Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412972048 | Print ISBN: 9780761929574 | Online ISBN: 9781412972048| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Science and Technology Journalism
Rex A. Martin
Science journalism uses news media to convey information about science and technology topics to the general public. The primary task of a science journalist is to render the complex, precise, and often jargon-laden findings of scientists, inventors, and engineers into a form that the average reader or viewer can understand and appreciate, while still communicating that news accurately and objectively. In recent decades, the amount and extent of scientific news has grown rapidly, with technology playing an increasingly central role in society and everyday life. Health/medical issues and environmental reporting have developed into distinctive “news beats.” The differences between the methods and goals of journalists and of scientists, particularly their distinctive ways of presenting information, have led to challenges for both. Journalists tend to have a greater inclination toward sensationalism and speculation than scientists, whereas scientists focus more on explicit facts and empirical measurement. Scientific reports and studies are often ...