Susan A. Nolan
Susan A. Nolan
Seton Hall University
Presidential Address: Beyond the Academy: 11 Easy Ways to Share Psychological Science
That work that I did to change people’s minds was far more important than my laboratory work,” anatomist Leonard Hayflick told a reporter. Too often we neglect the important, but difficult, work of talking about science outside of our academic circles – the work of changing minds in line with evidence. This work is necessary to change perceptions of our discipline, impart research findings with personal and societal implications, and drive policy discussions. There are many ways we, as individual psychologists, can get the word out – among them writing for student or general audiences, developing relationships with journalists, engaging with social media, volunteering our scientific expertise, and speaking to community organizations. Institutional changes would help, too. In our graduate education, most of us don’t receive media training, guidance on developing clear and engaging presentations, or experience writing for nonacademic audiences. In our careers, there are few incentives these pursuits. Tenure and promotion committees, if they consider this type of work at all, often view outreach to the general public as anti-scholarly or as service rather than teaching or scholarship. In this talk, Susan will explore the need for sharing psychological science, the challenges to doing so, and specific ways we can do more of this as students and in our careers.