Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Annotated Working Draft and Hot Spots in Microbiology

Component Assignments
  1. Communication and Persuasion in Microbiology
    This post illustrates the importance of a type of translator between the scientific community and the general public.  It highlights the gap between those two audiences, and the use of the media to bridge the gap.  
  2. Storytelling in Microbiology
    Tricked ya; There's not actually a link there, because for some reason I didn't know this blog post assignment existed.  I would have written about either of two topics.  One would be the difference in presentation of a story I tell my dad about what research I conduct in the lab, versus a story I tell a publishing journal about what research I conduct in the lab.  The other topic I might have written about would have been the difference in a pathetic appeal in anti-vaccine arguments and the ethical appeal in pro-vaccine arguments.
  3. Microbes, Microbes, Everywhere; But Which Ones Can You See?
    This post follows the story of Van Leeuwenhoek, known as the father of microbiology, in his visual discovery of microbes.  The two main points I emphasized were that the general public did not believe his findings because of their own preconceived notions, and that the evolution of technology allowed for this discovery, as technology aids in the expansion of the field of microbiology today.
  4. Institutional Authority and Communication in Microbiology
    Taking a more scientist-to-scientist approach, this post describes the framework involved in developing a hierarchy for journals that articles are submitted to.  It gives insight into how these journals are valued as credible sources, or not, which to the general public may not mean as much as it does to a scientist.
Hot Spots
  1. Hotspot #1 (personal): My passion for vaccine promotion, partially based on my experiences with vaccine research and development, and very much so fueled by the vaccine debates.  I have a strong interest in how this debate arose, as well as the rhetoric involved in arguing both sides of the debate. 
  2. Hotspot #2 (in microbiology): The consistent need for scientists to somehow be understood (and believed) by the general public.  Most often this happens through the news media outlets, but is there a way scientists can make research and ideas more accessible without this translator?  To eliminate the middle man would make for a more efficient line of communication if it could be done accurately and appropriately.
  3. Hotspot #3 (in history): As technology develops and changes over time, there is an increased need for microbiologists to be up to date on what machinery is most effective and reliable. However, because some research topics within microbiology are so specific, a translation from scientist to scientist is needed to understand what the best equipment for non-familiar fields is if they are to understand and evaluate articles from within that field and deem them credible or relevant sources.


  1. Your first hot spot is a really interesting and kairotic issue right now. I see so many young parents posting on social media about the dangers of vaccines from unreliable sources. We, as a society, have lost a level of concern for legitimate credibility.

  2. My dad works as a sales rep for pharmaceuticals and this really is where medicine needs to go. Abuse resistant drugs and positive promotion for vaccines is a big part of what he has been dealing with lately.