I’m all about science communication and sharing my research with the general public. Over the past few years, I’ve been on quite a journey in improving my science communication skills. It all started when I was accepted into the inaugural ARVO Science Communication Training Fellowship in 2017. This fellowship equipped me with the skills and confidence to communicate my science to a wide variety of audiences. An important component of the fellowship involved initiating your own science outreach project. For my project, I decided to crowdfund my PhD project on Experiment.com. In order to reach my goal, I had to spread the word to the general public in a way that was engaging, highlighting how meaningful it was to invest in cataract research. I realised that it wasn’t about using complex jargon like “transforming growth factor beta” or “epidermal growth factor receptor” but rather, it was about seeing the big picture and explaining my research in clear, simple terms. After creating the video, I turned to social media, posting my crowdfunding campaign on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Amazingly, it was successfully funded with 47 backers and raised $2630, surpassing my $2000 goal. It was touching to hear how some of my backers had personally been affected by cataract or knew someone who had been.
It’s so easy to get caught up in the jargon and start explaining jargon with more jargon to a point where these words take on a new meaning for you. In order to communicate our science effectively, it’s about remembering back to the days when we just started our research and all the jargon was complicated and confusing. How would you explain your research to someone who’s not in your field or new to your field? Better yet, how would you explain your research to friends or family if they ask you what you do?
And that brings me to my exciting, new project, “Emojifying Research”. I absolutely love using Emojis to add a bit of fun to my texts (my friends would probably say that I overuse them). I thought, wouldn’t it be fun to challenge my science friends to explain their research purely in emojis?
I posted my “Emojifying Research” project on both Instagram and Twitter and invited my followers to participate. I’m so grateful to everyone who supported me in this project and all the participants! It was so fun to read about your projects and share them on my social media platforms. I’ve added them to this blog post. This one’s a fun read! Enjoy 😊
If you want to get involved in my “Emojifying Research” Project, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.