Science Media Space is for scientists to learn how to maximise their use of social media. Science Media Space has been developed in collaboration with Econnect Communication, the Australian Science Media Centre and Scitech.
The course, developed as part of the federal government’s Inspiring Australia strategy, delivers 10 modules over 10 days, between 30 minutes and 1 hour a day. It shows scientists how they can use a range of social media tools and practices more effectively to maximise their interactions with the broader public. Three free courses have been enabled through grant funding, with a small fee payable from October 2013. Scientists and researchers interested can register here.
Course modules address topics such as why social media is important, how to write good tweets, Facebook posts and blogs, how to overcome bloggers’ block, guidelines for social media interaction and how to create the ultimate online profile. Scientists can study from home, the office or the lab and activities are completed in the Science Media Space dedicated forum. Daily feedback on modules and activities will be given by us at Bridge8 and Econnect Communication.
“I have been running media skills workshops for scientists for more than 20 years,” says Jenni Metcalfe, Director at Econnect Communication. “And these workshops now include social media as this is becoming a critical tool for communicating with journalists and getting scientists’ messages and profiles out there.
Kristin from Bridge8 agrees. “This course is useful for those new to social media, but more experienced users will also benefit. In trialling modules I found plenty of tips and tricks to refine the way use social media and communicate about science online.”
According to Matthew Satterthwaite, a PhD student at the Australian National University, building social media capabilities is something scientists need to integrate into their everyday skill set.
“Being able to effectively communicate professionally and to the public is a fundamental requirement for the scientific community,” says Mr Satterthwaite.
“If the public are using social media, then we need to understand how to use it well and how to communicate to both our peers and the public.”
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