Author Archives: Tom Schoenfeld

About Tom Schoenfeld

I am an olfactory neurobiologist who practices his science at Fitchburg State University, Fitchburg, MA, in the Department of Biology and Chemistry. I have created "dissectingpublicscience.com" to help educate both my science students and the interested non-scientist about the process of science, by focusing discussions on how science is presented and misrepresented in the public media.

Overbye’s teaching moment about scientific discovery and uncertainty

In my humble opinion (alright:  IMHO), the best science writing combines reporting on current advances in science — the knowledge or content — with insights into the process of science — how the new knowledge was acquired, and with what … Continue reading

Posted in consensus, doubt, news media, physics, replication, scholarship, science writer | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Our “Darwin problem” is really about power and influence (and doubt)

A key challenge to the public perception and acceptance of science, and to the scientists and science writers charged with communicating scientific results to an interested public, is the increasingly common rejection of mainstream science by influential non-scientists. A long-standing … Continue reading

Posted in biology, blog, book, climate science, doubt, evolution, peer review, reporting, science denial, science vs. religion, science writer, scientist, theory | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Searching for objectivity in the nature vs. nurture debate

We like to think that science is objective, that its approach to knowledge derives from the lack of bias. Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. Despite the best of intentions, scientists confront and fight with bias all the … Continue reading

Posted in blog, nature vs. nurture, news media, objectivity, peer review, psychology, science writer | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Why do women leave science?

I happened across a thoughtful essay this morning on women in science, at the blog zinemin’s random thoughts.  The blogger is a senior postdoc in physics, apparently living and working in the Netherlands.  She highlights two problem areas — cultural … Continue reading

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Hitting sweet spot in reporting on new subatomic particle

So, Wednesday, July 4, was supposed to be THE day, when physicists scheduled an announcement about the 30-year search for the existence of a subatomic particle known as the Higgs Boson.  The Higgs Boson is predicted to exist by the … Continue reading

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Welcome!

This is the inaugural post to our new blog, Dissecting Public Science.  As articulated more comprehensively in the Mission statement, our goal is to open an ongoing conversation about how the process of science is represented, or misrepresented, in the public … Continue reading

Posted in blog, climate science, evolution, first principles, fraud, GMO, science vs. religion, science writer, scientist | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment