rather than a ‘passive’ voice
  • Consistent tense
  • Punctuate accurately