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  • Scientific communication - part I - Prof. Luciano Ragno - a.y. 2016/2017

    LUCIANO RAGNO, professional journalist, has authored investigative reports on all continents, first as a special correspondent and then as managing editor of Il Messaggero. He has conceived and edited numerous radio and television broadcasts, and written more than twenty books on science and medicine for the general public (two of which have been translated into English). He wrote one of the first books on assisted reproduction, authoring, for Adnkronos the volume entitled Un figlio ad ogni costo ("a child at all costs"). His latest books are Storia dell'endoscopia digestiva in Italia... Parlano i testimoni del tempo ("the history of digestive endoscopy in Italy - contemporary witnesses speak"), written with prof. Cosentino, and Cento anni di Chirurgia ("one hundred years of surgery"), with prof. Eugenio Santoro. 

    For almost forty years as a professional journalist, Luciano Ragno has been interested in medical and science journalism for the general public. He was one of Italy's first journalists to introduce medical and scientific topics into newspapers, first as editor at Il Messaggero in Rome, and then, for the same publication, as special correspondent and managing editor until retirement. At Il Messaggero, he was responsible for a weekly insert entitled "La nostra salute" - "our health." 



    This is a two-year course. The first part  will be carried out in the first year; the second part in the second year of the degree course. Due to the high specificity of the discipline, for a better supply of contents and for a better comprehension by the students, the lectures wil be provided during the entire term of the Course.

    The principal aim of the discipline is the undestanding of the importance of scientific communication and how to divulgate scientific results to common people.


    Prerequisite: Newspapers, television programmes, radio programmes, online and internet information

    Preparatory: None


    UNIT 1: Scientific communication trough printed paper (daily newspapers, weekly newspapers, monthly newspapers, scientific papers) and online (internet) news.

    Knowledge and understanding: The principal aim of the discipline is to provide students with knowledge to become experts, able to explain scientific results and topics by traditional communication channels.

    Applying knowledge and understanding: Applying the knowledge acquired during the course, the student will be able to discuss with reporters and journalists.

    Making judgements: During the course a continuous monitoring will be carried out by the teacher

    Communication: A particular attention will be given to the acquisition of communication skills by the students. 

    Learning skills: The educational aim of the discipline can be reached by a strict and continuos collaboration between the teacher and the students, that entails constant and up-to-date conversations.


    At first, the techniques of reproductive medicine during the different historical periods (from the beginning until now) will be described. Secondly, the lectures will focus on the behaviour of experts in assisted-reproductive medicine in relation to journalists. Each student will write down a scientific article, and all articles will be harvested in a unique printed dossier.

    Practical exercises

    ° drafting of a written text after each lesson and direct proofreading

    ° printing of written dossier 

    ° reading of one or more newspapers in class 


    Un figlio a ogni costo

    • Autore: Luciano Ragno
    • Edizione: adnkronos, Dicembre 1984, Roma

    There are no specific books on the argument.

    Direct interviews of the students to well-known journalists.

    During the course, a well-known journalist or scientist will be interviewed by the students by direct phone calls. 



    Reference unit: unit 1

    Date: Sixth Lesson week


    - Written test: writing of an article on subjects related to assisted reproduction medicine and to biotechnologies

    - Oral exam: the students will comment on their written articles and will respond to specific questions 


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