Kenyon’s distinctive Science Journal fosters collaboration

Transforming Complex Neuroscience Concepts into Public Understanding: The Impact of the Scientific Kenyon Journal on Future Scientists

In its eighth year, the Scientific Kenyon journal is providing advanced neuroscience students with a unique opportunity to write academic papers and reach a broader audience. This journal was started by Hewlet McFarlane, a professor of neuroscience, who believes that scientists have an obligation to communicate their work in a way that everyone can understand.

Senior seminar students participating in the project are required to write two articles: a National Science Foundation grant proposal and a Scientific American-style article aimed at a general audience. These articles are typically 3,500 words long, and students receive support from a team of library staff who assist with copy editing, fact checking, and layout. One of the key benefits of the project is learning how to effectively communicate scientific concepts without using technical jargon.

For Dani Buch ’24, the journal project has been influential in her decision to study neuroscience. She describes it as her “baby” and appreciates being part of the process of transforming articles into something tangible for the public. The journal serves as a platform for students to showcase their science communication skills and original work.

McFarlane emphasizes the importance of writing skills in all aspects of life, regardless of one’s chosen career path. He believes that converting thoughts and ideas into written form is essential for effective communication, especially in the field of science. Without good writing skills, success in science can be challenging. Source Media Properties used an experimental artificial intelligence tool to generate the first draft of this article, which was then reviewed and edited by a professional editor before publication.

Overall, the Scientific Kenyon journal provides advanced neuroscience students with an excellent opportunity to develop their science communication skills and share their research with a wider audience.


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