Writing in Medicine

Resources for International Students


There are loads of books on medical writing, so here are just a few:

Garrard, J. (2007). Health sciences literature review made easy: The matrix method. Sudbury, MA: Jones and Bartlett.

Goodman, N. W, & Edwards, M. B. (2006). Medical writing: A prescription for clarity (3rd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Huth, E. J. (1999). Writing and publishing in medicine (3rd ed.). Baltimore, MD: Williams and Wilkins.

Lang, T. A., & Secic, M. (Eds.) (2006). How to report statistics in medicine: Annotated guidelines for authors, editors, and reviewers (2nd ed.). Philadelphia, PA: American College of Physicians.

Lang, T. (2009). How to write, publish, and present in the health sciences: A guide for clinicians and laboratory researchers. Philadelphia, PA: American College of Physicians.

Stuart, M. (Ed.) (2007). The complete guide to medical writing. London: Pharmaceutical Press.

Taylor, R. B. (2005). A clinician’s guide to medical writing. New York: Springer.

Witte, F. (2003). Basic grammar and usage for medical communicators. Rockville, MD: American Medical Writers Association.

Zieger, M. (2000). Essentials of writing biomedical research papers (2nd ed.). McGraw-Hill. 


Writing in Medicine—Developed for Monash University college students studying nursing, medicine, and other health sciences subjects, this online module provides discussions of how to write case reports and do reflective writing.

Guide to Writing in the Health Sciences—This online journal, based at the University of Toronto, contains articles dedicated to various topics on writing in the health sciences, from grammar and punctuation issues to argument and oral presentation style.

World Association of Medical Editors’ Listserve Discussions—This webpage links to listserv conversations that journal editors had about authors, manuscript editing, and other topics. For example, you can read conversations about the appropriate use of other writers’ sentences and about how to refer to people of different races and ethnicities.

Narrative and Healing—This site, part of LitSite Alaska, provides an introduction to narrative medicine, through essays by health care professionals (see, e.g., Narrative Medicine and Why Write Personal Narratives?), stories of doctors describing their experiences as patients, and a collection of “healing narratives.”

Residency Searches and Applications—Sample CVs, personal statement tips, and other advice about residency searches from the University of California, San Francisco.

Personal Statement Samples—Examples of well-written residency personal statements from the Medical College of Wisconsin.

Resources for International Students

Graf, J. (2008). Handbook of biomedical research writing. Hanyang University Online Writing Lab. Written for Korean scientists in the biomedical sciences, this handbook covers writing journal article and clinical case reports.

McCullagh, M., & Wright, R. (2008). Good practice student’s book: Communication in English for the medical practitioner. Cambridge: CUP. (for advanced English learners)

Ribes, R., & Ros, P. R. (2006). Medical English. Springer: New York.

Quann, S., & Satin, D. (2007). Project care: Health care case studies, multimedia, and projects for practicing English. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press. (for intermediate English learners)

Talking Medicine—Interactive modules for doctors and biomedical scientists on meeting presentations, interviews, reports, case histories, and pronunciation. Note: the first five modules are free; after that you have to pay. Also, a warning: the modules may not necessarily reflect American English—they were developed by doctors and teachers in the UK, Australia, and Canada.

Medical English for Doctors and Patients—Grammar and vocabulary activities (along with answer keys) for intermediate and advanced learners of English.

This page was created by Andrea Olinger. To suggest a resource or report a broken link, email the GWC at gwc@gsa.asucla.ucla.edu.