Americans' support for science remains strong

Americans' support for science remains strong

A large majority of Americans have favorable views of science and scientists, believing that the benefits from science outweigh any negatives and agree that science and technology will create more opportunities for future generations.

This is according to a survey of more than 1,500 people conducted by the National Science Foundation and is part of a report -- Science and Engineering Indicators -- that the National Science Board provides to the president and Congress every two years.

Kenneth Miller reviews Dover model of standing up for science

Kenneth Miller reviews Dover model of standing up for science

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] -- In a Harrisburg, Pa., Federal courtroom 11 years ago, Brown University biologist Kenneth Miller was the first witness in a historic takedown of Intelligent Design's pretense of scientific relevance. In the context of ongoing culture wars over evolution, climate change, stem cell research and vaccination, Miller will reunite with figures from the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial to review that trial's lessons at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington, D.C., Feb. 13, 2016.

Dark matter scientists on brink of discovering elusive particles

Technological advances are ushering in a new era of understanding in the search for fundamental physical particles - including dark matter - scientists will tell a public event.

Researchers are using analysis of deep space observations together with experiments far underground to hunt for dark matter - an elusive material which, together with dark energy, is thought to account for about 95 per cent of the universe.

Science responds to globalized disease threat to farms and food systems

Farmers and consumers around the world are connected and dependent on each other today in a way that is unprecedented in human history - the average chocolate bar will have ingredients from four or more continents and crop failures in Russia affect the price of bread in the US.

Transnational research collaboration between the US and UK is anticipating and protecting our food supplies from a host of new disease threats to crops, animals and humans and which show no respect for international borders.

Loss of sleep during adolescence may be a diabetes danger

How much slow-wave sleep a teenage boy gets may predict whether he is at risk for insulin resistance and other health issues, according to Jordan Gaines, a Penn State neuroscience researcher.

Boys who experience a greater decline in slow-wave sleep as adolescents have a significantly higher chance of developing insulin resistance than those who more closely maintained their slow-wave sleep as they got older. These boys are then also at greater risk for developing type 2 diabetes, increased visceral fat and impaired attention.

Study of cognitive development in deaf children revisits longstanding debate

Storrs, CT - A team of researchers at the University of Connecticut is reexamining a decades-long debate as to whether deaf children should learn sign language to maximize their potential for optimal development.

Research has shown that children born deaf frequently exhibit learning deficits and as a result, often underperform in school. Yet research on deaf children has also found children from signing families develop language, cognition and literacy on normal timetables.

How learning languages translates into health benefits for society

The advantages of speaking a second language - for health and mental ability - are to come under the spotlight at an event at the AAAS annual meeting in Washington, DC.

Experts in bilingualism will examine how learning a second language at any age not only imparts knowledge and cultural understanding, but also improves thinking skills and mental agility. It can delay brain ageing and offset the initial symptoms of dementia.

Language juggling rewires bilingual brain

Bilinguals use and learn language in ways that change their minds and brains, which has consequences -- many positive, according to Judith F. Kroll, a Penn State cognitive scientist.

"Recent studies reveal the remarkable ways in which bilingualism changes the brain networks that enable skilled cognition, support fluent language performance and facilitate new learning," said Kroll, Distinguished Professor, psychology, linguistics and women's studies.

Nudging science toward openness

The $1,000,000 Preregistration Challenge, launched one month ago by the Center for Open Science (COS), is testing how addressing scientists' incentives can elicit new behaviors and improve the reproducibility of published research. 1,000 researchers will earn $1,000 each for publishing the results of preregistered research.

"We needed a way to catch the attention of busy, practicing scientists," says David Mellor, Project Manager at COS, "to nudge them toward a small change in their workflow that could have a big impact."

Big data and patient-powered research aim to solve complex diseases

Los Angeles -- Over the past forty years, little has been learned about how to prevent, diagnose and effectively treat one of the most complex infectious diseases in the country -- chronic Lyme disease. But now, big data tools like patient registries have the potential to change that.