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A Survey of the Course: 'How to Successfully Write a Scientific Article'.

BACKGROUND: The aim of the present survey was to analyze the knowledge and skills in medical paper writing of physicians who attended the course "how to write successfully a scientific paper."

METHODS: A blind survey was used to analyze participants' knowledge on the topic of the course "how to write successfully a scientific paper." Before starting the workshop, participants anonymously filled out the input questionnaire containing 12 preliminary data questions. The three-hour course included a lecture on the steps of creating and writing a scientific article with examples. At the end, all participants anonymously completed the exit questionnaire consisting of 18 questions. Differences and associations between the collected data were analyzed using appropriate statistical tests.

RESULTS: The survey included 22 participants, most of whom were women (16, 72.7%). The participants' educational level was proportional to their age. 12 of the participants had an intermediate level, while the others reported higher English proficiency. Half of the participants had never published an article. A significant difference was observed between English level and being the first author of an article published in a scientific journal (p = 0.044). Before class, only 13.6% of participants knew that guidelines are mandatory for making clinical decisions according to evidence- based medicine. There was a significant positive correlation between sex and current affiliation (p = 0.038). A negative correlation was observed between sex and article publication (p = 0.037). A positive correlation was observed between English level and current affiliation (p = 0.020). There was a negative correlation observed between previous sources of learning scientific article writing and having already published an article (p = 0.025). A positive correlation was found between reading an article and publishing it (p = 0.046). Statistical analysis showed a significant difference between reading frequency, number of published articles, being the first author, and knowing the title of a scientific article (p = 0.036, p = 0.027, and p = 0.030, respectively).

CONCLUSION: The results of the questionnaires revealed discrepancies in prior research engagement and understanding of scientific concepts and rules. This survey highlights the importance of the course "how to successfully write a scientific article" in improving participants' knowledge of scientific work and the process of creating an article for submission to medical journals.

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