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13 February 2015

Video in Education and Outreach

Video is an excellent tool for conveying emotion and generating excitement. It’s got beautiful moving images, ambient sound, and music (if you dare). It’s got human connection if you talk with people on camera or see them active on screen. It’s the most visceral way to capture an audience and tell a story. It’s not the best at communicating the details of a story however. Text, well written, still does a good job at that. But if your audience is prepped and excited about a topic or in my current case, a research expedition (because they watched an interesting or compelling video), they may be more inclined to sit down and read more about it.


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5 November 2012

Jot some field notes, get printed in The New York Times

Oceanographer Jim Thomson was surprised when The New York Times accepted his pitch to blog for the newspaper from a research cruise. Next thing he knew, his writing showed up as a full-blown article in the October 16 Science Times (circulation about 1 million). I have just returned from a month at sea conducting research on wave breaking.  During the project, I wrote entries in the New York Times “Scientist at Work” blog ( …


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23 June 2010

Why I Blog: Brian Romans (Clastic Detritus)

Guest post by Brian Romans, a research geologist in the energy industry I started my blog Clastic Detritus while working on a Ph.D. in sedimentary geology at Stanford University in 2006. I launched it because I enjoy writing and sharing things I think are interesting, especially within the geosciences. In the beginning, the blog format seemed like the online equivalent of putting magazine articles on a bulletin board outside your …


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15 June 2010

Why I Blog: Jessica Ball (Magma Cum Laude)

Guest post by Jessica Ball, a PhD candidate in the Department of Geology of SUNY University at Buffalo. I love writing. I also love geology – volcanoes, especially. But writing research papers is an activity for a limited audience, and there’s only so long my friends and family will listen to me ramble on about volcanology. So what’s a girl to do? Start a blog, naturally! My first experience with …


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4 June 2010

Why I Blog: Callan Bentley (Mountain Beltway)

This guest post by Callan Bentley, an assistant professor of geology at Northern Virginia Community College, is the first of a series that will explore why Earth and space scientists blog. Here’s a blogging success story: In April, a student in my structural geology course asked me by email how bedding/cleavage relationships can help discriminate whether beds are overturned. Like many structural questions, it was best answered with a diagram, …


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