689   Insight talk

Science Engagement Through Videos

Author: João Cardoso
CNC - Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology, University of Coimbra; PhD program in History of Sciences and Science Education, Institute for Interdisciplinary Research of the University of Coimbra (III-UC), Portugal

It is undeniable that science communication plays a crucial role in the establishment of relationships between science and society. Nonetheless, the rapid evolution of scientific knowledge and popular cultures, with high digital engagement, demands the development of more and better digital strategies to engage society in scientific topics.

In order to address this challenge, we at CNC have been developing science communication videos focusing on different research topics: the video lines Selfie Science and ASK (Always Seeking Knowledge) Researchers. Selfie Science episodes aim to schematically explain scientific research projects to a non-academic public. ASK Researchers series promotes the online interaction with society - everyone can submit their questions to the featured researcher to be answered in an interview format. We launched the projects in March of 2019 and since then we explored several scientific topics, by releasing an episode of each video line on a monthly basis. We already produced 9 Selfie Science episodes and 6 ASK Researchers episodes, that focused several topics in biomedicine and biotechnology as neuroscience, metabolism, microbiology, aging, cell reprogramming and pathophysiology of different diseases (Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Depression, Gut Dysbiosis, Machado-Joseph's Disease, Progeria, Autism, Male Infertility and Tuberculosis). In each video, we also demonstrated laboratory techniques associated with each type of scientific research.

We believe that this strategy promoted better dissemination of these various research fields and raised awareness for these diseases in online platforms, as we observed high viewing rates and the topics. We conducted a pilot evaluation study in order to understand the potential of the videos to promote knowledge acquisition and to foster engagement of public towards scientific topics and research. 

Co-author: Ana Teresa Viegas
CNC - Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology, University of Coimbra, Portugal

Co-author: Sara Amaral
CNC - Center for Neuroscience and Cell Biology, University of Coimbra, Portugal

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