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Activity Number: 402
Type: Invited
Date/Time: Tuesday, August 2, 2016 : 2:00 PM to 3:50 PM
Sponsor: Section on Teaching of Statistics in the Health Sciences
Abstract #318039 View Presentation
Title: Journalism in a Journal Club: The Art of Writing About Science
Author(s): Nancy Pfenning*
Companies: University of Pittsburgh
Keywords: epidemiology ; journal club ; journalism ; media

Can fried food lead to gestational diabetes? Do cancer patients fare better if they're married? Graduate students in an Epidemiology Journal Club at the University of Pittsburgh weren't just interested in answers to those questions. Instead, they delved deeper, with the help of their co-advisors from Statistics and Journalism, to seek answers to more subtle questions: Does the published journal article suggest a well-designed study, with careful statistical analysis and stated conclusions that accurately reflect the outcome? Does the associated media article present the study's findings clearly and correctly? How do various media sources compare, in terms of conveying relevant results without confusion or bias? Throughout the academic year 2013-2014, a small group of serious health science students took turns presenting on current research of interest, guided by their co-advisors to scrutinize articles' statistical analysis as well as the language used to describe a study and its results. Each month featured a new eye-opening experience for participants and advisors alike. This talk describes the club's format and some highlights, in terms of discoveries made and lessons learned.

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

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