Communication of Science & Technology

Do you like science? Do you also like to write, to explain things to people - to communicate? Many careers may be open to you that combine these two interests. From broadcast or print journalism to law to medicine, there is a great demand for people who understand science, engineering and technology and can translate it so that all can understand. The public needs to know more about science and technology. But once they complete their high school science, many rely on the media and on science professionals to keep them up to date with advances in research that affect their daily lives. Too many researchers, however, have difficulty in talking about their work in a way that people who are not scientists can understand. To solve this problem society needs people with special bridging skills who can provide a link between science, technology and the public.

Science communicators in all careers at the interface between the laboratory and the public must have a firm understanding of the language of science as well as the ability to communicate. The suggested courses will provide a strong background in both science/engineering and communication/humanities, preparing students to enter exciting careers.

Both the major and minor in Communication of Science and Technology are interdisciplinary. The three 200-level science courses, for example, are to be taken across two sciences, permitting the student to achieve depth in those sciences that most interest him/her. The breadth of engineering options emphasizes various aspects of engineering. Students who plan to continue their studies by entering graduate or professional school can tailor their course of study to the requirements of the graduate program they plan to pursue. For the student who wishes to take more in the communications area, the Department of Communication Studies offers a broad selection of courses.

Students who would like to take a single course that provides an overview of science communication should consider CSET 150 (Special Topics in the Communication of Science) or CMST 237 ( Communication of Science and Technology).

For more information or to enroll in the CSET Program, contact:

Dr. David Weintraub, CSET Program Chair
david.weintraub@vanderbilt.edu
Office: 6910 Stevenson Center
Phone: (615) 322-5034