Overall, I found it pretty challenging having to summarize a whole research article and not exceed the word count of the original news article. The news article had just over 600 words and so upon starting my article, I was sure it would take a lot to reach that word length, but quite the opposite happened. As a result, I had to cut out a lot of the details mentioned in the research article, specifically with respect to how each study was conducted. This was hard to do because the researchers conducted 5 studies. Upon finishing my article though, I realized I had not really cut out much important information. The details which I cut out were not totally necessary for my article, as they included things like the types of statistical analyses used, the ethnicities of the surnames used for ranking, and how the researchers operationalized their variables. I also chose to leave out the fact some of the studies involved breaking the participants up into groups because the research article did not make it clear whether or not random assignment was used. I also refrained from claiming that the results were not generalizable because it was unknown how the researchers obtained their samples.
Before beginning the article, I first came up with my title. Trying to come up with a title which would draw readers in without promoting false information was tricky. But this just made me take-on the perspective of a journalist and better understand what journalism entails. After completing this series of writing projects, I understand the difficulty with which journalists summarize research findings, having to be very careful not to plagiarize. I also am impressed with how the author of the original news article researched information outside of the studies to include in his article. Overall, I understand a bit more the difficulty with which journalists try to inform the public by researching/summarizing experiments and adding elements which will attract readers.
When it came to deciding what information to leave out so as to not exceed the word count, there were a few things I made sure to add to my article. I first made sure that I emphasized the correlational aspect of the findings. I next made sure to include the ethnicities of the participants, along with the fact that the researchers themselves decided what names were easy and difficult to pronounce. These inclusions were useful for my commentary in the article, as I offered a little critique on the experimental design. Finally, I made sure to quote the researchers on their addressed limitations, along with adding my own commentary on these limitations.