Excellence Strategy

Certificate Program Science Communication and Media Competence

The certificate program "Science Communication and Media Competence" supports researchers in acquiring and developing skills to communicate and share their research. The program offers workshops in the core areas of writing, visualization, presentation, interview training, and project development.

Target groups are

  • post-docs
  • junior research group leaders and
  • junior professors.

Our courses are part of the communication concept Sharing Knowledge and are generally offered in English. Organization is handled in cooperation with the Graduate Academy of Tübingen University. The modular structure of the certificate program allows participants to choose an individual focus in acquiring communication skills particularly relevant to them. Successful participation in a minimum number of courses leads to the acquisition of the certificate. Individual courses might be opened to additional participants depending on demand.

Contact

Department of
General Rhetoric

Dr. Markus Gottschling
Presentation Research Center

Hölderlinstraße 29
72074 Tübingen

markus.gottschling[at]uni-tuebingen.de
+49 7071 / 29 77418

Scientific Head:
Prof. Dr. Olaf Kramer
olaf.kramer[at]uni-tuebingen.de

Reasons to participate:

  1. Promote your personal career development and increase your visibility in the media
  2. Create broader interest and attention for your research and underline its relevance
  3. Find your own role, topic and approach to science communication
  4. Get to know different formats, media and strategies of science communication
  5. Formulate addressee-oriented core messages and develop effective communication designs

Application

New applications for participation in the certificate program "Science Communication and Media Competence" will be possible in 2022. More details will be announced here as soon as they are finalized.

Content and Formats

In addition to the compulsory basic course (Introduction to Science Communication), participants choose at least three workshops suitable for them from a range of two-day practical courses. Moreover, participants can further expand their knowledge in the diverse field of science communication through the expert inputs of a special event series, the Sharing Knowledge Talks.

The Masterclass Rhetoric and Knowledge complements the courses offered in the certificate program.

Basic Course

(compulsory, 2 days with 4 hours per day)

The basic course provides the foundation for the more specialized practical courses of the certificate program. In addition to an introduction to core aspects of science communication, participants receive an initial overview of the areas that can be explored in greater depth in the further course of the program.

Introduction to Science Communication

Topics

  • Introduction to the opportunities and challenges of science communication.
  • Overview and dimensions of media communication channels
  • Self-reflection: Find your own topic and approach to science communication
  • Hands-on SciComm: Getting started

Practical Courses

(2 days with 4 hours per day each)

Specialized practical courses give you the opportunity to gain practical experience in specific fields of science communication. In this way, you can expand and test your own communication skills in a targeted and individual manner. The courses are offered on a recurring basis and can be taken flexibly. The specific dates for the first courses will be announced as part of the basic course.

Visualization & Design

Topics

  • Basics of successful visualizations
  • Visual core messages and visual abstracts
  • Infographics and data visualization
  • Moving images and animated visualizations

Science Journalism

Topics

  • Getting to know formats and contents
  • Dealing with different media
  • Finding topics and conveying them comprehensibly
  • Building your own network

Social Media

Topics

  • Opportunities and pitfalls of social media
  • Communication strategies on social media
  • Reflection: Researchers and institutions on social media
  • Getting Started: Your own social persona & first posts

Presentation

Topics

  • Addressee orientation
  • Key messages
  • Poster Flash & Pitch
  • Hands-on exercises and individual feedback
  • Online presentation

Interview & Conversation

Topics

  • Basics of conversional rhetoric
  • Practical approaches to the interview format (best practices, case studies)
  • Strategies of science communication in interviews
  • Dealing with critical questions and conflict management in interviews
  • Hands-on exercises and individual feedback

Format Development & Project Work

Topics

  • Developing appropriate communication formats for your own research
  • Getting to know creative techniques & creating new routines
  • Development process from concept to prototype
  • Practice-oriented home assignments

Expert Inputs: Sharing Knowledge Talks

The expert inputs of the Sharing Knowledge Talks provide further impulses and opportunities to network and deepen your knowledge in the dynamic field of science communication. Currently planned topics include new research findings in the field of Science Communication, best practice examples, public engagement strategies, the rhetoric of science communication and more. Specific topics and dates of the first expert inputs will be announced within the coming months.

Scope

The certificate program should generally be completed within two calendar years. Depending on capacity, individual courses may also be opened to external participants.

To achieve the qualification goal, participants are asked to complete the following courses:

  • Basic Course (“Introduction to Science Communication”
  • at least 3 practical courses (freely selectable)
  • at least 2 "Sharing Knowledge Talks" (freely selectable)

The Importance of Science Communication

Researchers are increasingly involved in the dialog and building of trust between science and society. For a long time, communicating scientific findings to the public was considered the task of journalism, but now, thanks to profound changes in the media and the development of new, innovative formats, there are more and more opportunities for scientists to communicate their own research directly (and increasingly within a global perspective).

In addition, modern science communication is no longer understood in the sense of merely conveying information: The aim is to establish an active dialog with society.

Crucial to all of this is the development of communicative competence in the sense of a flexible strategic judgment that can be applied to specific situations, enabling scientists to adapt their communication in a target-specific and addressee-oriented manner. This is the basis to find optimal communication solutions in a wide variety of contexts – and only in this way will sustainable communication and development be possible: Purely technical media training and simplistic "how-tos" are not enough here; a competence-based approach is central to tackling the complexity and dynamics of modern science communication in the long term.

Against this background, it is more important than ever for researches today

  • to become familiar with theoretical strategies and possibilities of personal as well as institutional science communication and to gain a sound communicative judgment,
  • to create their own science communication channels (or to be able to successfully contribute to the channels already used in their institutions)
  • to establish a network of contacts and multipliers, both within and outside of the scientific community
  • to contribute to a broader social discourse on science

Furthermore, active science communication in the sense of a personal as well as institutional commitment to a dialogue with society has become a prerequisite for recruitment and research funding in numerous contexts.