In the previous post, sociologist Deborah Lupton described how she is using digital channels to share news and discussions from her field of medical sociology.
This post has links to two clips which might be of use to researchers and others with an interest in disseminating research and knowledge (both were found Twitter, btw)
Using psychology research to deliver better presentations
This presentation, “Five things every presenter needs to know about people”, is by psychologist and author Susan Weinschenk. It says:
• People learn best in 20 minute chunks. If your presentation is longer than 20 minutes, find a way to divide it up into 20 minute segments.
• Multiple sensory channels compete. The visual channel trumps auditory. If you show complicated visual information, the audience will not be listening any more. As soon as people are reading, they’re not listening to you. (I particularly like the line, what are slides with a lot of text on them? Your notes!).
• What you say is only part of your message. People process information unconsciously and react to your voice, stance etc. Think about how you are saying what you are saying. Record a video and look at your body language and listen for what your paralinguistics are saying.
• If you want people to act, you have to call them to action. At the end of your presentation be very specific about what you want your audience to do.
• People imitate what they see. When you are passionate about your topic, your audience will be too.
There is more in Weinschenk’s book, 100 things every presenter needs to know about people, and you can also find her on Twitter, @thebrainlady.
Some more expert tips
This is from a presentation at the University of Sydney by public health advocate Professor Simon Chapman.
Amongst other things, he says:
• Most research is not read or cited. If you are doing research “to change the world”, then you need to actively engage with communications channels other than scientific journals for getting the word out.
• Even a “rock star” of epidemiology, like Sir Richard Peto, has many papers that have never been cited.
Chapman explains how he has used Twitter and facebook to boost readership of a book he co-authored on prostate cancer screening, Let sleeping dogs lie? What men should know about before getting tested for prostate cancer (freely available here).
Of course, there is also an argument that not all research deserves to be disseminated more widely…