What makes social and behavioral science newsworthy?
Journalists share their expertise.
Director of the School of Media and Public Affairs
The George Washington University
National Science Writer
The Associated Press
- Tells a bigger story
Associate Professor of Political Science
George Washington University
- Underappreciated perspective
- Not intuitive
Developmental Psychologist, Writer
Wall Street Journal
- Challenges conventional wisdom
- Sheds light on policy or current events
- Offers a human angle
Journalists and Scientists: Different Backgrounds, Different Worlds
According to journalist Susan Pinker, developmental psychologist, writer, Wall Street Journal:
Challenges Facing the Media in Reporting Science
Reporting this news in an accurate way on deadline is no easy task. Susan Pinker, science journalist; Frank Sesno, director of the George Washington University School of Media and Public Affairs and former CNN journalist; and Brian Lin of EurekAlert at AAAS share insights about the daily pressures journalists face that affect how they report science.
Susan Pinker, Developmental Psychologist, Writer
Frank Sesno, Director, School of Media and Public Affairs, The George Washington University
Brian Lin, Director for Editorial Content Strategy, EurekAlert!
The special challenges of reporting science
Science itself poses challenges for journalists as they determine what is newsworthy, investigate the accuracy of scientific claims, filter out hype, and clearly convey what the science means for their audiences. Three leading science journalists share their approaches for overcoming these challenges.
Richard Harris, Science Desk Correspondent, NPR
Seth Borenstein, Science Writer, Associated Press
Ideas for Social and Behavioral Scientists
Communicating with the Media
Brian Nosek is co-founder and executive director of the Center for Open Science, which published a report in 2015 in Science, “Estimating the Reproducibility of Psychological Science.” As the report was covered widely in the popular media, Nosek shared a set of best practices that his team used to communicate about it with the media.
Preparing to Communicate with the Media
Communicating with the Media
| The main messages of the science
Following Up after Media Coverage
Watch Brian Nosek’s full presentation
Communicating the Science
Ideas for Journalists
Asking good questions is at the heart of journalism. Participants suggest questions they ask scientists.
Is it newsworthy?
Frank Sesno shares approaches to determining newsworthy science from his book, Ask More: The Power of Questions to Open Doors, Uncover Solutions, and Spark Change
Is it good science?
“How could you be wrong?”
“What haven’t we talked about?”
“How do you know in your field, what is a good, trustworthy paper?”
How does a single study connect to others?
John Sides of The Monkey Cage and Maria Balinska of The Conversation describe how they approach putting single studies in the context of the body of work on a topic.
American Educational Research Association, American Psychological Association, Institute for Social Science Research, and SAGE Publishing