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Resource of the Week: Using Watercolor Training to Enhance an Ornithology Class

In this article in the journal Natural Sciences Education, faculty from Kansas State University describe a watercolor training assignment that enhanced undergraduate ornithology students’ ability to identify several species of waterfowl.

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Screenshot of website: image of several hand-drawn cartoon figures, with title which reads: Learn to Draw Cartoons with the (now public domain) 'Famous Artist Cartoon Course' Textbook

Resource of the Week: Famous Artist Cartoon Course

  Artist Mike O’Brien shares the drawing resource that has been most impactful for enhancing his ability to draw people. Read through the comments for trouble-shooting tips, if you have issues downloading the files in the linked-to article.

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Screenshot of Twitter thread. Follow links for full text.

Resource of the Week: Visualization Tips for Small Data Sets/Sample Sizes

According to Tracey L. Weissgerber, Natasa M. Milic, Stacey J. Winham, and Vesna D. Garovic, proper representation of small data sets and sample sizes allows accurate interpretation. Doing so, they assert, requires displaying continuous data. But, they write, “Most papers presented continuous data in bar and line graphs. This is problematic, as many different data distributions can lead to the same…

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Resource of the Week: BioRender

Excerpt from the website: “BioRender is a web app that enables scientists in biotech, biopharma and academia to create and share professional science figures in minutes (instead of hours!) using our scientifically accurate image library. We work with teams at Genentech, Sanofi, Johns Hopkins, Stanford and many emerging biotechs who use BioRender to make science figures way faster, better and cheaper in order to…

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Resource of the Week: Art = Opportunity (research-based talking points with citations)

If you are working in, interested in, and/or supportive of art-science integration, this extensive list of citations curated by Art = Opportunity may be useful for your project justification, fundraising efforts, etc. Excerpt from the Art = Opportunity project website: “ART=OPPORTUNITY is a campaign started in San Diego County, funded by a grant from the Stuart Foundation, and highlighting arts…

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Screenshot of paper, highlighting rule number one, which is "You don't have to be good at art."

Resource of the Week: 10 (ten) simple rules for drawing scientific comics

Excerpt from the paper Ten simple rules for drawing scientific comics: There are few scientists who haven’t heard of Randall Munroe, the artist behind the web comic “xkcd,” which features amazing graphic explanations on everything from climate change to data storage. These comics are widely appealing to a diverse audience and are posted on walls in laboratories and pubs alike. The ideas…

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Resource of the Week: Neurocomic (visual scicomm, inspiration)

Image: screenshot from the book’s website Looking for inspiration for how to communicate about the complex topics you study or work to share? We recently came across a graphic novel that might give you ideas. From the publisher: “Do you know what your brain is made of? How does memory function? What is a neuron and how does it work?…

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Drawn to Ecology: How sketch notes can enhance your science experience

Enhance your sketching toolkit at the #ESA100 “Communicating Science Vividly” workshop! Guest post by Bethann Garramon Merkle Everyone can sketch – even you. Sketching in the field to complement data collection? #doodling4science #outofthebox #scicomm #ESA2014 #pinkjuniper — Pika Jo Varner (@johannavarner) August 10, 2014 Researchers have demonstrated that drawing (even without training) can: aid learning & memorization help clarify what you…

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Ecological SciComm at the Frontier

It’s that time of the year – time to get your brain into ESA Annual Meeting Mode. You’re furiously finishing that data analysis in prep for a talk or poster. You’re checking out the Conference Program and getting your schedule in order. You’re registering for the meeting and arranging meet-ups with colleagues and collaborators. How about adding science communication to…

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#SketchYourScience takes off after ESA 2014 workshop

It’s happening! Multimedia SciComm is catching on, and our workshop participants are chief vectors for distributing the bug. Our last post was about Johanna Varner and the research she does on pikas. Inspired by Johanna’s own sketches, produced during our workshop, the Pikas on Ice post featured some delightful pika sketches by Jennifer Landin. Pikas on Ice! Nice Ecotone…

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