Applying collaboration & arts practices to help scientists and others learn to tell their stories and connect across differences
At Virginia Tech's Center for Communicating Science, we create and support experiences for scientists, engineers, scholars, and health professionals to build muscles of connection, communication, and collaboration. What sets us apart from other approaches and makes our work effective is that we use the powerful tools of the arts, including embodied learning, deep listening, improvisation, role play, and storytelling.
We believe in the power of play, and we believe that we learn through experience and by reflecting on our experiences.
We aim to help researchers make their communication more personal, direct, spontaneous, and responsive.
Build trust and learn through connection and engagement. Share stories, values, and emotions.
Drop your field-specific jargon; avoid acronyms; find a language in common with your audience.
Learn relaxation and rehearsal techniques to build confidence in your ability to explain your research.
Who is your audience? What do they need? What can you learn from them? How do you connect?
Center Funds Eight SciArt Collaborations
Thirteen artists. Thirteen scientists. One Zoom room. And so many great ideas!
On May 17 a group of diverse-minded, goal-oriented, and straight-up fun people spent a whole day being guided through exercises that explored each participant’s field of interest. From talks of fostering community engagement to telling the story of one’s name to discussing the evolutionary psychology of Bluehead Chubs, the 26 Collaboration Incubator participants were led through a cornucopia of cognitive workouts that sought to inspire interdisciplinary project proposals.
September 22: Science on Tap, 5:30 p.m., "Energy Justice: Why Solar Panels Aren't Enough" with Shannon Bell, Christine Labuski, and Cara Daggett. We're back in person and will meet at Rising Silo, 2351 Glade Road, Blacksburg. Join us to learn how a feminist perspective on energy helps us understand what keeps us stuck in unsustainable energy cultures and design truly just energy systems.
October 27: Science on Tap, 5:30 p.m., "Bird in the Place Where you Live" with Amber Wendler and Marissa Langaer. We're back in person and will meet at Rising Silo, 2351 Glade Road, Blacksburg. Join us for an interactive talk to learn more about these wonderful animals, followed by a leisurely walk where you will identify local birds and contribute to community science.
Here's some of what we've been up to recently:
9/10/2021 ICAT Play Date (Girls Launch! A Pandemic Response to Providing Female Scientist Role Models to Children)
9/3/2021 Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics (Introduction to Improvisation for Scientists)
9/1/2021 Virginia/Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, Topics in Human-Animal Interaction (Describing Basic Procedures, an Interactive Communication Workshop)
8/25/2021 Fralin Life Sciences Institute Communications, Marketing, & Branding Seminar
8/25/2021 Science on Tap, Kristin Rose Jutras: The Poetry of Science Communications
7/19/2021 - 8/13/2021 German Fulbright Summer Institute 2021, “Communicating Across Disciplines: New Approaches for Applied Sciences”
7/28/2021 Science on Tap, Emmanuel Frimpong and Hiromi Okumura: The Art and Science of Stream Biodiversity
6/24/2021 Science on Tap, Abby Lewis: Oxygen: Stories of Fire, Beer, and the Guillotine
5/17/2021 SciArts Collaboration Incubator
5/14/2021 Institute of Food Technologists (Effective Strategies to Communicate Science, an Interactive Workshop)
5/4/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Make It Memorable's Hands-on PowerPoint: Learn How to Turn Theory into Practice)
4/29/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Make It Memorable’s Decoding Slide Design: Using Science and Art to Make Powerful Visuals)
4/27/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Make It Memorable’s Rethinking Presentations: Memorable and Influential Presentations)
4/22/2021 Science on Tap, New River Valley (Sweta Baniya, Minh Duong, Sara Richards, Jennifer Sano-Franchini, Khanh To, Na Xie: Asian & Pacific Islander in Academia: Research Stories and Successes)
4/22/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (The Story Collider's Crafting a Story of Your Research, Part 2)
4/20/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (The Story Collider's Crafting a Story of Your Research, Part 1)
4/15/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (The Story Collider’s Crafting Your Personal Science Story, Part 2)
4/13/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (The Story Collider’s Crafting Your Personal Science Story, Part 1)
4/1/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (The Story Collider’s Introduction to Storytelling for Scientists)
3/31/2021 Orion Living-Learning Program First-Year Students (Communicating Science workshop)
3/30/2021 Orion Living-Learning Program First-Year Students (Communicating Science workshop)
3/30/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (The Story Collider’s Introduction to Storytelling for Scientists)
3/25/2021 Science on Tap, New River Valley (Bruce Hull: Leading From Where You Are: Sustaining Hope for a Sustainable Future)
3/25/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Open Sessions for Practice Communicating)
3/23/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Open Sessions for Practice Communicating)
3/18/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Making Your Research Understandable: Bridging the Gap)
3/16/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Effective Presentations: Building Confidence and Personal Presence)
3/11/2021 Virginia Tech Roanoke Center (Connecting Across Difference: Skills for Effective Communication in Person and Online)
3/4/2021 Virginia Tech Roanoke Center (Connecting Across Difference: Skills for Effective Communication in Person and Online)
3/4/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Learning to Listen: Connecting with Audiences and Collaborators)
3/2/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Make It Memorable’s Presenting Better Virtually: Engage Your Audience in a Virtual Setting)
2/25/2021 Science on Tap, New River Valley (Bennett Grooms: A New Age of Conservation: Helping Wildlife by Understanding People)
2/25/2021 Virginia Tech Roanoke Center (Connecting Across Difference: Skills for Effective Communication in Person and Online)
2/18/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Distilling Your Message: Succinct and Compelling Interactions)
2/16/2021 Pinch-of-Practice Workshop (Distilling Your Message: Succinct and Compelling Interactions)
1/28/2021 Science on Tap, New River Valley (Daniel Bird Tobin: Embodying Emotional Connections to Science Through Theatre)
1/27/2021 Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences Graduate Student Association (Communicating Your Research Online. . .Is Like Making Your Own Hollywood Blockbuster!)
1/14/2021 Women and Gender in Development Conference (Preparatory workshop: Communicating Your Research)
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