Science Communication and Public Engagement

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Course Category: Master and Master of Science

Course Description
Course Description
  • Focus of Study

    The field of science communication and public engagement with science is currently enjoying unprecedented growth.

    This is driven by a greater need to demonstrate the impact of publicly funded research, the need for research to be valued, increased government scrutiny and a desire for a stronger evidence base for policy.

    Many career opportunities are emerging at the interface between scientific research and various public groups.

    You will experience a variety of science communication and public engagement issues and methodologies. In the process, you will develop critical thinking skills and self-evaluation skills through reflective practice.

    The learning gained from one course is transferable to other courses, thus ensuring interconnection across the programme.

    This programme is affiliated with the University’s Global Academies.

    Course Description

    This MSc is a twelve-month programme, divided into three semesters. The final semester consists of a choice of research-or practice-based project. Students also complete placements in an organisational setting.

    Teaching methods contain a blend of lectures, individual and small-group activities, and practice-based sessions. Teaching styles will be designed to ‘model’ the practices in science communication and public engagement.

    Compulsory courses

    • Science and Society
    • Principles and Practice in Science Communication and Public Engagement
    • The Role of Social Media in Science Communication
    • Science Education
    • Dialogue for Science Communication and Public Engagement
    • Science Policy and Practice


    Students will also complete two placements in public engagement workplaces.

    The University of Edinburgh has excellent links with many organisations and placement opportunities include: National Museum Scotland, Edinburgh International Science Festival and placements in policy and education.


    Entry Requirements

    An undergraduate degree, with an excellent or very good classification (equivalent to first or upper second class honours in the UK), in a science-related subject. Other qualifications, at honours degree level combined with relevant experience, will also be considered on a case-by-case basis.

    International qualifications

    Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

    English language requirements

    If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English:

    • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)
    • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)
    • PTE(A): total 67 (at least 61 in each of the “Communicative Skills” sections; the ‘Enabling Skills’ sections are not considered)
    • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

    If you completed a CAE or CPE before January 2015 please contact the Admissions Office for the accepted grades.

    Find out more about our language requirements: