National Academies Press: OpenBook

Communicating Chemistry: A Framework for Sharing Science: A Practical Evidence-Based Guide (2016)

Chapter: THE FRAMEWORK FOR EFFECTIVE CHEMISTRY COMMUNICATION

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Suggested Citation:"THE FRAMEWORK FOR EFFECTIVE CHEMISTRY COMMUNICATION." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2016. Communicating Chemistry: A Framework for Sharing Science: A Practical Evidence-Based Guide. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/23444.
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THE FRAMEWORK FOR EFFECTIVE
CHEMISTRY COMMUNICATION

The framework for the design of chemistry communication events comprises five essential elements for developing and managing such events (see Sidebar 1). The main goal of the five elements is to reinforce a focus on participants—their interests, values, and perspectives—and to encourage awareness of and reflection on the needs and resources of both the event planner(s) and the participants.

These elements are not to be interpreted as rigid sequential steps, but rather as essential pieces that work together to iteratively refine goals and help build appropriate activities. The first three steps, in particular, must be considered together. For example, setting goals and outcomes (Element 1) will be refined as you consider available resources (Element 2) and the evaluation you plan to conduct (Element 3).

Suggested Citation:"THE FRAMEWORK FOR EFFECTIVE CHEMISTRY COMMUNICATION." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2016. Communicating Chemistry: A Framework for Sharing Science: A Practical Evidence-Based Guide. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/23444.
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A growing body of evidence indicates that, increasingly, the public is engaging with science in a wide range of informal environments, which can be any setting outside of school such as community-based programs, festivals, libraries, or home. Yet undergraduate and graduate schools often don’t prepare scientists for public communication.

This practical guide is intended for any chemist – that is, any professional who works in chemistry-related activities, whether research, manufacturing or policy – who wishes to improve their informal communications with the public. At the heart of this guide is a framework, which was presented in the report Effective Chemistry Communication in Informal Environments and is based on the best available empirical evidence from the research literature on informal learning, science communication, and chemistry education. The framework consists of five elements which can be applied broadly to any science communication event in an informal setting.

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