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Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering
5

Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

(OP)
The general perception of science and engineering in our society plays a pivotal role in defining the future of those fields, both in terms of employment, funding and general development. One of the recent major emissaries of science and engineering in pop culture is the TV sitcom, Big Bang Theory.

I am continually told by those that know me as someone that will use any excuse to advocate for science appreciation and science literacy, that I’d love Big Bang Theory. I’m told that “it’s making science cool again”, that “it humanizes scientists” and that “it’s spreading science to the masses”; they consider the show to have a positive influence on the public’s appreciation or interest in science. This also appears to be echoed by the show runners/writers themselves. So I watched a number of episodes and, unsurprisingly for me, have developed quite a strong opinion on the subject. As my purpose is to gauge the reaction of the engineering community to the show, I’ll withhold giving my take on it until later, in order to not direct or enflame the conversation from the get-go.

So, eng-tips community, what is your take on the impact Big Bang Theory has on the general public’s perception of science and engineering?
1) Positive – the show improves the public’s perception of science, leading to a positive impact on the field
2) Negative – the show is harmful the public’s perception of science, leading to a negative impact on the field
3) Neutral – it’s just a comedy show; it has no significant impact on the field

Regarding the “impact on the field”, I’d consider the following:
- Influences the scientific literacy of the public
- Influences the public’s appreciation of science/scientists
- Influences a young person’s desire to enter a scientific field (male and female are different issues)
- Influences the likelihood the public will advocate for an increase in funding of scientific research

Let me be clear, I’m not here to discuss the merits of it as a comedy show. Certainly whether you find the show funny or not will influence your reaction to the show as a positive, damaging or neutral advocate for science but try to dissociate the two.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

You mean other than stereotyping every possible nerdish personality trait that the general public had already come to expect?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CmYDgncMhXw

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
Siemens PLM Software Inc.
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To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

As a scientist/engineer, it's impossible to be impartial and understand how it appears to those who aren't like me/us. I love it. Apart from the canned laughter track. I don't think it furthers our cause though, just digs the stereotypical images a bit deeper. The continual in-joke about Dr vs MS is probably beyond most.

- Steve

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I stooped watching it ages ago merely because of the script writing which I feel had lost all of its charm and repetitive nature of the plots.

It doesn't annoy me like a bad episode of mythbusters does, where they actually claim to be doing an experiment but the experiment has stupid great holes in it (that being said I usually enjoy mythbusters on the rare occasions I watch it). On the other hand BBT does perpetuate science as magic, which is bad with a capital B.

So overall, (3) neutral.

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I watch the show mainly for penny.

I think it is positive that higher education comes into play, meaning more young'uns will actually be confronted with it.
As an engineer, I find it annoyingly funny how the other scientifists look down on Wolowitz, as "merely" an engineer. He has been into space, you know...
That said, I agree with GregLocock that Mythbusters is also highly entertaining (again, Kari does add to that).

I'm pro.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

i'm somewhere between neutral and negative.

as JohnR posted, i think it takes stereotypes ad absurdum. and now, presumably 'cause the nerds don't have enough appeal, now they all have girl friends. it is suffering from being run for too long ... they've pretty much done everything to everyone.

one episode i liked was when Leonard and Penny were fighting, and Sheldon relived his experiences growing up (in a trailer park in Texas).

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I would say that its impact is positive, and there are subtle clues throughout the show that the producers take it seriously enough to understand that there are actually scientists and engineers in their viewing audience. Take a look at the white boards in the background of a lot of their scenes. The equations are real - and the answers (where shown) are correct. My wife is always asking me, "So, what's that stuff on the board? Is it right?" and I tell her what the equation is and what it's used for. Meanwhile, something is going on in the plot...something about Sheldon being obnoxious and Penny being promiscuous. So, she ends up missing most of the show but she gets a 20 minute lesson in physics. On that basis, I rate it a "1".

