Science communication is a big part of my life as in my opinion, there's absolutely no point doing science if no-one hears about it and can use it.
I am a regular volunteer at the Oxford University Museums, especially the Museum of Natural History, where I teach life sciences to kids at family friendly events such as their 'Science Saturdays'.
I designed and run a forensics 'whodunnit' stall at Wow!How?, an annual science festival run by the museum with over 3000 visitors aged from 3 to 83. My murder mystery stall featured live maggots, fingerprinting, microscopy and even DNA analysis (using creative license!) so the kids could find the guilty suspect. I also volunteered at the Big Bang Fair in the NEC with the Oxford Silk Group.
I won Oxford's first Science Slam, a competitive science communication event where you had to present your research in under 10 minutes to a lay audience however you wanted, but the audience held the power to vote for the most entertaining. I likened my undergraduate research to the Hunger Games in my talk "You can run but you can't hide: a story about ladybirds" with an overly melodramatic use of background music and highly tenuous analogies. It's now available to watch on Youtube.
In 2014, I turned my hand to public lectures and created "Secrets of Sex", an adult-only light-hearted romp through the weird and wonderful world of animal sex lives and the evolution of reproductive behaviours. I performed a 45 minute version of the talk at the Winchester Science Festival and the Green Man Festival, and a 25 minute version at the Royal Institution's Lates, which you can watch here. I wrote another public talk about sexism in studying sexual selection called "Sex Science's Sex Bias" which I performed at QEDcon 2015. I've compered at the Winchester Science Festival and the FameLab Oxford Finals, and I hosted an 'in conversation with' event with Charlie McDonnell at the Sheldonian Theatre. I've even tried my hand at stand-up comedy, performing an 8 minute set about my research on sex and evolution at Bright Club, a comedy night by academics.
Not content with communicating science to as many people face to face as possible, I have taken to the internet and the power of online video! My YouTube channel Shed Science is where I find the most interesting bits of biology and try to present them in the most interesting way possible, be that making a song parody or painting my face orange. At the time of writing, I have over 47,000 subscribers, and over 900,000 views.
In 2015 I was GE's Creator in Residence, which means I was lucky enough to visit the USA and fly in helicopters, drive trains, interview Bill Nye and Neil DeGrasse Tyson, and go to a film premiere plus so many other exciting things, all in the name of science! I wrote, co-produced and presented 15 videos for GE's YouTube channel about the science behind upcoming films, new science GE is currently researching, and the latest news in science and technology.
I won a national short film competition run by the Guardian and OUP with my one minute video "Without Evolution", hopefully convincing everyone that you can't do biology without understanding evolution. I'm also a guest speaker on several podcasts with other science YouTubers, and presented a pilot for a CBeebies natural history programme with the BBC.
If you would like me at one of your science communication events, let me know!