Council for the Advancement of Science Writing

CASW Periscope

This is our third go-round looking for disconnects between what a headline implies or emphasizes, and what the substance of the referenced study really is. And we are beginning to see some themes that almost invariably raise our eyebrows, such as headlines that make factual claims from what are clearly preliminary results. Or headlines that–... more
Ivan Oransky and Adam Marcus put a common statistical test under their microscope, quoting scientists who think it's overused: "Getting statistics right is difficult — and requires careful thought, not just slapping on a p-value and calling it a day. It wasn’t always this way; p-values are only about 350 years old. They’re not the laws of physics... more
Katia Savchuk interviews the Newjack author about tricks of the trade for undercover reporting, as well as its ethics: "Don’t actively lie. Don’t make up a false backstory to explain why you’re there or to get a job … Some people will say you’re being deceptive simply by putting on a prison guard uniform or federal meat inspector uniform. To a... more
The National Academy of Science has weighed in on genome editing with "a sane report on prospects for editing the human genome," Tabitha M. Powledge writes: "I’d characterize it as a flashing yellow light, or nearly so, at least by comparison with the position an NAS-sponsored group took in December 2015. At that time, the recommendation was... more
The NASW Diversity Fellowship. Apply by April 1. Making ends meet on an intern’s salary can be hard. Stipends, even the more generous ones being offered, don’t always cover the full costs of temporarily relocating. The National Association of Science Writers is pleased to introduce a fellowship for talented students and early-career science... more
If you've ever considered going on a writer's retreat, Melanie Bishop has some advice for you: Don't get so focused on the work that you forget to recharge your creative powers with a little bit of play as well: "Productivity is certainly one goal of a retreat. But there are other desired outcomes, such as returning home rested, relaxed, and... more
Vitamin D is a hot research topic, but the public gets a lot of mixed messages about its usefulness and safety. Case in point: One of the latest studies, published Wednesday, Feb. 15, analyzed results from 25 previous trials and found that vitamin D supplementation might help prevent respiratory infections in some people who have low vitamin D... more
No politics this time! Unless science politics counts. DESIGNER BABIES ARE OK SOMETIMES The National Academy of Sciences, bless its heart, has tackled once again the genomic future that is just a... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]
During the first open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act (ACA; also called “Obamacare”) back in 2013-2014 most people were getting information regarding the law’s health insurance options from local television news, but that news coverage was highly politicized and rarely included information consumers needed to make an... more
NASW and other organizers of the 10th World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ2017) unveiled details of the upcoming event at an information session held today at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Announcements included program themes, new plenary speakers, an initiative to serve attendees from... more