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Abstract

Scientific writing contains unique linguistic features that construe special realms of scientific knowledge, values, and beliefs. An understanding of the functionality of these features is critical to the development of literacy in science. This article describes some of the key linguistic features of scientific writing, discusses the challenges these features present to comprehension and composition of science texts in school, and argues for greater attention to the specialized language of science in teaching and learning. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Sci Ed, 89:335–347, 2005