I am lucky enough to work with some amazing people in an enrichment program for teens who love science. The leaders create activities to help students explore science in different ways. These exercises are usually more than the usual outreach or classroom activity – but they could be adapted to work within classrooms or for other settings.
So how do we share this great work? We are talking about sharing resources, not education research results.
Most of the leaders are graduate students or newer PostDocs and we are trying to publish these new resources. Right now, we are looking at submitting to teacher journals like The Physics Teacher and Mathematics Teacher. But some of these articles will end up beyond a paywall so are we sequestering these resources?
Budget is a concern so some of the OA journals are also out of reach because we can’t afford the fees within our budget-strapped outreach program.
I asked the following on twitter:
Is there an sci outreach resource journal? Collection of activities beyond lecture? Would you want one?
— genegeek (@genegeek) April 6, 2014
I got some great responses:
Some interesting suggestions:
I liked the idea of these last two resources.
- Howtosmile.org is a searchable collection of resources. This could be a good starting point. Many of the activities are done by organizations and are for younger children but I think we could add things there.
- Informalscience.org is a database to ‘collect and share informal science education projects, evaluation, and research resources.’ This seems to be more formal research and evaluation programs.
I’m looking for something that blends these two things – but is that too difficult?
Should outreach/science communication/engagement have its own journal? Maybe something similar to the new Science Museum Group journal? They will present ‘the global research community with peer-reviewed papers relevant to the wide-ranging work of the Science Museum Group. The journal freely shares the research of four national UK museums and warmly invites contributions that resonate with their collections and practice.’
What I’d love:
- Authors can get publication (DOI credit) for their resources
- Would using something like figshare work? Cite your resource in this database and put into more general bank of resources?
- A journal (database?) where you could also publish tips and tricks for science communication but at the review or opinion level. There is often a disconnect between people who want to communicate science and those who study the field. I have to admit that I have trouble reading education research papers so I’d love to have reviews that bridge the gap between my science expertise and the important social science research.
- Place where people can share their experience with the resources
Does this exist? What is close?
If you have any suggestions, please leave them in the comments or contact me!