View our picture gallery from the Summer School showing a selection of the full range of official photos taken.  If there are specific photos you would like then get in touch (NB: not all images are shown in this gallery) [email protected]

ABSW Science & Technology Journalism Summer School 2023

Downloads from speakers who gave permission for their presentations to be shared

Interview Skills: Alok Jha
Pitching Skills: Alexander McNamara
Stats 101: Kevin McConway
Getting workplace ready: Emma Wilkinson
Getting eyes on your stories: Anne Marie Conlon
How to write a twitter thread: Anne Marie Conlon

Session recordings to watch on demand

NB: Some sessions were interactive and therefore not available online or as recordings

Opening Remarks: Andy Extance, Chair, ABSW; Brian Lin, Director Editorial Content Strategy, EurekAlert! and Tanya Wood, Deputy Director of Communications, KCL & Plenary. Career paths in science journalism

Career paths in science journalism

How do you become a science journalist? What's the best way to build up experience when you're still  starting out? And once you have your first job, what career paths are available and how do you work your way through the ranks? In this session, a panel of science journalists in the first few years of their careers will discuss how they started out and where their careers have taken them, with plenty of time to ask questions about their experiences.

Producer/Chair: Matthew Warren, European News Editor, Science

Speakers: Rosa Furneaux, Investigative Journalist, The Bureau of Investigative Journalism; Grace Browne, Staff Writer, WIRED; Robin Bisson, Research Fortnight & Nick Petrić Howe, Senior Multimedia Editor, Nature

Getting 'workplace' ready

Setting up as a freelance?  All you need to know to be a successful freelance science writer, including: self assessment tax, invoicing, negotiating rates, & getting paid. Finding work: identifying new outlets & approaching them. Building your brand: streamlining your online profile, building and your CV & finding your community.

Producer/Chair: Katharine Sanderson, ABSW Board Member

Speaker: Emma Wilkinson, freelance journalist specialising in medicine and health, co-founder 'Freelancing for Journalists' (book, podcast and community).

Statistics 101

A session on the basic statistics terms you need to understand to report on scientific research, how to interpret stats and report accurately and with clarity, and the 'red flags' to look out for in press releases.

Producer/Chair: Alex O'Brien, ABSW Vice-Chair

Speaker: Kevin McConway, Emeritus Professor of Applied Statistics, Open University

Online visibility: Getting eyes on your stories

You may be able to write text that grips readers, but how do you make sure that the articles get read in the first place? What can you do as a writer to make sure that search engines come to your articles first? What should your headline be? How should you think about search engines as you write and structure your story? Does this change whether an outlet is paywalled or freely readable? And how much of this responsibility is the writer's, compared to editors and other specialists that outlets might employ? In this session people who know best how science media can grab attention will answer all these questions. 

Producer/Chair: Andy Extance, ABSW Chair

Speakers: Anne Marie Conlon, Chief Editor, Audience and Engagement, Nature magazine, Alexander McNamara, Editor-in-Chief, Live Science & Alice Mason, The Conversation.

Digital media

Readers use an increasingly diverse set of digital channels to get their science news - so how can science writers adapt and ensure they have the tools in their arsenal to reach these audiences? From TikTok to Twitter threads, we take a look at some of the other forms of digital media journalists can use to communicate science.

Producer/Chair: Matthew Warren, European News Editor, Science

Speakers: David Stock, Senior Video Producer, New Scientist, Anne Marie Conlon, Chief Editor, Audience and Engagement, Nature Magazine & Flora Graham, Senior Editor, Nature Briefing

AI as a journalism tool: a strategy for journalists

How to deal with the ethical, editorial and technical opportunities and risk of machine learning and generative AI. Lessons from the LSE's five year old global JournalismAI project.

Producer/Chair: Alex O'Brien, ABSW Vice-Chair

Speaker: Professor Charlie Beckett, Professor, Department of Media and Communications, London School of Economics

Diverse voices - the key to diverse audiences

A session on awareness of your own biases, and on using diverse voices as your sources.

Producer/Chair: Katharine Sanderson, ABSW Board Member

Speakers: Priya Joi, Science Journalist & Author, Dhruti Shah, Journalist & Author & Shivani Dave, Journalist, Broadcaster & Physicist.

Building resilience: Surviving in a critical and visible environment

Psychologically, journalism and writing are tougher than many other professions. You must deal with regularly having ideas abruptly rejected and tough criticism of your work. Your colleagues will hopefully be firm but considerate in their feedback, but your readers may not.  With remote working becoming increasingly common, and many science writers and journalists being freelance, isolation can be an issue. Meanwhile, scientific issues can be very polarizing, making those covering them targets for trolling and other attacks. Covering psychologically harrowing topics could also lead to vicarious trauma. In this session an expert will explore to what extent it’s possible to deal with all these issues, and how best to do so.

Producer: Andy Extance, Chair ABSW

Chair: Aisling Irwin, ABSW Board Member

Speakers: Katy Georgiou, Psychotherapist, Journalist, Author & creator and host of Sound Affects Podcast exploring music and mental health; Dhruti Shah, Journalist & Author, John Crowley, Editor, Trainer & Consultant

Buy Katy Georgiou’s book: How To Understand and Deal with Stress

The Association of British Science Writers is registered in England and Wales under company number 07376343 at 76 Glebe Lane, Barming, Maidstone, Kent, ME16 9BD.
Log in | Powered by White Fuse