The European Association of Science Editors (EASE) is an international community of individuals and associations from diverse backgrounds, linguistic traditions and professional experiences in science communication and editing.

Mentor-guided Analytical Thinking: The MAT Process

Tom Lang Communications and Training International

Mentor-guided Analytical Thinking (MAT) is a method of training authors and editors in which participants take turns reading, analyzing, and revising out loud every word, phrase, concept, and punctuation mark in a sentence of a longer text. The mentor (a senior writer) questions the participant at each step about how he or she reached a given conclusion or proposed certain revisions. The mentor challenges and encourages the participant to investigate his or her thoughts about the text and offers explanations as appropriate to increase the value of the process.

Variable amounts of time. A full 40-hour week is ideal, but the process can be learned in 3 hours. The workshop is limited to 10 participants. The process must be prolonged and intense because these conditions are necessary to break down old thought processes about writing and to create new, more effective ones. The process is suitable for non-native English speakers, although those with a better command of English will get more from the workshop.