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying the show isn't entertaining or that the characters haven't provided their share of humor, just that it tends to amplify, often to an extreme level, some of the most blatant personality traits that many non-technical people have assigned to 'nerds' and other socially inept persons. Granted, a lot of humor is based on the preceived personalities and behaviors of various groups in our society and so perhaps this time around it simply hits a bit closer to home winky smile

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
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Siemens PLM:
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To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I rate it a "1". ... out of 10 ? bigsmile

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

On balance, i'd say anything that portrays science in a positive light (or a comedic one) is a good thing, even if the stereotypes can be a little excessive.

It must be said that 3 of the 4 characters are PHD academics, so as an engineer I can sort of dissociate myself from THAT stereotype. Except for Wolowitz, who ironically is an engineer, but I dont think most of the audience would see him as one, more like the other "sciency nerds". The engineering faculty at my university certainly has some "raj" types. If the four of them were practising engineers and went to work 9-5 each day, then I'd think the stereotype had gone too far.

Sam
Brisbane, Australia

Young Engineer. American old west enthusiast

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Doesn't the saying go "Any publicity is good publicity" if true then based on that alone it's difficult to argue it as too negative.

Certainly it does enforce some stereotypes, although at least some of my colleagues and fellow students when at uni already did that.

Heck, the perceptions of engineers already seems different in the US v UK so how this show could reinforce both perceptions is a bit of a conundrum.

Plus the lead character got the girl, what's not to like about that.

The fact it focuses on an Academic situation rather than industry may mislead somewhat on the Engineering front but in reality the only Engineer on the show is really just a supporting character.

Posting guidelines FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm? (probably not aimed specifically at you)
What is Engineering anyway: FAQ1088-1484: In layman terms, what is "engineering"?

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

To me one of the funniest scenes on the show was when all of the main characters (except Penny) were in the office of the department chairman/dean/whatever. The chairman addressed each of them in turn, "good morning Dr. Cooper, Dr. Kuthrapali, Dr. Hoffstadter, Mr. Wolowitz". To which Howard replied "I have a Master's degree!" And the chairman flippantly said "Who doesn't?". That is exactly the type of attitude many department chairmen that I've known have had. They view a Master's degree as a consolation prize for the people who weren't able to cut it in the Ph.D. program. I don't share this attitude, but I laughed for a while at that scene because they captured it so perfectly.

I'm pro. It's a great show that provides exposure of fairly sophisticated physics concepts to young viewers who probably would not be exposed to it otherwise. And they manage to do it in a very entertaining way. So what if it overemphasizes the stereotypes of scientists/nerds/geeks/etc? If you're an engineer and you can't find somebody you personally know that reminds you in some way of one of the characters on the show, they you're not looking very hard.

Maui

www.EngineeringMetallurgy.com

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Yep, that Dr/Mr scene was one of my favourites. My office has a kind of Dr/Mr dividing line down the middle of it.

- Steve

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I don't want my kids to watch it. Too much implied sexual content.

The amount of actual science is very small, and it has become just another sit com, with just a different twist.

However it has given science, and science fiction people a place to be seen (Brent Spiner, etc.). However, it dosen't seem to have a best view of engineers.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

OK, using your criteria:

- Influences the scientific literacy of the public
No, it's a comedy, not educational TV.

- Influences the public’s appreciation of science/scientists

Yeah, the characters are all dumb TV stereotypes, but they're a lot more like human beings than MOST characterizations of scientists you see on TV.

- Influences a young person’s desire to enter a scientific field (male and female are different issues)

I'd say that the show's underlying message to kids who are already naturally drawn to science etc. is that you can have a community and be loved without having to pretend that you're stupid just to fit in. Being a geek is cool in its own way. That's a message that LOTS of bright kids need to hear, loud and clear, over and over again, because the overwhelming din of their peers and society at large is a message entirely contradictory to that. Most kids don't even survive middle school with their natural passion for science intact.

