When the first call for papers went out for the PCST conference 2012 in Florence, many researchers reacted to the theme of ‘professionalization’. From their suggestions for contributions it immediately became clear that the term was considered from a great variety of angles. Quite a few suggestions could be linked to the question of how to educate and train scientist and science communication students to perform well in science communication activities. Four speakers participated in a session focussed on this issue:
- Midori Takahashi, PhD, Shizuoka Science Museum in Japan: ‘Training Local Citizens as Science Communicators in a Science Museum as a Means of Cultivation of Science and Technology.’
- Liesbeth de Bakker, MSc, Freudenthal Institute for Science and Mathematics Education in The Netherlands: ‘Empowering science PhD students for engagement-oriented science communication.’
- Dr Ann van der Auweraert, Delft University of Technology in The Netherlands: ‘Science in dialogue training.’
- Dr Will J Grant, Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science: ‘Development and challenges in science communication education.’ Caroline Wehrmann, assistant professor in Science Communication of Delft University of Technology in The Netherlands, moderated this session.
Five main questions arose: who has to be trained or educated in science communication, which educational approaches are used, how to design programmes or courses, what are the insights of evaluation of education programmes and what are the challenges in educating science communication practitioners? In this paper each of the above five questions will be
addressed based on the four presentations that were given.
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