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Explore tip sheets, guides and articles to learn more about engaging with the media, crafting lay-friendly and engaging talking points about your scientific discoveries, and getting support from the communications team at The Graduate Center.

CUNY Science Communications ToolKit

The CUNY SciComms Toolkit is an online resource for CUNY STEM students, created by GC Science Communications Fellows  to provide tools for honing science communication skills at every level.

Resources by Topic

Media Training
Need help fine tuning your interview skills and messaging complex science to lay audience? We can help. Send us a note if you’d like to schedule one-on-one media training.

Science Media Databases of STEM Experts
The following databases provide science writers and other journalists with access to a variety of experts in STEM fields. If you are interested in engaging with media through story interviews and media briefings, submit your information to the ones that fit your profile and interests.

  • SciLine – AAAS’ database of science experts for journalists
  • Diverse Sources – a database dedicated to promoting the voices and expertise representing a broad range of ethnicities, races, gender and sexual identities, socio-economic status and physical differences
  • Expert Finder – a database of faculty experts in a variety of disciplines
  • gage: Women in STEM – Created by the professional advocacy organization 500 Women Scientists, this database focuses on increasing the expert voices and representation of women scientists in the media
  • She Source – Created by the Women’s Media Center, this service provides journalists with access to women who can provide expertise and analysis across a broad range of issue areas, including the sciences

American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Communication Toolkit
This Communication Toolkit provides guidance for scientists to build skills to more effectively communicate and engage with public audiences, including ways to apply the fundamentals of communication to scientific topics. Sections that may be of particular interest include:

Tip Sheet: Communicating Science to the Public
Rules for communicating your scientific research to the general public whether you’re speaking or writing

Tip Sheet: Engaging All Audiences with Science
Key concepts and ideas for reflecting on your STEM experience through the eyes of your audience

Worksheet: Creating Your Talking Points
Five questions to help you develop a concise, lay-friendly explanation of your scientific research. Includes a real-life example for reference.

Worksheet: Developing Your Elevator Pitch

Worksheet: Prepping for an ASRC Science Café Talk
Designed to guide scientists who plan to participate in the ASRC’s weekly Science Café Talks, during which researchers have about five minutes to explain their work to a mixed audience of varying backgrounds, completing this worksheet may be a helpful exercise for other situations in which you will need to communicate with the general public.

Guide: Writing an Op-Ed
“Consider writing a newspaper op-ed, or opinion story, which can be an effective channel for direct communication with the public, in order to achieve specific public engagement with science goals. Op-eds provide a forum for injecting scientific information and/or viewpoints into a pressing issue, or to advocate for a specific policy aim.”
From the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Communication Toolkit

Tool/Service: Science Sketches
Science Sketches are short, accessible videos — made by scientists — about scientific research across the globe. Browse the videos on this site for inspiration, then check put the how to guide to create and submit your own.

Video Inspiration: 5 Levels
In this video series from WIRED, an expert explains complex subjects in five levels of complexity. Use these videos as a guide for translating your research to a wide range of audiences.

Slideshow: Social Media for Promoting Research

Created by Coralie Carlson, Social Media Coordinator, The Graduate Center, CUNY

Title slide: Using Social media to promote research; created by Coralie Carlson

Twitter Accounts to Follow

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CUNY Science


General CUNY

List: GC Accounts *
List: People of CUNY *

General Science

List: General Scientists *
List: Science Writers *
List: Physicists *
List: Nanoscience/Nanotechnology
List: Climate Experts
List: Science, Climate and the Environment

Hashtags to Use

Note that each word in a hashtag should be capitalized for screen reader accessibility.


Resources at the CUNY Graduate Center

Mina Rees Library
The Graduate Center Library is the hub of CUNY’s scholarly production. The library’s print collection primarily supports the Graduate Center curriculum, while the library’s digital resources, active reference and instruction services, and robust resource sharing support faculty and graduate research.

Teaching and Learning Center
The TLC prepares new college teachers for their entry into the classroom, guides developing teachers as they refine their practices, and helps experienced teachers think through how to best apply what they’ve learned in the next stages of their careers, whether those careers be inside or outside the classroom.

The Writing Center
The Writing Center assists current and past graduate students in the cultivation of advanced skills and habits with respect to both their research and their writing through individual consultations, workshops, and other programming.

Research and Sponsored Programs
This office is the central administrative unit for overseeing GC applications for, and awards of, governmental and foundation funding. The RSP is ready to answer questions about proposal preparation, submission, and administration for the entire GC community.

Office of Career Planning and Professional Development
This office supports GC students in exploring and understanding career paths and achieving their professional goals. Services include career advisement, writing support, events and workshops, and digital resources.