Making adjustments in how you use identifiers and other linguistic categories can improve the clarity of your writing and minimize the likelihood of offending your readers. When reviewing scientific literature, readers should assess whether the research methods preclude generalization of the study's findings to other patient populations. A thorough understanding of bias and how it affects study results is essential for the practice of evidence-based medicine. Why should we use this kind of language? My reading, pet, and cute-kid preferences are my own business—unless they influence how I treat others. Your writing will be a great deal more credible with facts that are researched instead of generalizations. News is only the statement of facts and devoid of opinions. Do you know if the letter carrier has come yet? Here are a few examples of biased sentences that would need to be corrected: Biased Example: Only immoral voters support politicians who agree with the death penalty.
Not all women are stay-at-home housewives and not all men are the breadwinners of the family. What is gender inclusive language? Unfortunately, bias can easily creep into our writing and it is important to search for bias when proofreading. Bias from misclassification of exposure or outcome Misclassification of exposure can occur if the exposure itself is poorly defined or if proxies of exposure are utilized. For example, this might occur in a study evaluating efficacy of becaplermin Regranex, Systagenix Wound Management versus saline dressings for management of diabetic foot ulcers. This gives additional credibility to your paper. Avoiding Gender Bias Gender bias in language , or sexist language, is language that stereotypes or demeans an individual or individuals because of their gender. Every person I talked to said he or she could come to the company party.
Publication manual of the American Psychological Association 6th ed. There is no reference to gender. But: Jan is going to school to become a doctor. Do not make assumptive statements about gender-roles, cultural backgrounds, religious beliefs, occupations, or socio-economic classes. This bias is more likely in non-randomized trials when patient assignment to groups is performed by medical personnel. A qualitative study of Tourette syndrome, for example, will undoubtedly include words that would otherwise be excluded from academic writing. For example, say you are writing about study habits among a group of children drawn from several middle schools.
Use parallel racial and ethnic identity terms. Bias can cause estimates of association to be either larger or smaller than the true association. As a service to our customers we are providing this early version of the manuscript. Report the facts about a group of people, not opinions. But the English language—which we learn from others, of course—has been around for a long time. Because of all this civil rights activity happening close to home and a homework assignment on non-biased language in my editing class , I became conscious of a part of my life where I am often unaware of my own unintentional biases: my writing. But: I'm sorry; I must not have understood what you said.
The reason we want to avoid biased language in writing is because we risk losing the respect of readers and it damages our credibility. To encourage more civility in political discourse, avoid the emotionally-charged language that is often prevalent in politics. Consider, for example, that black and African American are preferred terms; Native American is preferred to American Indian; Asian is preferred to Oriental. This, in turn, produces bad instrument measurements. You would be surprised how often your opinions or beliefs sneak in, even when you know what to avoid writing. This statement is less biased because it presents a more objective view of journalists and their ability and desire to report honest, factual stories.
Channeling bias is commonly seen in pharmaceutical trials comparing old and new drugs to one another. By in Academic writing and research is becoming an increasingly globalized practice, and because of the Internet, journals are able to quickly and easily accept papers and studies from researchers around the world. I am not a man, but I belong to the race of mankind. Write: Each alumnus or alumna gets a vote. Bias does not just have negative implications; writers who are too sympathetic are also displaying bias. As a creative writing instructor, bias could mean favoring students who prefer literary fiction and giving lower grades to chick lit or sci-fi fans.
Not: Jan is going to school to become a lady doctor. Body types in men or women. Selection bias Selection bias may occur during identification of the study population. Sensitivity and an understanding of your target audience are the rules-of-thumb here, it seems to me. This can inflate the observed variance seen with statistical analysis, making a statistically significant result less likely. If the operation in question has a steep learning curve, cluster stratification may make generalization of study results to the everyday plastic surgeon difficult.
When writing, avoid using offensive terms when referring to an individual or group of people. The alternative pronoun most commonly used is they, often referred to as singular they. What struck me most about your example, is not so much the relative popularity of mankind, humankind and humanity, but the preciptious fall in the use of any and all of them. Why do people use different ones? All of the tutors at the Miller Writing Center would be happy to help you avoid bias in your writing, so come see us! The goal of most academic writing is to present information without personal opinion or bias. Conclusion Bias can occur in the planning, data collection, analysis, and publication phases of research. Most though not all are men. Do not use condescending or derogatory terms when referring to anyone or any group of people.