- Influences the likelihood the public will advocate for an increase in funding of scientific research

No, they don't moralize about how valuable science is to society- and they do their work because it's what they're interested in and what they love, not because it's going to make them rich or there's some burning need for their work to solve some dire problem facing mankind. Does that make it more likely that the public will support pure research? Doubtful, but isn't that asking a lot about a TV comedy?

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

If you compare it with other comedy shows set in more or less work related contexts then I think it quickly rises above the average, and as Moltenmetal says, at least they are depicted actively doing what they are good at because they enjoy it and get something out of it.

Becker - what do you learn about being a doctor?

2.5 dumbasses - what do you learn about songwriting?

Teachers - actually amazingly accurate depiction of life in the UK state system, apparently.

Cheers- yes, working in a pub is just like that.

Porridge? Steptoe and Son? On the Buses?

Cheers

Greg Locock


New here? Try reading these, they might help FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm?

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

If you want a fairly recent comparison for Scientists/Engineers/Technicians then you could look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Better_Off_Ted.

I only caught a couple of episodes but from memory I'd say the Big Bang's treatment of Scientists is fairly flattering in comparison.

Posting guidelines FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm? (probably not aimed specifically at you)
What is Engineering anyway: FAQ1088-1484: In layman terms, what is "engineering"?

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Quote (Teamtoken (Automotive) )

Except for Wolowitz, who ironically is an engineer, but I dont think most of the audience would see him as one, more like the other "sciency nerds".

I don't think so, Cooper is a theoretical physicist, Hofstaedtler works with lasers and god knows what Raj does, but Wolowitz is the only one who actually makes things, like mechanical parts of the toilet on a spaceship.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Thats true, out of all of them he's probably the most useful. People here who watch the show will probably remember this hilarious critique of engineers from Sheldon

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WMMOXdkV16A

Sam
Brisbane, Australia

Young Engineer. American old west enthusiast

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Confession. My daughter sent me an Amazon voucher for my recent birthday and I blew it on BBT season 6, which has just come out on DVD in my region. It's still in its packaging, but I plan to open it tonight. I did see a few of them on obscure UK TV channels, but I kind of like closing the curtains, locking the doors and watching a whole series, end to end. I did the whole League Of Gentlemen, including the movie in a single week.

- Steve

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

==> Thats true, out of all of them he's probably the most useful.
Yeah, especially (or perhaps unless in this case) if you need to use the bathroom on the space station.

I'm not sure I agree with the "most useful". I would stipulate that the usefulness of the engineer is more obvious and apparent, but not necessarily with most useful.

Good Luck
--------------
As a circle of light increases so does the circumference of darkness around it. - Albert Einstein

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Kingnero said it first. Penny.

It's entertainment. I'm neutral on it. I don't know that 99% of the viewing audience have any concept what-so-ever of most of the subject matter, including me, except for the mechanical stuff.

It is better to have enough ideas for some of them to be wrong, than to be always right by having no ideas at all.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

In answer to the actual question:

Will it influence the public's scientific literacy? Very little if at all. On those occasions where they go into some detail about a scientific concept, if it's over the watcher's head, then it's going to stay over the watcher's head. If it's not, then you're already at or beyond that literacy point.

Will it influences the public’s appreciation of science/scientists? I think it's going to reinforce one's own perception about science and geek whatever that perception happens to be.

Will it influences a young person’s desire to enter a scientific field (male and female are different issues)? Maybe, but only if that person already had at least some interest in science to begin with.

Will it influences the likelihood the public will advocate for an increase in funding of scientific research? No. The current financial situation in the USA, with the total debt, fiscal cliff, deficit spending, yada, yada, yaha, completely overwhelms the general public's thinking about scientific research funding.

The show it what it is. An entertaining sitcom that, as others have said, would probably not succeed without Penny. Penny is the "normal" character that the general public identifies with and without that character, the general public would lose interest. The fact that she's also very attractive doesn't hurt in the slightest.

