No! Even if you're not an expert in the field, you shouldn't be afraid to read a scientific article. You can use several techniques to take advantage of the information contained in the article.
First, the abstract of the article often provides access to the essential information contained in the article. You can refer to our other article on "6 tips for making the most of a scientific article abstract".
Second, the content of an article often comprises an educational introduction that helps situate the context in relatively accessible terms, summarizes the issue and highlights the added value of the work described in the article. In this introduction, the author often cites reference publications or general reviews that will allow, if necessary, to complete the information collected.
One can also quickly refer to the conclusion of the article, which often also highlights the added value of the work, but also outlines the prospects and helps situate the work that remains to be done.
Thus, reading the abstract, the introduction and the conclusion, will allow a first diagonal reading of the scientific article.
If the interest in the work described in the article is confirmed, one can then carefully study the part of the article that contains the information of interest: hypotheses, method used, experimental results, result analysis.
With a bit of practice, it is often not necessary to be an expert in the field to benefit from the information contained in a scientific article. Of course, some fields or disciplines are particularly complex or even hermetic and require extensive background training. In such cases, it is essential to contact experts in the field in order to understand the content and scope of their work. They are often much more accessible and open than one might think.
It is one of the objectives of our platform to facilitate this contact.
In this way, we hope to contribute to the diffusion and popularisation of Science and Technology, via our platform, to an increasingly wide audience.