Can We Make a Difference?

   Chris Mooney and Sheril Kirshenbaum cover scientific literacy, and the lack of in America, in Unscientific America. One subject of matter that I found interesting in the readings was how the media plays a significant role in feeding us science. We also went over the percentage of scientific accuracy provided by certain news outlets such as CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News. The accuracy in science that is reported threatens our ability to understand and support science as a nation, and in turn can give scientists a potential bad reputation.

    Not to put the blame for our scare scientific literacy completely on the media, but news broadcasters on television tend to give people what they want to hear. Sadly, what we want to hear isn’t necessarily science anymore. Especially with two candidates running for president this November (who some would even consider questionable). This lack of science in the media is dangerous, as it takes away a large amount of education that could be given to a great amount of people that need it.

    Even with the science that is reported, a heavy amount of it is falsely reported. We learned that only about a third of the information reported on Fox News is accurate. This is scary news to us, considering that we already lack a huge amount of science in the news. What can we do to get accurate and new information? How can we change this society into a more educational, and scientifically appreciative society? It has to come from a change in the people themselves.

    According to an article from phys.org (link at the bottom of the page), 20 million in America have a degree in science and engineering. How can so many people have a decent education, yet still leave America so uneducated? Because we lack a certain amount of scientific freedom in America. Our media gives us false, biased information, with very little exposure to what is scientifically accurate. Therefore, we need to make an act. With this many citizens with educated background in America, we have a duty to expose the media and get the facts that the rest of our nation needs to hear. I want to leave you with a question: how can you individually help change our nation into one that is more scientifically literate?

 

Andrew Ebding

 

Information Referenced:

http://phys.org/news/2016-06-accurate-science-accessible-media.html

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Can We Make a Difference?

  1. A lot need to be done in terms of getting the media to cover more science stories and other science related topics. It’s crazy that it isn’t talked about more in the news since it’s such an important part of our lives. Then when science does get covered, a lot of the time it’s wrong information. I think this is also a probably because it makes some people question how creditable scientific studies are since they hear things from both sides, some of which isn’t true. Communicating science effectively to the public is definitely something that the scientific community needs to work on in the near future.

    Jacob Fischer

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  2. Aside from lack of coverage on important scientific topics by media, the amount of inaccurate reporting is frightening, to say the least. Many people generally feel like they should be able to rely on the news to be accurate and honest when they report information. Because of this expectation, many people also do not investigate the information further after hearing it on the news.

    For example, after watching the presidential debates, I noticed my friends on Facebook would create or comment on posts and just completely repeat what one of the candidates obviously without fact-checking. I think the media should be more regulated, but since it is not right now, I think we need to be more proactive about getting multiple sources for information, and especially from sources that are credible.

    Good post!

    – Chelsea Walters

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