Writing About Psychological Science for the General Public

REPOST from the APA Psychological Science Agenda | November 2015

From The Science Student Council

Writing about psychological science for the general public

Considerations and strategies for effectively sharing your research with the world.

By Daniel R. Rovenpor

Imagine the following scenario: You spent years working on a project that aimed to produce a novel data-driven insight into a problem in the world. Then, with some luck, your work is successful and your insight gets published in a prestigious academic psychology journal. You hope that many people will see your article and learn about your insight, but you know that the chances are slim that the average person will see your article in an academic journal. This discrepancy between psychology’s potential to do good in the world and the fact that only a small fraction of the world’s population reads our journals is often frustrating. How can psychological scientists communicate to a broad audience? There are a number of ways to do this, including teaching, community outreach and advocacy. This article focuses on another way: writing for the general public.

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