Author: Sungtao Lee – National Taichung University of Education, Taiwan

Co-author: Yuyun Nien – National Taichung University of Education

This study explored college students’ related competencies while they contact different scientific research information within internet environment. Six copies of science news text under three different themes (disease prevention, medical treatment, and healthy diet) with academic research information were edited from local newspapers as the research tool. Sixty-seven college students with basic science background were invited to participate in this internet survey and ten open-ended questions were designed to examine their reading performances. A qualitative analysis approach was adopted with an inter-rater reliability ranged from 0.72~0.89 and basic statistics were calculated for comparisons. The results indicated that subject students tended to find keywords from the title, introduction or conclusion within the news text. Additionally, some reading comprehension difficulties were observed from their understandings of research conclusions, terminologies and inquiry procedures despite their science education background and proper inferences for the research hypothesis. Furthermore, the communication purposes of these science news were more interpretively and constructively perceived compared with information transmission and students revealed limited doubt for the news text structures in science communication, although they did show critical attitude toward the inquiry procedures mentioned within the texts. Finally, most students were inclined to believe the research reports and will adjust their deeds accordingly. Some implications for science communication and education will be discussed in the presentation.

The author has not yet submitted a copy of the full paper.

Presentation type: Visual talk
Theme: Science
Area of interest: Investigating science communication practices