Scientific Radio and Podcasting Workshop

On May 24th, 2014, York Universe hosts Lianne Manzer and Jesse Rogerson travelled to Montreal to present at the Genomes To/Aux Biomes Special Workshop on Science Communication. It was a half day workshop prior to the beginning of the Genomes To/Aux Biomes conference (a biology conference). With years of experience as radio hosts on York Universe, Lianne and Jesse were invited to create a hands on workshop that teaches the development of scientific podcasts for the attendees of the biology conference. Here is the title slide to the presentation:

The title slide to the podcasting workshop.

The title slide to the podcasting workshop. Note the dropbox link. By following that link (click here), you can access some of the resources Lianne and Jesse used during the workshop.

The workshop was designed in three parts:
1. A formal presentation by Lianne and Jesse
2. Building a script, recording your voice
3. Editing with Audacity.
The first part was designed to give the participants some insight into how they should be thinking when building a podcast, i.e., researching, writing a script, story telling, documentation, communication with listeners. The second and third parts were designed to get the participants to actually attempt to build their own recording and edit it in the workshop.

Lianne and Jesse laughing at the front of the room while the attendees record their podcasts.

Lianne and Jesse laughing at the front of the room while the attendees record their podcasts.

Jesse helping an attendee work with Audacity.

Jesse helping an attendee work with Audacity.

The workshop was a huge success, as was the rest of the Science Communication Workshop; this included panel discussions and another break away group on blogging and social media.

Why teach scientists about public outreach?
There are a lot of good reasons for designing a workshop like this. Communication is an important part of ANY field, in whatever form it takes. In academia, people are constant drawn upon to write about, present about, or animate their results so that others in the research community can learn what you have done, and incorporate it accordingly in their own work. Science is built on the open source concept wherein you reach into the grab bag of work that has already been done, add your own experiment/twist/look at it, then send it back for others to do the same. It’s a wonderful system that requires good communication skills. By working to find the most important facts of your work and making it palatable for the public, you are also honing your ability to clearly and concisely communicate your work to the academic world as well. Therefore, by participating in public outreach, you are training yourself to better communicate with the layperson AND your peers.
It is also important to note that scientists have a duty to inform the public of what it is working on, because basic science has a huge impact on engineering, development, and future social connections. The public has a right to the knowledge scientists develop as it is funded by public dollars (for the most part).
Finally, public outreach is fun. It is a wonderful feeling to have someone excited about your field to talk to.

Canadian Astronaut Jeremy Hansen Interviewed by York Universe

The crew at York Universe were lucky enough to host Astronaut Jeremy Hansen (bio) of the Canadian Space Agency. Hosts Ryan Marciniak, Harrison Ruess, and Paul Delaney questioned and chatted with the former fighter pilot for about 20 minutes, which originally aired during a regular York Universe monday night airing. You can listen to the whole episode ‘Ground Control to Commander Chris,’ or just the interview on its own below.

York Universe attends ‘What’s Up in Space?’

This was a collaborative post, written by Jesse, Julie, Ryan, and Lianne, and included private communications with Paul.

     On May 25, 2013, the York Universe team (represented by Jesse Rogerson, Ryan Marciniak, Lianne Manzer, and Paul Delaney) in collaboration with York alumni Julie Tomé, attended the 2nd annual What’s Up in Space? event organized by the AstroNuts Kids Space Club.
The AstroNuts are a very energetic group of children aged 8-12 that meets once month at their Home Base in Newmarket, Ontario. For each meeting, Ray Bielecki (the club manager) organizes a range of science programming from one of Science, Technology, Engineering, or Math (STEM). Ray will often invite presenters to help him engage with the children. The club’s website describes the group best: “We are not a registered company, not a charity, not an association, not a not-for-profit, not a for-profit, we are ‘just’ an amazing local fun kids space club.”
The What’s Up in Space? event was designed to extend the reach of the AstroNuts to a broader audience. The AstroNuts can only maintain a relatively small group of club members, but for one day every year, Ray Bielecki and the AstroNuts team are able to engage hundreds of children at a time. York Universe and the York University Astronomical Observatory have presented at the event in the past, and we were all so excited to be invited back.

What's Up in Space? Crowd

The crowd at the 2nd Annual What’s Up in Space? event. Children aged 5 to 8 attended. In this picture, Ray Bielecki is introducing Dr. Dave Williams, Canadian Astronaut.

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Science and the New Media Ecosystem

On Monday, May 6, 2013, Bora Zivkovic (@BoraZ) will be giving a public talk in the Paul Delaney Gallery at York University. Mr. Zivkovic is the Blog Editor at Scientific American, where he also writes A Blog Around the Clock. He is also famous for Science Online, an annual conference in North Carolina. Mr. Zivkovic is both an accomplished scientist and writer; this public talk on how the internet and social media shape science communication will provide a larger context of the role we all play in science.

Boracourtesy of scientific american

Talk: Science and the New Media Ecosystem
Bora Zivkovic, Blog Editor at Scientific American
When: Monday, May 6, 2013, 2:00 – 3:30 pm
Where: Paul Delaney Gallery, Room 320, Bethune College
York University, Toronto,
Directions: Check building location on this Map, and these directions to YorkU campus.
Abstract: The whole media landscape is shifting and changing – newspapers on the decline with blogs, Twitter and YouTube on the rise. Science is no different. Come listen to one of the pioneers of online science communication talk about how this new media landscape is shaping how science is done, evaluated and communicated in an increasingly connected world.
Further Details:
John Dupuis (Confessions of a Science Librarian, @dupuisj) has both organized the public talk, as well as a ScienceOnline Toronto Tweetup  (#TORsciTweetup) at The Duke of York in the evening following the talk, starting at 7pm. Check out the Facebook event page to get details and sign up (or just show up!).
From John Dupuis: ‘The talk is open to the public. If you’d like to attend but aren’t sure about the logistics of getting to York, campus maps and directions are here. Subway construction has made getting to campus a bit complicated, so be aware of the various transit options on the map/directions page. You can also just email me at jdupuis at yorku dot ca.’

Sources:
Confessions of a Science Librarian – John Dupuis
Glendon Mellow

The Spectacular York Universe 150th Episode Extravaganza!

That’s right!! Tonight’s the  night! Make sure to tune in at a new time of  8 PM EDT (12 AM UT) to listen to all our hosts chat, debate, bicker, and laugh about all things astronomy and astrophysics! Tonight’s special episode is sure to tickle your funny bone!

With much more listener interaction tonight make sure to swing by our live online public viewing chat room here to participate!

As always, tune in at Astronomy.FM!