This chapter outlined the organizational structure of a research article, which is commonly referred to as IMRD/C. Each of those sections has specific goals and strategies that writers can use to optimize their ability to communicate research successfully. One way to envision the relationships between each of the IMRD/C sections is with the image of an hourglass.
The hourglass demonstrates the generality of the Introduction and the Discussion/Conclusion sections in contrast to the more specific nature of the middle two sections — Methods and Results. In the next four chapters, you’ll learn about each of those sections, respectively.
Each research article will contain distinct sections that tend to be rather consistent across disciplines, but could contain some individual variation within your discipline or even academic journal. The argument in an overall research article moves from being general to specific then back to more general again.