Good Luck
--------------
As a circle of light increases so does the circumference of darkness around it. - Albert Einstein

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

(OP)
Some great replies, thanks for your contribution to the discussion.

Firstly, I’d like to clarify that I do not feel that this show ought to do something positive for science. It is for entertainment, not for educational purposes (as molten pointed out) nor is it designed to advance the sciences. However, I feel that there is perception amongst people, at least those in my social circle, that this show does provide some benefit to science. I even get the impression that some feel I, being an advocate for science, should be somewhat grateful to the show.

I disagree with this position.

The Portrayal of Science
Science is portrayed as this nebulous, unapproachable, difficult process. When “science” is done in the show, it’s usual a character toiling away trying to solve a blackboard full of incredibly complex equations. None of these are defined or explained; the audience is taught not to care what it’s about, just that it’s “science”. It reinforces two dangerous (but very popular) ideas: 1) science is unapproachable and 2) #1 doesn’t matter because you really don’t need to give a crap about it; some nerds will do “science” so you can get a smaller phone.

This is echoed by the Penny’s (who embodies “normal” society) reaction to “science”. She is at times utterly dismissive of it (the “science” becomes the brunt of the joke when she enters the room...hold for 5 seconds of laugh track and reaction shots...and....) or, at best, treats “science” as permissible (mainly due to its irrelevancy).

Some have brought up the good point that the characters appear to have a genuine passion for science. I agree and this, to an extent, is positive. However, the beauty and joy that they see in science is certainly not translated to the “normal” characters, or the audience for that matter. If the show was truly respectful towards science, it would show case it as something wonderful and awe-inspiring, instead of the facilitator of some one-liner.

The Portrayal of Science - Men
Either Sheldon has aspergers and we are laughing at his mental issues or he is an apathetic, neurotic, anti-social, snob (or somewhere in between...which could hardly be an improvement). He looks down on other characters (constantly mocking their intelligence), he is jealous or trivializes others accomplishments, he makes no attempt to be comprehendible, he is reclusive to an extreme – all traits that the public would prescribe to their version of a stereotypical scientist. He is entirely unlikable. The only reason why people like the character is that they can laugh at how ridiculous he is.

Raj and Howard are just token scientist characters:
1) Terribly dated hair, clothes, style
2) Sheepish and meek (both emotionally and physically)
3) Like videogames, boardgames, “nerdy” TV and movies
4) Anti-social
5) Have “nerd” voices (strong Indian accident for the one and nasally, mousy for the other)
6) Absolutely zero “street smarts”

Although the use of extreme stereotypes is certainly not new in sitcoms, for a show that is paraded as being for and/or by scientifically inclined people, it certainly does scientifically inclined people no favours. It compounds an already negative few that is prevalent in the general population.

But…but…look at Leonard, he’s intelligent AND (slightly) “normal”. The very fact that this is treated as a surprising combination of characterizes further emphasizes the false dichotomy between intelligence and sociability. He is used as an exception that proves the rule that you can be either scientifically inclined or normal.

The Portrayal of Science - Women
The most clear cut example of this false dichotomy is observed in how woman are portrayed:

Penny (representing “normal” females) – blonde, hot, lively, friendly, charismatic, a little stupid (but it’s ok because intelligence is not an important or desirable quality in females apparently), popular

Sheldon’s girlfriend – glasses, kind of frumpy, cold, demanding

Howard’s girlfriend – glasses (ubiquitous amongst intelligent woman), shrill voice, naïve to societal norms, “could be hot if she tried” (lose the glasses, dress better, put on makeup…you know, be “normal”), helpless (to the point it overshadows her intelligence), shy

Notice that calling them Sheldon and Howard’s girlfriend is quite apt because they aren’t portrayed in the show as independent people; they only exist in the show to be girlfriends. Penny on the other hand is quite independent and usually carries an independent storyline (normally revolving around her being hot and/or normal).

