skills

Mapping the hinterland: Data issues in open science

Ann Grand, Clare Wilkinson, Karen Bultitude, Alan F. T. Winfield

Open science is a practice in which the scientific process is shared completely and in real time. It offers the potential to support information flow, collaboration and dialogue among professional and non-professional participants. Using semi-structured interviews and case studies, this research investigated the relationship between open science and public engagement. This article concentrates on three particular areas of concern that emerged: first, how to effectively contextualise and narrate information to render it accessible, as opposed to simply available; second, concerns about data quantity and quality; and third, concerns about the skills required for effective contextualisation, mapping and interpretation of information.

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Measuring mumbo jumbo: A preliminary quantification of the use of jargon in science communication

Aviv J. Sharon, Ayelet Baram-Tsabari

Leaders of the scientific community encourage scientists to learn effective science communication, including honing the skill to discuss science with little professional jargon. However, avoiding jargon is not trivial for scientists for several reasons, and this demands special attention in teaching and evaluation. Despite this, no standard measurement for the use of scientific jargon in speech has been developed to date. Here a standard yardstick for the use of scientific jargon in spoken texts, using a computational linguistics approach, is proposed. Analyzed transcripts included academic speech, scientific TEDTalks, and communication about the discovery of a Higgs-like boson at CERN. Findings suggest that scientists use less jargon in communication with a general audience than in communication with peers, but not always less obscure jargon. These findings may lay the groundwork for evaluating the use of jargon.

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