Abbreviating Confusion

When taking notes, writing reports, and communicating with other researchers, avoid abbreviations wherever possible–especially “homemade” ones that you have dreamed up for your own convenience. That shortened version may make perfect sense to you, but it may not make sense to someone else. And even you, when reviewing your own notes years later, may have no idea what “HCDB” stands for.

 Sometimes abbreviations can be figured out from context, but not always. You don’t want to be guessing and don’t to make research more confusing than it already sometimes can be.