Which of the three do you think young girls would desire to be?

Using my criteria:
Scientific Literacy - does not touch it. It is purposefully designed to be over the head of most of its audience. Although the show does not need to educate people on science, it could be a great platform for it (a little explanation here and there, talk about recent advances in science…I think there was an episode on the Higgs, I haven’t seen it though)
Appreciation for Science – very little (and I’m often told that it is). Again, could be so much more
Young People into Science - my biggest issue with the show is that it further perpetuates the false dichotomy that you can be either scientifically inclined or normal. I feel it’s a deterrent, especially for women.
Funding – no effect. This one was a stretch, I don’t expect a sitcom to have this kind of influence.

The show obviously puts a great deal of attention into getting the science right and understanding nerd culture. It’s obviously designed by scientifically inclined people and appears to be designed for similar people. It could be what others would have me believe this show is, a great and positive emissary for science into pop culture. But it falls so short of that and, as I’ve argued, actually is quite damaging.

If it wants to be just another sitcom, fine. But my blood boils when I’m told “it’s good for science”.

(Also, Cajun, that Einstein quote in your signature is one of my favourites from him, great stuff. It reminds me of a T.H. Huxley quote, which speaks to me deeply:

“The known is finite, the unknown infinite; intellectually we stand on an islet in the midst of an illimitable ocean of inexplicability. Our business in every generation is to reclaim a little more land.”)

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

For what it's worth, Mayim Bialik, who plays Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler on the show (whom rconnor described as "Sheldon’s girlfriend"), actually has a Ph.D in neuroscience from UCLA: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayim_Bialik

John R. Baker, P.E.
Product 'Evangelist'
Product Engineering Software
Siemens PLM Software Inc.
Industry Sector
Cypress, CA
Siemens PLM:
UG/NX Museum:

To an Engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

(OP)
I'd argue that further proves my point. The show takes a brilliant, beautiful, interesting, seemingly sociable, scientifically inclined, multi-talented young woman and turns her into a mock-able stereotype. She could play herself and she'd be an amazing role-model for budding scientists.

Most of the characters on this show are like Urkel. Sure, they're lovable but no one wants to be Urkel.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I find it greatly amusing when people think a sit-com television show does anything for public perception, other than give some laughs.

Those who have their opinion of science and/or scientists changed (for the better or worse) by watching 'Big Bang Theory' are not the kind of people who should be allowed to have an opinion on science, they should be euthanized.

It's a comedy show. Written for cheap laughs, with the occasional witty bit thrown in.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I forgot to mention the overwhelming benefit of that show: it allows me to describe a former roommate of mine in uni as a way creepier version of Sheldon Cooper, and suddenly people understand...

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

A creepier version of Sheldon? He must have been some character.

Good Luck
--------------
As a circle of light increases so does the circumference of darkness around it. - Albert Einstein

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

The extra features on the season #6 DVD are well worth watching. Real space stuff.

- Steve

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

The fact of the matter is, if a television program was created that accurately reflected what the vast majority of engineers actually do and accomplish, it would be insanely boring to the general public. We aren't like doctors where its sad but still OK to have a patient die once in a while (re: Grey's Anatomy - they kill someone every other week and they are all still heroes, but how many people can an engineer kill before he or she is a scuzz-bucket?); we aren't like lawyers who win and lose cases or have the stereotype of robbing innocent people of their hard-earned money; we aren't like anything - other than just ordinary people responsible for vehicles that don't crash, bridges and buildings that don't fall down, chemical plants that don't explode; indeed, we are most properly characterized by the fact that because of us and what we do, day-to-day life for everyone else is pretty drama-free. Documentary programs like Frontiers Of Science, Frontiers Of Construction, Nature Of Things - they all do a pretty good job of showing the viewing audience what engineers do, but 99% of the viewing audience - including US - hit the remote and tune into Big Bang Theory because, well, the shows about engineering are not entertaining.

