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BE 331: Science Communication Public Engagement

Presenting Science


  • Be prepared: The more prepared you are to present the more comfortable and organized you will be
  • Know your topic: Make sure you are comfortable with the topic and can speak with authority
  • Know your audience: Tailor your presentation based on the expertise and interests of the audience. 
  • Prepare your audience: Provide an outline on what you plan on presenting
  • Use visuals: Ensure that each slide has at least one visual and explain why you are using that visual. 
  • Be enthusiastic: Don't let the audience think you are bored by your own research. 
  • Engage the audience: Have the audience ask questions, provide comments, and offer solutions. 
  • Do not read your notes: Good speakers can speak about their topic without reading from a paper. Reading also prevents you from making eye contact. 
  • Include references: Adds support to your research and presentation

Horlick, R. (2022, November 2). Presenting in the sciences: A guide. Tulane University Libraries.

Somerville, R. C. J., & Hassol, S. J. (2011). [Table]. Communicating the science of climate change. Physics Today, 64(10), 48.

When practiced, SIFT reveals the necessary context to read, view, or listen effectively before reading an article or other information online.

  • We learn about the author, speaker, or publisher: What’s their expertise? Their agenda? Their record of fairness or accuracy?
  • We check on claims: Are they broadly accepted? Rejected? Something in-between?
  • We don’t take evidence at face value. Is it presented in its original context, or with a certain frame that changes its meaning for the reader or viewer?

Listen to Mike Caulfield, the man who created the SIFT Method, in the short video below (1:30) as he explains why developing our online evaluation skills are more important now than ever before:

Los Angeles Valley College Library. (2022, November 23). What is the SIFT Method?