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Master of Science Communication (MSciComm)

Clocktower.

Overview

Dunedin is a UNESCO City of Literature, supports an International Science Festival, and is the wildlife capital of New Zealand, with colonies of seals, albatross and penguins in the city's boundaries. It is perhaps no accident, therefore, that it has also become a hub for natural history filmmaking. The outstanding natural environment and dynamic cultural environment provide an excellent setting for the University of Otago’s Centre for Science Communication, the home of story-telling and science. Three Science Communication endorsements are available in the MSciComm: Creative Non-Fiction Writing in Science, Science and Natural History Filmmaking, and Science in Society. Students in each endorsement produce a thesis comprising a creative component (e.g. film, book, exhibition etc.) and original research.

Contact details

Department of Science Communication

Email: sciencecommunication@otago.ac.nz
Website: http://www.sciencecommunication.info

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Programme Requirements

Master of Science Communication (MSciComm) endorsed in Creative Non-Fiction Writing in Science

Papers and ThesisPoints

SCOM 402 The Craft of Storytelling

SCOM 403 Science and Creative Non-Fiction Writing

SCOM 409 Introduction to Science Communication

SCOM 413 Digital Production for Science Communication

Two other 400-level papers

(One other paper at 400-level may be substituted for one of the prescribed papers, with approval from the Director of the Centre for Science Communication).

Thesis: SCOM 5A (60 points) and SCOM 5B (60 points) (including a substantial creative writing project).

20

20

20

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40

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120

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Master of Science Communication (MSciComm) endorsed in Science and Natural History Filmmaking

PapersPoints

SCOM 402  The Craft of Storytelling

SCOM 405  Science and Natural History Film

SCOM 409  Introduction to Science Communication

SCOM 411  The Techniques of Natural History and Science Filmmaking 1

SCOM 412  The Techniques of Natural History and Science Filmmaking 2

SCOM 413  Digital Production for Science Communication

(One other paper at 400-level may be substituted for one of the prescribed papers, with approval from the Director of the Centre for Science Communication.)

Thesis: SCOM 5A (60 points) and SCOM 5B (60 points) (including production of a film).

20

20

20

20

20

20

 
 

120

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Master of Science Communication (MSciComm) endorsed in Science in Society

PapersPoints

SCOM 402  The Craft of Storytelling

SCOM 404  Science Communication Internship

SCOM 406  Communicating Science

SCOM 409  Introduction to Science Communication

SCOM 413  Digital Production for Science Communication

One other 400-level paper

(One other paper at 400-level may be substituted for one of the prescribed papers, with approval from the Director of the Centre for Science Communication).

Thesis: SCOM 5A (60 points) and SCOM 5B (60 points)

20

20

20

20

20

20

 
 :

120

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Master of Science Communication (MSciComm) unendorsed option

Papers Points

Any six 400-level SCOM papers which do not satisfy requirements for any of the endorsements above

(Up to two other papers at 400-level may be substituted for the prescribed papers, with approval from the Director of the Centre for Science Communication).

Thesis: SCOM 5A (60 points) and SCOM 5B (60 points)

120

 
 

120

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Regulations for the Degree of Master of Science Communication (MSciComm)

  1. Admission to the Programme

    1. Admission to the programme shall be subject to the approval of the Pro-Vice Chancellor (Sciences), on the advice of the Director of the Centre for Science Communication.
    2. Every applicant must either
      1. be a graduate, or
      2. have equivalent qualifications or experience acceptable to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences).
    3. In considering an applicant’s qualifications, regard will be had to the detail of the course of study followed to gain the qualification, as well as the applicant’s performance in the programme.
  2. Structure of the Programme

    1. Every programme of study shall be as prescribed for one of the options listed above.
    2. A candidate may be exempted from some or all of the prescribed papers on the basis of previous study.
    3. A candidate shall, before commencing the investigation to be described in the thesis, secure the approval of the Director of the Centre for Science Communication for the topic, the supervisor(s), and the proposed course of the investigation.
    4. A candidate may not present a thesis or other material which has previously been accepted for another degree.
    5. For the thesis, the research should be of a kind that a diligent and competent student should complete within one year of full-time study.
  3. Duration of the Programme

    A candidate shall normally follow a programme of study for not less than two years of full-time study, or the equivalent in part-time study, and shall complete the requirements for the degree within three years of admission to the programme. Exceptions shall be permitted only with the permission of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences).

  4. Examination of the Thesis and Associated Material

    1. The thesis and any associated material shall be assessed by at least two examiners, at least one of whom shall be external to the University.
    2. The candidate's supervisor shall not be an examiner but may make a report on the work of the candidate to the Director of the Centre for Science Communication.
    3. Each examiner shall supply a written report on the thesis and any associated material and recommend a mark and grade on the basis of the thesis and any associated material as submitted, and an overall result selected from the options specified in clause (d) below.
    4. The examiners may recommend that a thesis and any associated material:
      1. be accepted without amendments;
      2. be accepted subject to amendments being made at the discretion and to the satisfaction of the Director of the Centre for Science Communication;
      3. does not meet the criteria for the award of the degree, but may be revised and resubmitted for examination;
      4. does not meet the criteria for the award of the degree, and should be rejected without right of resubmission.
    5. Amendments 4(d)(ii) and revisions 4(d)(iii) shall be completed by a specified date to be determined by the Director of the Centre for Science Communication.
    6. A candidate shall be permitted to revise and resubmit a thesis and any associated material for examination once only.
    7. If a revised and resubmitted thesis and any associated material is finally accepted, the result shall be either Pass or Fail (i.e. ungraded) and without eligibility for the award of the degree with distinction or credit.
    8. Where examiners cannot agree on a result, the Director of the Centre for Science Communication should so report to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences) or nominee who shall arrive at a decision after consulting a referee who should normally be external to the University.
  5. Level of Award of the Degree

    The degree may be awarded with distinction or with credit.

  6. Variations

    The Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences) may in exceptional circumstances approve a course of study which does not comply with these regulations.

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