Understanding the Scientific Enterprise: Development and Validation of an Instrument to Measure Grasp of the Social Structure of Science

49 Pages Posted: 31 Mar 2020

See all articles by Joanna Huxster

Joanna Huxster

Environmental Studies Discipline, Eckerd College

Matthew Slater

Bucknell University

Asheley Landrum

College of Media & Communication, Texas Tech University

Date Written: March 6, 2020

Abstract

Significant gaps remain between public opinion and the scientific consensus on many issues. We present the results of three studies for the development and testing of a novel instrument to measure a largely unmeasured aspect of scientific literacy: the enterprise or social structure of science. We posit that this understanding of the scientific enterprise is an important source for the public’s trust in science. Our results indicate that the Social Structure of Science Index (SSSI) is a reliable and valid instrument. We also develop and validate a short version of the SSSI for ease of use in longer surveys.

Keywords: scientific literacy, public understanding of science, instrument development, scientific enterprise, scientific community

Suggested Citation

Huxster, Joanna and Slater, Matthew and Landrum, Asheley, Understanding the Scientific Enterprise: Development and Validation of an Instrument to Measure Grasp of the Social Structure of Science (March 6, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3549988 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3549988

Joanna Huxster (Contact Author)

Environmental Studies Discipline, Eckerd College ( email )

United States

Matthew Slater

Bucknell University ( email )

701 Moore Ave.
Lewisburg, PA 17837
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.mhslater.com

Asheley Landrum

College of Media & Communication, Texas Tech University ( email )

3003 15th Street
Box 43082
Lubbock, TX 79409
United States

HOME PAGE: http://asheleylandrum.com

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