Thanks to Mark Goetz!
I do not use PowerPoint in class. PowerPoint is virtually a necessity for scientific talks, but I think they often hurt classroom lectures. They lock me into a particular order, and they tend to make me go through material too fast. My handwriting is poor, but I write in class so I don’t go too … read more
Previously, I provided three items of essential reading. Here are other books that I highly recommend for improving your scientific communication skills. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED READING ON WRITING Cook (1986): Line by Line: How to Edit Your Own Writing delivers a thorough accounting of the editing process. The book deals mainly with sentence-level revisions and contains … read more
From the NERC booklet Communicating Your Ideas. More about this booklet here.
On the recommendation of Prof. David Karoly, I bought Randy Olson’s Don’t Be Such a Scientist: Talking Substance in an Age of Style. I highly recommend this book for those who want to make their science more accessible to others (both scientists and nonscientists). Olson breaks down his observations of how best to communicate to … read more
This 18-minute video called “Talking Science: The Elusive Art of the Science Talk” was produced by the USC Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies and the USC Annenberg School for Communication. It was made by Randy Olsen, author of Don’t Be Such a Scientist: Talking Substance in an Age of Style. I was informed of Olsen’s … read more
If you want to make two resolutions for 2010, here’s what I recommend. One for scientific presentations: I will not start my talks with an “Outline” slide. Instead, I will motivate my talk with something to grab the attention of the audience and get them interested in what I am about to say. Read more … read more
I asked my friends and colleagues for quotations that I could put in the book. I had way more than I could use. Here is one that was not used. This might be controversial, but I never start a talk with an outline of what I’m going to talk about. If it’s a short talk … read more
Serifs are those little vertical lines and flourishes at the ends of letters (like the vertical lines at the ends of the capital S or the horizontal line at the bottom of the lower-case r). Use sans serif fonts (Helvetica, Arial) because the near-uniform width of the strokes keeps the font readable when reduced in … read more
This is an excerpt from the For Further Reading section at the end of the book.