Activity 5.1 - Translate the evidence for the audience

1 - Introduction

Remember that non-specialists are not the primary audience for a scientific journal, so you will have to do the hard work and translate numbers into more manageable terms. There are key differences between the person that sits down to read a journal article, and someone who might not be seeking out your work. Here are a few with some implications:

  • Literacy and numeracy skills will vary, so removing this as a barrier where possible is essential. 
  • Even if fairly numerate, a non-specialist audience might not have the time to dig deep into the numbers in your research. 
  • Non-specialist audiences are more likely to understand the significance of numbers if they have something relatable to compare it to. 
  • Non-specialists may need additional support in understanding the risk of something e.g. actual risk versus perceived risk; individual versus population risk; absolute versus relative risk. 
  • Wider audiences increasingly consume content in a ‘snack-like’ way, wanting smaller snippets of information that can be consumed quickly e.g. Twitter. This has implications for the statistics you choose to communicate.