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Official Rules For The Final NNIN REU Report
Due Wednesday, September 4th!


NOTE #1: As you read over the following, keep in mind -- the American Chemical Society requires authors to read a 448-page publication before even submitting an article! So our instructions and requirements are pretty tame in comparison.


NOTE #2: Please understand, in no way is the NNIN REU Research Accomplishments considered a refereed or peer-reviewed journal, so reports are NOT considered "pre-published" results. If you and your PI intend to submit an article to a REAL journal, our research accomplishments and web site will not prohibit you from doing so! (And... if you do submit your research to a journal, please let us know if it is accepted.)


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Folks: Please read and follow these instructions carefully. The maximums really are the maximum. Use your "Word Count" tool! And look at last year's book to see how the rules work. Note that each report is two pages long, the columns are typically about three inches wide and the text is typically 11 point Times. Your figures especially must be legible at ONLY three inches wide -- print them out and check!

Please do not submit your report with the text in columns or formatted like last year's reports!

As noted in the NNIN REU Intern Expectations, sit down with your mentor and/or PI through-out the program to set an outline for your report. They will know what you can leave out and what you need to put in, in order to submit an accurate and compelling report of your research. For instance, most everyone has to spin resist, pattern it and get rid of it, so do not spend a lot of time and words explaining the exact process -- cover all that in a sentence or two. Instead tell us how the device worked -- or didn't, as the case may be. That is what makes your research unique and interesting.

Please stick to the 975 word, FOUR graphic maximums. If you are over and can't figure out what to cut, ask your mentor for assistance -- combining the abstract and introduction can save you hundreds of words. (BTW: The abstract in your report does not have to be the same abstract for your presentation that you submitted for the convocation.)

IMPORTANT: Your Principal Investigator MUST approve your report before you submit it to me, so hand them a first draft BEFORE you even leave your REU site. Then the two of you have time to make corrections, etc, before the deadline! When you submit your report, also forward to me any email you received from your PI, approving your report for submission.

Send your FINAL REPORT to your PI, REU Site Coordinator, AND me by the deadline! All three of us! Even though you have already sent it to your PI, send it again -- to ALL THREE of US! If you are in the iREG or iREU program, send your final report to your PI, Lynn Rathbun, and me by the deadline!

Please note that your principal investigator may request a more in-depth report, something MUCH longer than the report the NNIN is requesting, or you yourself may want to write a more detailed report. These options are fine, but are not to be confused with the NNIN request for an REU report!




!!! THERE IS A 975 WORDS MAXIMUM !!! (The word count does NOT include the summary report info, but DOES include everything else -- abstract, references, captions.)

!!! THERE IS A FOUR GRAPHICS MAXIMUM !!! (The term "graphic" includes photos, graphs, tables, and equations/formulas.)

PUT YOUR LAST NAME FIRST IN ALL EMAIL SUBJECT LINES, i.e. "Yourlastname / Final REU Report" or just paste in the name of your document, YourlastnameYourREUsite.pdf



ASU = Arizona State UniversityUCA = University of California at Santa Barbara
CNF = Cornell UniversityUCO = University of Colorado
GIT = Georgia Institute of TechnologyUMI = University of Michigan at Ann Arbor
HAR = Harvard UniversityUMN = University of Minnesota
HOW = Howard UniversityUTX = University of Texas at Austin
PSU = Pennsylvania State UniversityUWA = University of Washington
SNF = Stanford UniversityWUS = Washington University in St. Louis

If you were in the iREG or iREU program, use "iREG" or "iREU" for your site abbreviation.



Send your written report as a PDF file named "YourlastnameYourREUsite.pdf" I.E. MallisonCNF.pdf. Sending a PDF file means that your italicized words, symbols and sub/super scripts remain intact. If you cannot create a PDF, send the report as a properly named Word file (.doc or .docx) and be sure to accept all edits before you send it. Send your figures as separate JPEG files named "YourlastnameYourREUsiteFig1.jpg" etc. I.E. MallisonCNFfig1.jpg. NOTE: Figure captions must be included at the end of your written report, not in the JPEG!



Please, NO ABBREVIATIONS in the summary info. Please spell out Electrical and Computer Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, University of California, Santa Barbara, etc. It only takes you a moment to do this, but it takes me HOURS if you don't! So take pity on me, and spell things out. Thank you!

Please do not combine or forget any of these items! For instance, email addresses must be listed separately as requested. As I say above, it only takes you moments to write eight separate lines of information -- it takes me HOURS to separate them all out, if you don't.

