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BIOB98 Supervised Introductory Research in Biology

This guide will help students in BIOB98 to facilitate science communication and storytelling, find relevant resources in library databases, and develop search strategies for their final project.

Storytelling Basics

Getting Started


  1. What is your subject?
  2. Who is your potential audience?
  3. What are the most interesting and/or unique aspects of your subject?
  4. Why does your subject matter?
  5. What story do you want to tell about your subject?
  6. What jargon or concepts might you need to explain?
  7. How will you keep your audience's attention?
  8. What do you want your audience to remember?

Class feedback on storytelling & science communication

What did you like? What didn’t you like? About the videos/podcasts you listened to:

  • Words that help people to visualize – sensory 

  • Think about asking a question that gets the reader to ponder perhaps  

  • Help with identification – looking around identifying through leaves etc.  

  • Too general – needs more explanation – maybe definition parts 

  • The concept of cooperative trees as a model for how humans can be like – ethics aspect  

  • Think about the audience – engaging way of telling the story that you can understand 

  • Interview style  

  • Traditional medicine – informational side vs. Entertainment side  

  • Jargon and terminology 

  • What's most important to share 

  • Journey and conversational narrative – connect tree to ravine 

  • Forest succession, disease, soil, tree communication, pests, native/non-native 

  • Comedic relief 

  • Terminology – using lay language to explain a concept 

  • Senses and sounds  

  • Metaphors  

  • Referencing a book that is key to the discussion 

  • Words that have more of an affect and visual – creative writing in a sense  

  • Conversation with someone you are interviewing – sharing in this way- what questions someone might ask you about the plant that you would write about.