Are you interested in writing scientific research blogs? As a researcher, you should be interested in both reading and writing scientific blogs. There are many types of scientific blogs including science news blogs, blogs for scientific associations, research blogs, and educational blogs. These blogs are a platform for sharing and critiquing science. Here, we will describe why blogging can be good for your research career and how you can get started. Although this article focuses on scientific research blogs, these principles apply to all types of blogging.
In a scientific research blog, you discuss your own work or a peer-reviewed paper. Its purpose could be anything from talking about new research, debunking myths, calling up forgotten science, or explaining a difficult concept. As a scientist with in-depth knowledge in a certain field, you are better equipped to doing this than someone else such as a journalist who may not be familiar with the concepts. You also have hands-on lab experience and will have a deeper understanding of the experiments. This puts you in a good position to discuss a paper’s strengths and weaknesses and talk about its wonders.
Why Scientific Blogging Can Help You
Time is often a constraint for researchers, and you may wonder whether you have the time to pursue – science blogging. However, if you do make the time, you will acquire several benefits such as:
- Refining your writing skills.
- Promoting your work and yourself.
- Educating the public (and your students).
- Networking with others in your field.
- Initiating collaborations.
- Receiving feedback on your ideas in an informal setting.
How to Start Writing Research Blogs
Here are a few guidelines to start writing your research blog-
- Before you hit the keyboard with your ideas, read, and comment on other science research blogs. This will help you gain recognition in the blogging community.
- Find a blogging platform: Have a look at WordPress, Warwick blogs, Tumblr, and blogger.com to mention a few. Most of these offer a free domain.
- Find an interesting peer-reviewed article or identify a topic from your work to discuss and share your views.
Considerations for Effective Blogging
Have a plan. Decide on the purpose of your blogs and set yourself a few guidelines. You should decide on the word count, format, and frequency of your blogs. Also, you may want to consider your privacy and how much of your research you should reveal.
Some points to consider include:
- Target audience: Who are they and how will you reach them?
- Discoverability: How will you promote your blogs? Will you make interesting comments with a link to your blog using social media?
- Tone: Blogs are informal; therefore, your tone should be conversational and should address the reader directly.
- Shorter blogs are preferable to long essays.
- Use strong and entertaining keywords that will help your blog pop up in web searches.
- Will you add videos and images?
- Be patient: People tend to comment more frequently on platforms such as Twitter compared to a blog. It will take time to build an audience.
- Guest blogs: Writing for well-known bloggers can help you become established.
Learn from the Experts
Have a look at a well-known scientific research blog called ScienceDaily. This scientific blog is written by a husband and wife team (Dan and Michelle Hogan). They are active members of the scientific community and are also involved in editing and teaching science. ScienceDaily features discoveries from around the globe on various scientific topics. This site has become well-known and is supported by the world’s leading universities.
Scientific research blogging can enhance your career as well as encourage young people to take an interest in science. To be effective, you need to be discoverable and social media can help you with this. Would you be interested in giving this a try? Let us know in the comments section below!