Science Communication major

If you are creative, love science and want to work with people, Science Communication is for you. Science communicators use their knowledge of science to help raise the level of understanding about important issues in science—bridging the gap between the scientific community and the public. This major will teach you to communicate effectively with audiences ranging from children to scientists. Science Communication provides you with experience in new media, written, oral and visual presentations, science performance and working with industry experts. During your practicum, you will be individually placed with organisations to enhance your networking and employment opportunities. It is also an opportunity to apply your knowledge and skills in a workplace setting. In consultation with the unit coordinator, you identify a host agency and science communication project that will be the focus of the practicum. Depending on the nature of the practicum, which requires 150 hours, you negotiate the timeline with the host agency. This major must be taken in conjunction with another science major, giving you both sound scientific knowledge and highly marketable communication skills.

Outcomes

Students are able to (1) demonstrate the ability to identify and align key message, audience and medium, by (a) identifying specific audiences and framing messages to be relevant, and (b) articulating specific objectives for communication activities; (2) create effective communication resources, by (a) applying principles of engagement and participation, and (b) developing a portfolio of work in a variety of media for different audiences; (3) evaluate the effectiveness of science communication, by (a) applying best practice findings from the research literature, (b) formulating explicit feedback and useful recommendations, and (c) accepting and implementing feedback on own work; (4) critically analyse and practice enquiry in science communication by reviewing and synthesising the science communication literature; and (5) act accountably for own learning, by (a) being independent and self-directed learners, (b) applying project management skills to work collaboratively with clients and colleagues, and (c) acting ethically with regards to research, communication and intellectual property.

Second major

Science Communication can only be taken as a second major in conjunction with a degree-specific Science major in the following degree courses:

Overview of unit sequence

The Science Communication second major is a single major comprising:

  • two Level 1 units
  • two Level 2 units
  • four Level 3 units
Key to availability of units:
S1 = Semester 1; S2 = Semester 2; NS = non-standard teaching period

Level 1

Second major units
Take all units (12 points):
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S2 PSYC1102 Psychology: Behaviour in Context
S1 SCOM1101 Communicating Science
Prerequisites:
ATAR Mathematics Applications
or
WACE Mathematics 2C/2D
or
TEE Discrete Mathematics
or
equivalent
or
higher
Co-requisites:
MATH1720 Mathematics Fundamentals (only required if students haven't completed Maths Applications
or
WACE Mathematics 2C/2D
or
TEE Discrete Mathematics
or
equivalent
or
higher). Please note that there will be a delay in validating your enrolment in SCOM1101 after you have enrolled in MATH1720.
Incompatibility:
SCIE1103 Science, Society and Communication

Level 2

Second major units
Take all units (12 points):
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S2 SCOM2205 Science Presentations
S1 SCOM2208 Science Writing
Prerequisites:
completion of 36 credit points
or
enrolment in the Master of Science Communication (51580)
Incompatibility:
COMM3324 Science Communication—Writing

Level 3

Second major units
Take the following unit:
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
S1 SCOM3320 Communication Strategies for Change
Prerequisites:
any Level 2 COMM unit
or
any Level 2 SCOM unit enrolment in the Master of Science Communication (51580)
Second major units
Take unit(s) to the value of 18 points:
Availability Unit code Unit name unit requirements
NS, S1, S2 SCOM3318 Science Communication Practicum
Prerequisites:
enrolment in the Science Communication major; SCOM2208 Science Writing
and
SCOM2205 Science Presentations
S2 SCOM3319 Exhibitions and Interpretation
Prerequisites:
any Level 2 COMM unit
or
any Level 2 SCOM unit Enrolment in Master of Science Communication (51580)
S2 SCOM3321 Science and the Media
Prerequisites:
any Level 2 COMM unit
or
any Level 2 SCOM unit
or
enrolment in Master of Science Communication (51580)
S1 SCOM3322 Science Performance
Prerequisites:
any Level 2 COMM unit
or
any Level 2 SCOM unit
or
enrolment in Master of Science Communication (51580)

Choosing a second major

The flexible structure of an undergraduate course allows you the option of including a second major. You have the choice to either nominate your second major when you first enrol in the course or delay it until your second year. For a major to be recorded on your academic record it must be nominated before the requirements of the course are completed.

To fully understand the structure of an undergraduate course read the course structure information and the Undergraduate Degree Course Rules.

The following example illustrates how Science Communication can be included as second major in an undergraduate degree course.

Example: Course Study Plan: CSPGeneric-DSMGeneric-SCCOM

For more examples of combinations of majors, search the study plans .