Science is best discussed down the Pub!

Science at the pub

Well, not exactly. What a science communicator should do is compose all publications for the press as though one were telling a friend down the pub. This was a major point from a talk by Rachael Keer of BBC Online News Newcastle.

She played a few news videos and we the audience discussed our opinions on them; then she gave some feedback.

The use of ‘breakthrough’ and ‘turning point’ in a video on progress in research into Alzheimer’s Disease treatments highlighted the importance of a catchy title as it inspired interest in the article although any real treatments are about ten years away, a fact wisely revealed later in the report.

The balance of opinions expressed in the video/article and the use of images and brevity (the video lasted 2.47mins) were essential to maintaining audience attention.

In the next video the simple use of analogy; ‘the brain requires …30W…, same energy as a light bulb’, and showing the scientists working in their natural habitat -the laboratory- helped drive home the message.

The final video showed a different format as it included an interview of the scientist on breakfast television. There was upbeat background music, good for us who doze off easily, and the scientist had great charisma. These coupled with his references to everyday things e.g. sleep deprived students cramming for exams, enhanced audience engagement; making his use of scientific jargon forgivable.

Well guys I hope you’ve enjoyed this blog.

Until next time, au revoir.

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