Scientists often use specialized jargon terms while communicating with laymen.
Most of them don't realize the harmful effects of this practice.
In a new study, people exposed to jargon when reading about subjects like autonomous vehicles and surgical robots
later said they were less interesting in science than others who read about the same topics, but without the use of specialized terms.
They also felt less informed about science and less qualified to discuss science topics.
It's noteworthy that it made no difference if the jargon terms were defined in the text.
Even when the terms were defined, readers still felt the same lack of engagement as readers who read jargon that wasn't explained.
The problem is that the mere presence of jargon sends a discouraging message to readers.
Hillary Schulman, the author of the study, asserts that specialized words are a signal.
Jargon tells people that the message isn't for them.
There's an even darker side to how people react to jargon.
In another study, researchers found that reading scientific articles containing jargon led people to doubt the actual science.
They found the opposite, when a text is easier to read.
Then, people are more persuaded.
Thus, it's important to communicate clearly when talking about complex science subjects.
This is especially true with issues related to public health, like the safety of new medications and the benefits of vaccines.
Schulman concedes that the use of jargon is appropriate with scientific audiences.
But scientists who want to communicate with the general public need to modify their language.
They need to eliminate jargon.
Questions nine to eleven are based on the passage you have just heard.
Q9: What does the passage say about the use of jargon terms by experts?
Q10: What do researchers find about people reading scientific articles containing jargon terms?
Q11: What does Schulman suggest scientists do when communicating with the general public?