Pub. date: 2010 | Online Pub. Date: August 17, 2010 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412959216 | Print ISBN: 9781412959209 | Online ISBN: 9781412959216| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Visual Images in Science Communication
Visual images play a vitally important role in science communication. The way in which scientific information is visually presented helps summarize vast amounts of complex data and facilitates understanding and informed opinion. With figures, drawings, and other visual imagery, ideas, facts, and processes are communicated to the general public or a professional audience. Visual images can bring complex scientific processes and the sometimes invisible world of scientific phenomena to light. Esoteric scientific ideas can be brought to life with photographs, illustrations, and animations while stimulating interest and providing new understanding. However, such imagery can also be deceptive, misleading, and incorrectly used. Visual forms of science communication include tables, charts, photographs, motion pictures (film, video, computer animation, and big screen productions), museum displays, computer-generated pictures, holographic imagery, models, and even sculpture. Images of science are communicated in an assortment of venues, from academic journals and textbooks to the popular media of ...