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19 September 2019

Storytelling basics: The story arc

By Shane M Hanlon  All good stories have an arc.* A beginning, middle, end. The action goes up and down. The tension leads to twists and turns. So, what does the basic story arc look like? Well:   This is an arc. Or, at this point, it’s a line. The beginning of the arc is the beginning of the story. Set the scene: where are we? Who are the characters? …

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9 September 2019

Getting outside the comfort of the journalism classroom to encourage science

Newsrooms are giving more attention to climate change and writing about science, so preparing future journalists to cover difficult topics is essential.

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3 September 2019

Guided Star Gazing

I am a classroom teacher and am also a member of a local astronomy club. We do lots of public events, but my favorite events are those I put on for my students and their families.

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30 August 2019

Storytelling basics: A (mini) series

I’m a professional storyteller. It’s a weird thing to say and has been a weirder realization to come to. But, it’s true.

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14 August 2019

Wakelet – the new (& in my opinion better) Storify

I spend a lot of time on social media, specifically Twitter. It’s my job. Our @AGU_SciComm account is one of the primary ways to disseminate Sharing Science information, AGU happenings, new science in the field of scicomm, popular science pieces around policy and communication, and more. Twitter is also where I turn to for hashtag campaigns, especially those centered around AGU.

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22 July 2019

Add common names to your manuscript and talk titles

I’m walking down a row of posters at a meeting of ecologists and a see the title, Non-target effects of an organochlorine pesticide on Mentior tacomii in aquatic settings. I think, “Neat!” I studied the effects of pesticides on amphibians and reptiles as a researcher so I’m always up for learning about contamination in other systems. The problem is that I have no freaking clue what M. tacomii is. And I’m not alone.

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12 July 2019

Tuberculosis: One of the Biggest Killers of All Time

Throughout human history, it is estimated that over 1 billion people have succumbed to Tuberculosis. The deadly bacterial infection targets the immunocompromised population as well as those who have weakened their lungs through smoking.  It is believed that the first cases of tuberculosis appeared over 17,000 years ago in the wild by infecting bison. There is also a theory that puts the disease in humans around the same time. But, it is unclear whether humans or bison were the first carriers of Tuberculosis.

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11 July 2019

Transmission of Leprosy in the US via Armadillos

Repeatedly referenced throughout the Bible, leprosy, also known as Hansen’s Disease, may often be perceived by the general public to be an ancient disease that has ceased to endanger the modern world.  Much to the misfortune of people living in Africa, Brazil, India, and the Philippines, where the majority of outbreaks occur, nearly 700,000 people throughout the globe annually contract leprosy. 

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10 July 2019

Hey, farmer, farmer, put away the DDT now

Music has often been used as an outlet for activists to reach a broader audience on issues concerning politics, social issues, and environmental crises. Joni Mitchell was a prominent and very influential recording artist in the 1970’s that embodied this idea of using music to educate the public.  One of her most popular songs “Big Yellow Taxi,” called out various environmental issues like deforestation and, what stood out the most to me, the use of DDT.k

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9 July 2019

Human Rabies Mortality in India: Why Is This Still An Issue?

There are an estimated 25 million stray dogs within the country of India. These animals serve as carriers for one of the deadliest diseases in the world – one that has ravaged the country and surrounding areas within Southern Asia. This disease is rabies, and India makes up 36% of the world’s rabies deaths each year. About 30% to 60% of rabies victims within countries where the disease is endemic are children under the age of 15. Some of them don’t even know they’re infected until symptoms begin to show and it’s too late.

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