Bethany Brookshire

Staff Writer, Science News for Students, 2013–2021

Bethany Brookshire was the staff writer at Science News for Students from 2013 to 2021. She has a B.S. in biology and a B.A. in philosophy from The College of William and Mary, and a Ph.D. in physiology and pharmacology from Wake Forest University School of Medicine. She is also a host on the podcast Science for the People, and a 2019-2020 MIT Knight Science Journalism Fellow.

All Stories by Bethany Brookshire

  1. Psychology

    Running is contagious among those with the competitive bug

    Can behaviors really be contagious? Runners log more miles when their friends do — especially if they want to stay leader of the pack, a new study finds.

  2. Archaeology

    How the house mouse tamed itself

    When people began to settle down, animals followed. Some made successful auditions as our domesticated species. Others — like mice — became our vermin, a new study shows.

  3. Science & Society

    Most Americans like science — and are willing to pay for it

    Americans drastically overestimate how much the government spends on science. But when correctly informed, they want the government to spend more.

  4. Science & Society

    Scientists may work to prevent bias, but they don’t always say so

    Scientists may do the work to prevent bias in their experiments — but they aren’t telling other scientists about it, two new studies show.

  5. Computing

    Speech recognition has come a long way in 50 years

    Early versions of computer speech recognition relied on word sounds. Now, they add pattern recognition and a lot of statistics.

  6. Health & Medicine

    Weekend warriors put up a fight against death

    Weekend warriors shove all their weekly activity into just one or two days, and it’s still enough to reduce mortality risk.

  7. Science & Society

    Analysis finds gender bias in peer-reviewer picks

    The peer-review process aims to avoid bias, but it turns out there’s gender bias in who is picked to review the papers.

  8. Health & Medicine

    50 years ago, methadone made a rosy debut

    Heralded as the “answer to heroin addiction,” methadone is still used to treat opiate addiction, despite risks.

  9. Neuroscience

    How scientists are hunting for a safer opioid painkiller

    Scientists are sorting through chemical structures, twisting and turning known drugs and exploring new ways to ease pain.

  10. Health & Medicine

    50 years ago, fluoridation was promoted as a bone protector

    In 1966, scientists hoped fluoride might protect adult bone health. While the results broke down over time, the benefits for teeth remain clear.

  11. Science & Society

    Why people don’t vote, and what to do about it

    The United States has terrible voter turnout. Political scientists have studied why people don’t vote and some effective ways to improve voter participation.

  12. Science & Society

    Blame bad incentives for bad science

    Scientists have to publish a constant stream of new results to succeed. But in the process, their success may lead to science’s failure, two new studies warn.