Science Article

Project Goal: To write a brief summary of your research for a public audience

Procedure:

1. Think about the public audience media we are considering this semester. How are public audience formats different from peer-reviewed journal formats? How do authors make their presentations professional yet interesting to public audiences? Review your NY Times/USA Today worksheets for perspectives and ideas.

2. Look at your research paper for Project 5. The introduction and conclusion will be of most use in forming your science article. If you include a graphic (optional), you will probably want to alter it to make it more interesting to a public audience. You can be creative about choosing a graphic here – perhaps a relevant photograph or clip art would add spice to your article.

3. You’ll be condensing your work into one page of text (with an extra page stapled on if you attach an illustration). Pick out the main points of your work, and list them. Then turn the list into a paragraph or two. Note: you need not put Project 6 in your 2-pocket folder – just turn in a single sheet of paper with your name at the top or as a by-line.

4. You need to have an eye-catching opening sentence and a headline that will make your reader want to read on. Look at some science articles from the popular media. What do the opening paragraphs have in common? You want to be interesting without being cute or glitzy. Remember the “gee-whiz” factor for public audiences.

5. Writing an effective concluding sentence is difficult, which is why many articles tend to end abruptly. See what you can come up with. Your work may lend itself to a punchy conclusion; if not, maybe ideas for future research would be a good way to end.

6. Throughout this project, remember your audience! You are writing for someone with a high school education and a sixth-grade reading level. Don’t use jargon unless you define your term. Keep the piece simple and effective.

7. As always, review your notes from class and your textbook (Chapter 7) as you do the project.

Criteria for evaluation

  • Creativity
  • Evidence of following assignment.