Course Application

Communicating Science to the Public Effectively (CENV 500)

Winter 2020 — link provided when available

3 credits (Credit/No Credit)

Meets Wednesdays 1:30-4:20pm

Whether you’re looking to give an unforgettable job talk, change a policymaker’s mind, or finally get your grandparent to understand your research, the Engage course is a great professional development opportunity and learning experience. This is a discussion-based course for graduate students in the sciences that focuses on effective techniques for communicating science, with an emphasis on sharing your science with non-specialists. At the end of the quarter, each student will present a 20 minute public talk on their graduate research to be delivered during the 2020 Engage: The Science Speaker Series at Town Hall Seattle.

In this course, students will:

  • Perfect their elevator pitches

  • Develop and practice analogies to distill their research

  • Practice storytelling, audience consideration, and cultural competency

  • Play improv games to leverage improvisation as a public speaking tool

  • Engage in weekly readings and discussions

  • Hear from guest speakers on science communication

Space is limited to 15 students, and the course fills quickly, often with an extensive waiting list. Thus, we have an application process and an expectation agreement which must be completed for a student to be enrolled. The student application is not yet available for the 2020 seminar, but will be posted her at a later date.

If you have any questions about the course, please email Katie Reichard,

The Engage course and community invites all to apply. We strive to work with a diverse group of scientists and to create an inclusive space that lifts up the voices of individuals and enables them to be their fullest self in their science communication. If you anticipate needing accommodations for this class or the application, feel free to reach out directly to Katie.