This project aims to examine how scientists engage in communication of science beyond academia, and how metacognition—humans’ ability to reflect on and control our knowledge and cognition—facilitates the adaptation of their writing to different readers, contexts, and purposes. Modern universities face a pressing need to disseminate scientific knowledge outside of academia—to the public, the industry, and governmental bodies. However, communication abilities are often undervalued in the training of future scientists. Thus, the project aims to investigate 1) what kinds of writing scientists do, beyond article publication; and 2) how they think around these writing tasks. The project will first analyze the types of non-academic genres that scientists produce in broad rhetorical terms (topic, audience and purpose). In a second phase, the project will examine how scientists use metacognitive thinking to plan, monitor and revise writing tasks that have as primary target the communication of science beyond academic circles. This phase entails a qualitative analysis of the writing practices of specific researchers—case studies—particularly engaged in dissemination of science. The study will illuminate how scientific writing expertise can be promoted, a critical dimension in training future scientists to disseminate their knowledge clearly, effectively, and creatively.
The project is closed: 03/01/2022