1. NNIN REU Report Title: (Note that this may be different from your original project title)

2. NNIN REU Intern (Full Name):

3. NNIN REU Intern's Major, Home Institution (at the time you were hired into the program):

4. NNIN REU Principal Investigator(s), Dept, Institution:
          (Full Name, i.e. "Katherine" Not "Kate") (Please note that many PIs appreciate the use of their professional title, i.e., Prof. or Dr.)

5. NNIN REU Mentor(s) Dept, Institution:
          (Full Name, i.e. "Robert" Not "Bob") (Again, note that many mentors appreciate the use of their professional title, i.e., Prof. or Dr.)

6. Email Addresses for Intern, Principal Investigator, & Mentor:
          (In that order please, and enter actual email addresses; @ symbol not "at" etc.!)

7. NNIN REU Intern's Fall Semester Street Address so I can mail the research accomplishments to you: (This is NOT published of course!)

8. REPORT WORD COUNT (excluding summary info and including abstract, references, captions):

9. Report Category [please choose only ONE and delete the rest]

a. Biological Applications
b. Chemistry
d. Electronics
e. Materials
f. Mechanical Devices
g. Optics & Opto-Electronics
h. Physics & Nanostructure Physics
i. Process & Characterization
j. Societal & Ethical Issues in Nanotechnology

IMPORTANT! If your PI or mentor is a previous NNIN (or NNUN) intern, please list their year and internship site after their name -- i.e., Melanie-Claire Mallison (1997 NNUN REU at Cornell), etc...



Abstract:, Introduction:, Experimental Procedure:, Results and Conclusions:, Future Work:, Acknowledgments: (See [4] below), References: (No footnotes please, only references!!) (See [5] below)



Obviously, if your report ends up to be 980 words, just send it. Don't try to figure out which five words to cut.

IMPORTANT NOTES ON YOUR TEXT CHOICES -- A selection of proper writing styles:

A. NO abbreviations the first time! Spell out scanning electron microscopy (SEM), gallium nitride (GaN), deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), etc, the first time you use them. Then use the acronyms for the rest of the report. Think about your parent or advisor reading the report and ask yourself -- are they going to have any idea what all the acronyms and jargon mean?!? This is most especially important when you are writing about a little-known process. I mean, even I rarely spell out nanometer, since "nm" is everywhere! But not everyone is going to know what GRIN stands for or NSSP.  So spell out gradient refractive index (GRIN) or nanostructured semipolar (NSSP) and then your audience stays with you!

B. All research is a team effort, so it is inappropriate to say "I" "my" in your report -- except perhaps in your acknowledgments.

C. Since you are reporting on research that has been completed, the report must be in the past tense -- was and were -- except if you have a "Future Work" section, of course.

D. For your written report, "@" is not a word -- "at" is a word! Also, "&" is not a word -- "and" is a word! No IM abbreviations either!

E. "Utilize" is grossly over-utilized and it is really alright to use "use" or break out of the pack and use "employ"!! "We employed photolithography methods to .... "

F. "A" and "the" and commas are your friends, and do not need to be left out. If an "a" or "the" puts you over the 975 word limit, throw caution to the wind and include the "the."

G. It is proper English writing to spell out numbers ten and under, except in figure numbers and measurements. So -- you perform a process for six hours on six wafers to grow 6 microns of oxide, shown in Figure 1 (made up process!). I know -- few researchers do this properly, but they should serve as a bad example, not a good one! So spell out the five in -- We repeated our process five times. Also! When referencing .x of something (like .9 microns), always put a zero first -- 0.9 microns. Finally, it is improper to start a sentence with a number -- 1 micron of oxide was.... Sentences start with words -- One micron of oxide was...

H. Reference numbers should be bracketed -- [1] -- as opposed to superscripted. I'm sure that if you think about it, you can imagine the possibilities for confusion in a research paper where many items already include superscripted numbers -- such as 10 J/cm2 1. To clearly differentiate between actual superscripts and references, put reference numbers in brackets -- 10 J/cm2 [1]. ALSO! Do not use the bracket as a word -- e.g., "We proceeded to etch per [2]." "[2]" is not a word! Instead say, "We proceeded to etch per Mallison [2]." 

I. References MUST include the first author (at least), publication title, journal name, volume #, issue #, page #s, and publication year. If you need to lower your overall word count, you can delete the publication title, but leave all the rest! BTW, "et al." is NOT italicized. It is properly written "et al." Note the period after "al."



[1] Refrain from formatting! DO NOT USE COLUMNS! Avoid bold, styles, hypertext, indenting, tabs, etc. Place an empty paragraph between paragraphs of text, for instance, instead of indenting. KEEP IT SIMPLE.

