Science Communication Programs

As part of the SOT Strategic Plan and its focus on increasing communication skills among SOT members and increasing the Society’s influence through science communication, SOT has developed new programs focused on science communication opportunities.

SOT Science Communications Training Award

Designed to enhance members’ ability to effectively communicate and engage with audiences.

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SOT InTOXicating Science Talks

An innovative way to discuss and present scientific research and other toxicology topics.

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SOT Science Communications Training Award

Over a five-year period, SOT is partnering with the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science to train members in the Alda Method© to enhance their ability to effectively communicate and engage with the public, with policymakers, and with fellow scientists.

Individuals who apply for and receive the SOT Science Communications Training Award will attend the Alda Center’s core training program, “The Essentials.” The award and training will be offered twice per year to cohorts of 24 members each and will be fully funded/sponsored by SOT.

About the Training

During the three-hour session, participants will:

  • develop strategies to connect and understand an audience
  • learn to set meaningful realistic communication goals
  • practice approaches to designing a message that will help others connect to you, your work, and why it matters

Rather than focusing on tactics and tips (i.e., do and don’t lists), the Alda Method centers around learning through experience, guided reflection, and peer feedback. This training is about transforming how participants think about communication, which gives them skills that can apply to all forms of communication and all topics, including science.

Tips for a Successful Science Communications Training Award Application

  1. Tell us who you are—not just the scientist you.
    The first question of the application asks for a personal narrative. You do not need to limit your narrative to your professional life. Tell us a story.
  2. Be passionate.
    When asked about your research in the second question, don’t copy and paste a list of accomplishments, but instead, convey a high-level look at your research and why it engages you.
  3. Think bigger.
    While your career goals, as requested in the third question, may be very specific to you, your position, or your research, how science communication can assist you should be looked at from not just your career perspective, but also from an SOT and societal level.
  4. Make it personal.
    For example, there are many examples in the news of poor science communication, but when the application asks for an example of where better communication could make a difference, think about your own experiences and sphere—when did you witness or contribute to a situation that could have used better communication.

Please contact SOT Communications Director Michelle Werts with any questions.

How to Apply

Submit an application to participate in the training being held Friday, October 28, from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm (US EDT, UTC -4) or to automatically be considered for the next workshop to be held in May 2023.

Apply Now

InTOXicating Science Talks

SOT InTOXicating Science Talks highlight toxicology by capturing short (15 minutes or less) talks on video about the motivation behind and importance of the work being conducted by SOT members. These are not scientific presentations but an exploration of science through storytelling and relatable experiences. Essentially, SOT wants to showcase its members’ passion for toxicology!

View Recorded Talks

Participation Timeline

  • September 15, 2022: Submissions open.
  • November 30, 2022: Submissions deadline.
  • December 20, 2022: All applicants notified of results.
  • January 31, 2023: Selected speakers submit a video of their full presentation for feedback.
  • February 15, 2023: Feedback on the presentation is provided.
  • March 21, 2023: Selected speakers deliver their InTOXicating Science Talk during the SOT Annual Meeting and ToxExpo in Nashville, Tennessee.

How to Participate

Create a three-minute-or-less video in which you provide a short preview of your InTOXicating Science Talk by showcasing your topic and the presentation style that you will use. The video quality of the submission is not important since submissions are not expected to be polished video productions.

The deadline to submit an InTOXicating Science Talk proposal is November 30, 2022.

Submit Proposal

Tips for Successful Submissions

  • Focus your talk on one aspect of your life or work.
  • Choose a topic that is new, surprising, interesting, or a twist on a well-known topic.
  • Develop anecdotes, analogies, or examples that illustrate and explain your chosen topic.
  • Share why your topic is important—how does it have an impact?
  • Determine if your talk would benefit from visuals or not—think engaging, simple slides or props.
  • Rehearse before you record your submission.

For additional inspiration, watch the InTOXicating Science Talks that were recorded in March 2022.

Please contact SOT Communications Director Michelle Werts with any questions.