This Post has been Guest Blogged by Jan Modric
What is an Educational Article?
Education is a process of training (from Lat. educare = to bring up, to rear, to train). Educational article is a piece of writing which helps readers to be able to deal with a certain subject in practice.
What’s Purpose of This Article?
This article shows how to write a good on-line educational article, using examples of two health articles. Article is dedicated to on-line writing beginners.
What an Educational Article Must Contain?
Educational article must contain:
- Introduction with short explanation, what the article will cover and for whom it is intended (e.g. for professionals, elementary school students, patients, etc.)
- Index with sub-topics listed.
- Subtitles which cover sub-topics in the order as readers might expect them.
- Content, with explaination of mechanisms, translation of foreign words or technical terms, instructions about “how to use”.
- Final word or “conclusion”, which emphasizes the main point of the topic.
- References with links to sources, where explicit claims can be checked.
How to Write a Good Educational Article?
Who can Write What?
First, a writer has to be familiar with the chosen field. For example, to write a good article about diabetes, writer has to be either a medical professional dealing with diabetes, or a diabetic patient (or his relative) who has been collecting info about diabetes during a longer period of time. Even a well educated person will hardly write an useful article about diabetes, if he/she has not the feeling what diabetic patients has to deal with in his real life.
Which Topic to Chose?
It is good to write about something what:
- You, as a writer, are interested in.
- Is new.
- Is popular. You can use a keyword suggestion tool like tools.seobook.com/keyword-tools/seobook/ to see what on-line searchers are actually searching for. If you can type in “folliculitis”, you can see, that over 2,200 people search for “folliculitis pictures” in Google every day. So, if you write a good article with folliculitis pictures you can expect a lot of readers.
It is not enough that you only have an idea, how something works, but you have to have proofs for your claims. So, it is expected, that you list sources on the bottom of the article, which support your claims. References themselves have to be confirmed by other professionals from the field. The best reference in medical word is a clinical trial, which confirms certain hypothesis.
Concise vs Comprehensive Article
Concise article deals with a chosen topic in a great detail from all expected viewpoints. Comprehensive article should cover the whole topic, list all main subtopics, and link to more concise articles. Example: Article about causes of diarrhea lists all important causes of diarrhea and then links to articles which describe specific disorders causing diarrhea in detail.
Article should be long enough to cover the topic, and short enough not to distract the reader because of a lot of unnecessary details. There’s no specific rule about “how many words” to use.
Why to Write Anyway?
Consider both your interests and actual readers’ needs when you write. Good article should bring joy, and maybe money to the writer, and actual help to the reader.
Sites with General Educational Articles
Professional Educational Articles about any topic on About.com reveal authors background and are reviewed by professionals from the related field. Articles with Descriptions of General Issues on Wikipedia.org are arranged as encyclopedia, and can be written or edited by anyone. The site is being constantly reviewed by Wikipedia staff. Elementary/High School Level Educational Articles on Howstuffworks.com mainly explain technologic, natural processes, history events and such.
Health Educational Articles
Yahoo Health Educational Articles are pretty detailed, patient oriented, written by health professionals Medlineplus Health Articles are written by professionals from health institutes and provide reliable, official health info. Educational Articles for Health Professionals on Emedicine.com provide top notch treatment advice for physicians. Pubmed Medical Research articles are widely used on internet as a reference in medical world.