[2] Do not refer to the placement of a figure in your paper or caption, i.e. "In Figure 3 below, we see..." Just say, "In Figure 3, we see..." The actual page layout I use may not allow figures to be placed where you would like them to be, however I will try to put them as close to the text where they are mentioned. So mention the figure, just not where to find it.

[3] Send captions at the end of your report as TEXT in the report Word document (which you will then send to me as a PDF) -- do not make captions part of the photo files. Captions should be short, ~ 10-20 words each. Critical information on the figure should be in the report, and therefore does not need to be repeated in the caption.

[4] For your "Acknowledgements:" typically, researchers thank their PI, mentor, research group members and site coordinators / staff for their assistance, and both the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network Research Experience for Undergraduates Program (or iREG or iREU) and the National Science Foundation for funding. Of course, you can thank whomever you want, but I will go thru all reports and make sure that the National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network Research Experience for Undergraduates Program is thanked! (Or iREG or iREU)

[5] In general, references should read: Author Last Name, First Initial; "Title"; Journal, Volume, Pages (Year). Also, the first reference you refer to should be [1], and the second reference you refer to should be [2]. This seems obvious, but I often get papers where the very first time there is a reference, it is [2], which will make the reader think they've missed a reference somewhere. So put the reference numbers in order, [1] first.

[6] Similarly, graphics should start with Figure 1 and travel numerically thru to Figure 4!



Remember from the REU Intern Expectations:

It is CRITICAL that you learn how to save SEM and AFM images at the HIGHEST DPI / Contrast possible! (Assuming you are taking SEM and AFM images as part of your research, of course.) ASK YOUR MENTOR HOW!!!

[1] It is great practice to figure out NOW how to deal with jpeg files, gathering and storing the original SEMs, AFMs, etc, you'll take over the summer. You may need to learn how to use Photoshop, for resolution and contrast corrections. And just about every program out there has a "Save As" option that includes jpeg. As you continue in research, learning to work with AFMs, SEMs and Photoshop will stand you in good stead forever!

[2] Send your four figures to me as jpegs. Name the files: "YourlastnameYourREUSiteFig1.jpg" etc.

[3] Please keep in mind that formulas count as graphics. Send them as jpegs also!

[4] Four graphics maximum. DO NOT put six photos in a figure and call that one graphic. By the time such an item is resized for the book, it is almost completely incomprehensible. ONE graphic per figure! (Process outlines and small inserts may work in one graphic, but print them out at three inches wide and see if you can read them without a magnifying glass!)

[5] Send your images any resolution, width or height you want (but try to keep the file under 1MB). I'll resize them to fit the formatting requirements of the book. Better to send me a 400 DPI image than a 200 DPI image!

[6] If you used Excel for your graphs, PLEASE send the original Excel file, instead of the jpeg. All text in graphs should be LARGE (at least 18 point) and BOLD, and lines should be THICK (at least 2 pt). Similarly, if you used PowerPoint to create your graphic, then please send me the original PowerPoint file. These can be obscenely large files, so save the pertinent slide(s) ONLY, and send them named "YourlastnameYourREUSiteFigures.ppt"

[7] Just so you know -- All graphs and photos will be printed in greyscale. So if color is critical to the understanding of your diagram, I'm sorry -- but it won't be understood! Rework graphs to include markers on the lines. If you refer to colors in your graph description / caption, refer to the marker instead.


Finally, a Few Words on "Principal"

Principle: 1 a : a comprehensive and fundamental law, doctrine, or assumption b (1) : a rule or code of conduct (2) : habitual devotion to right principles (a man of principle) c : the laws or facts of nature underlying the working of an artificial device

Principal: 1 : most important, consequential, or influential : chief (the principal ingredient) or (the region's principal city)

BUT MOST IMPORTANT -- Principal Investigator, as named and defined by the National Science Foundation!

So you worked for a Principal Investigator (the number one person in your research group, and likely funded by NSF) -- NOT a principle investigator (a person with scruples). I mean, your PI may have scruples too, but that is not their title apropos of the final report!


PLEASE: Read carefully and do not "forget" any of these rules. It is much easier for you to gather the information now -- and spell out all your acronyms -- than for me to fix it all later. Thank you !!





Melanie-Claire Mallison
NNIN REU Program Assistant
250 Duffield Hall, CNF, Ithaca NY 14853-2700
Phone: 607-254-4858
Fax: 607-255-8601


PS: Once the 2013 NNIN REU Research Accomplishments are complete, here is how you cite the publication for graduate school applications and etc: YourLastName, YourFirstName. "Your report title as published"; 2013 NNIN REU Research Accomplishments, your page #s, http://www.nnin.org/nnin_2013reu.html, November 2013.


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