Council for the Advancement of Science Writing

CASW Periscope

The tightening of access to our public servants and information is a critical issue for the science writing community. Join us in D.C. on October 16 for the Information Access Summit. Read more Article type: ScienceWriters meetingArticle topic: Science writing news
Emily KassieLizzie Presser Before abortion was legal across the United States, underground networks of women—such as the Jane Collective in Chicago—worked secretly to help end unwanted pregnancies. They used herbs, pills, and homemade devices to discreetly provide abortions at the homes of the women who needed them. Then, in 1973, the U.S. Supreme... more
Tulane Medical Center in New Orleans is a modern teaching hospital offering the latest innovative treatments from a staff of highly trained experts. So why do its communications about prostate cancer sound like they were crafted on a bayou backwater that’s 20 years behind the times? Their PR team is promoting an event called Man Up! Geaux... more
DNA makes us who we are. But how? In Genetics 101, Beth Skwarecki starts at the beginning. She aims to build lay readers’ understanding step-by-step, and moves from describing basic building blocks of cellular information to how traits are inherited to topics in the news, including how DNA ancestry services work, ethical quandaries posed by... more
It’s been a long, hot summer with no small amount of scary headlines. While we’ve covered the topic of summer scare-mongering before, what’s trending this summer is less random and more insect-and-critter obsessed. Bats, ticks, dog saliva, drunken wasps, and a vast array of parasites could truly turn this into a summer of despair (if judging by... more
We write about the limitations of drawing conclusions from observational studies quite a bit. Why?  Because there are ever more such studies and ever more news stories and PR news releases about such studies.  And few include an important discussion of what these studies can do and what they can’t. We want to be very clear about this Please... more
Some headlines over the weekend heralded dire-sounding news about HDL, the so-called “good” cholesterol: Too much good cholesterol could raise risk of death, study suggests (Newsweek) Excessive ‘good’ cholesterol can be life threatening: study Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) But those scary statements are misleading. Here... more
When Intuitive Surgical, manufacturer of the DaVinci robotic surgery system, last month reported that it had exceeded revenue and earnings expectations for the quarter, the company CEO said, “We’re neither satisfied nor comfortable.” But, clearly, neither are some observers in medicine satisfied or comfortable about the technology... more
Irochka_T/iStock   So you’ve landed an internship in science journalism. Way to go! These positions are competitive, and standing out in a pool of talented applicants is an accomplishment in itself. When I found out I had been chosen for a six-month internship at Science—my first internship at a national publication—I was ecstatic. As my... more