Science content and social context

Document Type



Content analysts have made substantial progress in moving beyond the framework in which science news is assessed primarily in terms of accuracy and adequacy, but content-analytic studies of science news remain under-theorized and too narrowly focused. We recommend that content analysts (1) broaden their scope of inquiry to accommodate the great diversity of outlets and audiences for science news, and (2) offer more explicit and rigorous theoretical accounts of content-analytic data. To facilitate this latter recommendation, we suggest that content analysts borrow as needed from recent work in linguistics and rhetoric and reaffirm and rearticulate the connection between content analytic research and social theory. In addition, we discuss the need for content analysts to develop theories capable of documenting and understanding science news in the emerging era of electronic media.


Content analysis (Communication); Mass media; Science news


Broadcast and Video Studies | Communication Technology and New Media | Journalism Studies | Mass Communication | Science and Technology Studies

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