Preparing to write an academic article

Research Question 1, Preparing to write an academic article: “The ways in which these activities are undertaken given the constraints and affordances of the computer tools and environment currently used.”

Preparing to write an academic article is an activity which requires reading source material. The writing activity is primarily for year 2.

In order to learn from an academic article to support writing an article oneself, the user must first find articles worth reading which requires evaluation (skim reading to get an overview, seeing the article in context, deep reading etc.), then the user needs to place the article somewhere to find it (such as a personal Library) when they need to refer to it again and cite it. This is followed by finding the article and citing it (though this can also be part of the initial reading).

Finding Articles

It is out of scope for us to work on finding articles. For this proejct the expectation is that the articles are made available through the ACM Digital Library in perfect form (PDF, HTML and with useful metadata).

Evaluating Articles

Once articles have been found, the user needs to be able to evaluate them against criteria of relevance, veracity and importance in the field. If the article passes muster it needs to be put somewhere for convenient access later:

Adding to Library

The user will not add every article available to them, only articles they deem relevant or important, which may still contain different levels of relevance. In our case of ACM Hypertext articles, this can mean that the user ingests all the proceedings articles to their Library but does not consider all of them core to their work.

Finding in Library

The user can find the article in the Library by explicitly referring to it by author(s) name or title (using a Find command or looking through a list/shelf) or through navigating their Library by different criteria (seeing citation connections, by date, by keyword/topic etc.


It is unclear whether the act of thinking should be considered reading or authoring, since the artefacts used during thinking can be produced by the user and would not necessarily be included in the authored work.