Council for the Advancement of Science Writing

CASW Periscope

The human brain isn’t great at understanding probability. But as science writers, we must often communicate probability accurately and vividly to our readers. Fortunately, science writers can use a number of reliable strategies to convey just what a 15 percent chance of an extreme weather event, or an 80 percent chance of recovering from a... more
Ten countries, 38 reporters, 29 in-depth stories, and a database that documents nearly 2,400 acts of violence against Latin American environmental leaders are a few of the numbers that characterize the ambitious Land of Resistants project. To achieve their goals, the team clearly defined concepts, methods, and deadlines from the beginning.... more
Diez países, 38 reporteros, 29 reportajes de largo aliento y una base de datos que documenta más de 2.400 episodios violentos contra líderes ambientales latinoamericanos son algunas de las cifras del ambicioso proyecto periodístico Tierra de Resistentes. Para completar el proyecto, el equipo delimitó claramente los conceptos más relevantes, la... more
Interviewing scientists is a basic part of science journalism. But choosing the right sources and having a successful conversation can be a challenging task—even for seasoned reporters. There is no guarantee that every interview is going to be great, but planning and preparing well can maximize your chances of getting the information you need and... more
Recent, rapid rises in computing power have led to a massive influx of studies across fields using advanced analysis methods, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and computational modeling. The complexity—and, at times, flashiness—of these methods means that science journalists have a unique responsibility and role to play in communicating the... more
Gregor Mendel's pea plant experiments, which investigated how traits are inherited, is the stuff (fluff?) of science legend. But what about his lesser-known experiments with sugar-coated marshmallow chicks? A diorama of the 19th century Augustinian monk’s work with Peep plants has won the Golden Peep in the third annual World’s Finest Science-... more
Maybe you’re a scientist who’s making the leap into journalism. Maybe you’re a general-assignment reporter, or an education reporter, or a city hall reporter, and you’ve been assigned your first science story. Or maybe you’re a journalism student who wants to try covering science or medicine or the environment. But whoever you are, if you’re... more
Quizás eres un científico que está dando el salto al periodismo. Tal vez seas un reportero de asignaciones generales, de educación o de política y te han asignado tu primera noticia sobre un tema científico. O tal vez eres un estudiante de periodismo que quiere probar cubrir temas de ciencia, medicina o medio ambiente. Sin importar quién seas, si... more
Rapidly advancing prenatal testing technology may soon hand parents the routine decision of what kind of child they will, or won’t, bring into the world. A prime example is Down syndrome, where in countries like Denmark, a majority of families who receive a prenatal diagnosis of the condition decide to end their pregnancies. Atlantic reporter... more
The past year is littered with tales of the rich and privileged living as if there were no pandemic. One of them, Silicon Valley entrepreneur Peter Diamandis, threw an in-person conference in defiance of a Southern California stay-at-home order. A $30,000 ticket gave attendees a front-row seat to what would become a COVID-19 superspreader event,... more