It's sad, but it's the truth. We are in the only profession that I can think of - apart from skydiving or cliff-jumping or something - where it's "...one mistake and you're finished...". So, we don't make any. And because of that, we are boring.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

The concerning part is the number of people who believe everything the "magic box" displays, including this show. It's not reality, it is intended to be consumed so people will watch the commercials. Nothing more.

The problem is the show is following a predictable path simular to many other shows, and is becoming just another sitcom, with little redeaming value.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Perhaps more attractive young actresses and models will find themselves attracted to nerds. Then we'll get either better-looking scientists or smarter supermodels. Call it a win/win.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

SNORGY ... what about "Mayday" ? but certainly our day-to-day work-life isn't very exciting (to people not in the industry) ... and that's the way we like it ... an "exciting" day usually means something bad has happened.

Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

(OP)

Quote (TenPenny)

I find it greatly amusing when people think a sit-com television show does anything for public perception, other than give some laughs

Although, I’d certainly agree that people should not form their opinion on any subject by watching trashy TV shows, it absolutely does happen. Sometimes with very significant consequences. The greatest example of this is CSI.

The judicial system has been trying to combat the “CSI Effect” since the public’s perception of the judicial process and forensic science, caused by shows like CSI, has started influencing jurors decisions. The conclusion of one study states: “No matter what it is called, there is a real phenomenon occurring in courtrooms all across the nation at both the state and federal levels. The CSI Effect must be controlled to ensure fairness within criminal jury trials. Vigilance toward protecting the constitutional fairness of the American criminal justice system can never be too excessive—the stakes are too high and false outcomes are too devastating.”

Furthermore, the “CSI Effect” has also influenced academia. Enrollment in forensic science, crimnology and related programs has skyrocketed since the shows like CSI aired (here). Universities and vocational schools have jumped on this opportunity and have developed expedited programs, which has lead to some criticism over the quality of these degrees (and here). (An interesting example of the continued commodification of education, but that’s another story)

The sentiment that TV shows can’t have an impact on the public perception (let alone public action) is unfounded and ignores the gullibility (and lack of skeptical thought) of the average public. I’d argue that Grey’s Anatomy and ER have had at least some influence over the medical profession, positively or negatively. And I think the same can be applied to The Big Bang Theory and science.

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I'm a big fan. Between the robot hand and Sheldon and Amy playing doctor - Star Trek Style - I keep swallowing my gum!

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

I like it a hell of a lot better than Mythbusters. Mythbusters makes me want to gouge my eyes out with a spoon. Terrible application of scientific method, commonly leading to wrong conclusions. At least BBT is intended to be fiction.

But honestly I'd rather watch Community than either of those. It's a show that actually has a good script.



Oh, and Archer.

Hydrology, Drainage Analysis, Flood Studies, and Complex Stormwater Litigation for Atlanta and the South East - http://www.campbellcivil.com

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

rconnor: The "CSI Effect" is likely overblown, and is a very convenient excuse for a lawyer who fails to convict. From your own link:

"One of the largest empirical studies of the CSI effect was undertaken in 2006 by Washtenaw County Circuit Court Judge Donald Shelton and two researchers from Eastern Michigan University. They surveyed more than 1,000 jurors, and found that while juror expectations for forensic evidence had increased, there was no correlation between viewership of crime shows and tendency to convict."

"Many stories about the CSI effect assume that there has been an increase in acquittal rates, though this is often based entirely on anecdotal evidence. A 2009 study of conviction statistics in eight states found that, contrary to the opinions of criminal prosecutors, the acquittal rate has decreased in the years since the debut of CSI."

RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Pretty much summarizes it all:



RE: Big Bang Theory Show - Impact on Science/Engineering

Well maybe it can help us to understand people who don't know anything about science.

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