Since 2012 the Baboon Films project has offered Honors Biology students a class where they can practice mass-communicating about the science they are learning in class. Funded by the National Science Foundation and in conjunction with University of Notre Dame researcher, Dr. Elizabeth Archie, the class emphasizes hands-on writing and content creating in the area of life science.
The class is co-taught by Ms. Shellie Harshberger and Mr. Kevin McNulty. For every ninety minutes of science instruction, students get thirty minutes of science communication instruction. McNulty traveled to Kenya in 2012 and 2013 to gather many of the media assets the students use in their communications. Every fall, Harshberger and McNulty take students to the University of Notre Dame to meet Dr. Archie, explore a parisitology lab, and hear talks from other researchers who have returned from the field.
Over the course of the year, students create showcase portfolios that highlight the communications they produce. Students learn to write for larger audiences, communicate clearly about science, manipulate images for effective distribution, edit films and distribute them to wider audiences, and to house all of their work in a showcase portfolio.