The Science Communication Unit at UWE Bristol is renowned for its innovative and diverse range of national and international activities designed to engage the public with science. Our MSc Science Communication course is an excellent opportunity to benefit from the Unit's expertise, resources and contacts.
As well as drawing on the academic and practical experience of staff within the Science Communication Unit, our MSc programme gives you an opportunity to meet a range of visiting lecturers and benefit from their practical experience. This also provides an excellent networking opportunity for students interested in developing contacts among science communication practitioners.
The course combines a solid theoretical background with practical skill development, and has excellent links with the sectors and industries it informs. Visiting specialists also help you understand what they are looking for in future employees.
Introductory modules provide a broad theoretical foundation in issues such as the rationale for public engagement with science, understanding the audience, the role of the media in society, communication theory and models of informal learning. You'll then have the opportunity to specialise by choosing from modules that cover practical skills related to taking science directly to the public, as well as new approaches to science communication such as digital media. This allows you to hone your practical skills and develop a portfolio that shows your expertise as a science communicator. In the final year, you may choose to further develop your portfolio, for example by mounting a practical science communication project, or take on a more theoretical or research-based project, perhaps with an external science communication organisation.
You will take the following three modules: • Science and Society • Science, the Public and Media
You then choose two from these three modules: • Science on Air and on Screen • Science in Public Spaces • Writing Science
Unlike most Master's courses in this area, the MSc Science Communication addresses the needs of working students. There are short, intensive teaching blocks of three to five days, and you can expect to attend three teaching sessions for each 30 credit module.
If you study this programme part-time, you'll take two 30 credit modules each for two academic years. It's possible to complete the part-time course in two years by finishing your project during the summer of the second year, or you may prefer to take a third year. Full-time students take four taught modules and complete the project in 14 months.
Group sessions are supplemented by directed and independent study, email discussions, tutorials and mentoring.
The modules are assessed in a variety of ways, to reflect the theoretical concepts, knowledge and practical skills you'll develop. For example, through portfolios, reports and oral presentations all of which you can use to attract prospective employers. The ability to evaluate your own work and others' is critical to success in the workplace, and several assessments are designed to help you acquire these skills.
Careers / Further study
Science communication skills are in high demand in a wide range of sectors and industries, such as journalism, public relations, science centres and museums, science education, professional consultancy and Research Council/learned institutions.
Throughout the course, we'll encourage you to develop the professional skills to help you secure employment or research positions.
- New Postgraduate Master's loans for 2016/17 academic year –
The government are introducing a master’s loan scheme, whereby master’s students under 60 can access a loan of up to £10,000 as a contribution towards the cost of their study. This is part of the government’s long-term commitment to enhance support for postgraduate study.
Scholarships and other sources of funding are also available.