Speaking of Physics: The Art of Science Communication
Speaking of Physics...The Art of ScienceCommunicationStephanie Chasteenhttp://sciencegeekgirl.comImages: Tom Tomorrow, Amy Snyder
Audio: David Kestenbaum & Marvin Marshak: Neutrinos
My points for today Communication is necessary in today’s careers We can’t treat our audience like they’restupid (but we can’t treat them like they’re physicists either) The data do not speak for themselves.
My non-linear path Postdoc at PhD in Physics science museumBA in Social teacher educationPsychology Postdoc in physics education researchPeace Corps freelance writing NPR intern independent business
My non-linear path Postdoc at PhD in Physics science museum teacher prepBA in Social teacher educationPsychology science education & pedigree ed.PC picture research communicationPeace Corps & writing Postdoc in physics education research Peace Corps freelance writing NPR intern independent business
The career messages... • There are great jobs in education, outreach, and writing and communication is univerally important. • Specialization can be great; but diversiﬁcation can be great too. We need synthesizers in this multidisciplinary world. • You aren’t the prisoner of initial steps towards a career choice. You don’t always need to know where you’re going; ﬁnd the warm spotmy blog has a recent post about my non-linear career path http://sciencegeekgirl.com
We need to communicate with many audiences • Our students • Other academics (across disciplines) • The public • The media Image from: shirray-langley.abbozzogallery.com/
Changing view of science communicationscientiﬁc literacy (1960-1980’s) let’s educate that ignorant public media & public scientists
the deﬁcit model science “The deﬁcit model assumes that the public are empty vessels waiting to be ﬁlled with useful information upon which they will rationally act.” Nerlich, Koteyko, and Brown, “Theory and language of climate change communication,” Wiley Interdisciplinary reviews, 1, 2010.
The current modelscience & society (present) we have the attitude problem media & public scientists image victorvoigt
How do you get your message across?What are some techniques that haveworked for you when...★ Talking to the public?★ Teaching your students?
3keep it know your keysimple audience points metaphors,make it Communication analogy,relevant tips examples build no tell a fromjargon story familiar
st m odel journali bottom line key details (data) back- groundWhat’s your No more than elevator 3 main points. speech?
What’s your bottom line?Consider: What is the main message, or“elevator speech” from:• Your work, or• A class period you recently attended
There’s more to life than accuracy “The reason you cant walk through a wall is that your atoms and the atoms in the wall interact with each other. They speak the same language”* * it’s more complicated than that understandability accuracy & interest
expert knowledge what makes experts smart?Expert knowledge is organized around big ideas.Most people don’t have that framework. So start with the familiar, and build a map.
ground the explanation in the familiarstart here... and build up to... the tough stuff. walls & people... atoms & electric charge neutrinos and of course, avoid jargon
why should people care? Audio: David Kestenbaum & John Morgan: Poincare Conjecture Image: http://www.scottberkun.com/essays/essay29.htm
there is a time for telling but not too soon!image from http://www.seniorsworldchronicle.com/2009/08/usa-professors-john-baldwin-68-and.html
So, it is important to communicate well. But we don’t just need to repeat our message louder1. We need to decide what our messages are.2. We need to make our messages accessible.3. We need to motivate... THEN educate4. This is important - and possible - for all levels of physics (and in our classes!)
More resourceshttp://www.dontbesuchascientist.com/ http://www.ucsusa.org/publications/ scientist-media-guide.html http://communicatingscience.aaas.org/
Thank you!Notes and presentation will be posted at http://blog.sciencegeekgirl.com Podcast @ http://perusersguide.org/podcasts How does this work? Maybe some physicist can tell us, using simple language and familiar metaphors? Yeah, by telling us a concise interesting and entertaining story full of substance!