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SCOPE (Science Communication Online Programme) is an introduction to effective science communication designed for STEM graduate students. This NSF-funded resource is free and created for those who don’t have access to live, in-person science communication training.

Sign up to participate in the next offering of SCOPE on the registration page.

SCOPE was created by expert science communicators and educators, who each designed a module within the course. The course is hosted by Byron Stewart, of Northwestern’s Research Communication Training Program (RCTP).

Curriculum Developers:

Sadie Witkowski – Introductory Materials and Project Coordinator
Kevin Grazier – Audience Awareness and Analysis
Mónica Feliú-Mójer – Speaking and Writing Without Jargon
Jenny Cutraro – From the Lab to the Layperson
Barbara Shwom – Taking a Rhetorical Approach
Paula Croxson – Scientific Storytelling
Janet Iwasa, Shraddha Nayak, and Grace Hsu – Communicating Visually
Carolyn Hall – Skillful Presentations and Stage Presence

The course is asynchronous with recorded videos, discussion boards, peer-feedback, and reading assignments. Each week of the program a new module opens, requiring approximately 2 hours to complete.

Participants in this course will:
  • Practice creating data visualization based on graphic design principles
  • Discuss the importance of forming a clear rhetorical argument and persuasive story in writing or speech
  • Learn to identify their audience and adapt their research story to suit that group
  • Discover how science journalism, university press office, and researchers fit different roles in science communication
  • Develop their speaking and presentation skills
  • View the complete course syllabus
Upon completion of all program activities, students receive a LinkedIn badge to recognize their training and hard work.

Please send any questions to

We’d like to recognize and thank the science communication professionals who provided feedback on the course:

Kimberly McCoy (NPR Scicommers – Freelance Writer & NPR Scicommers Coordinator)
Thomas Hayden (Standford University – Journalist and Professor)
Geoff Hunt (National Academy of Sciences – Director, LabX)
JoAnna Klein (Independent – Freelance Science Journalist)
Nicole Lee (NC State University – Assisstant Professor)
Joe Palca (National Public Radio – Science Correspondent)
Daniel Serrano (University of Maryland – Faculty Specialist)
Jesse Shanahan (University of California, San Diego – Graduate Student and Science Communicator)
Matt Shipman (North Carolina State University – Research Communications Lead)

Congratulations to everyone who has completed SCOPE:

Nick Young (Michigan State University)
Jimmy Kim (Northwestern University)
Lydia Horne (University of Maine)
Christina Marvin (University of Wisconsin)