This certificate is open to any UW-Madison student enrolled in a graduate level program outside of LSC (GRAD, LAW, MED, PHARM, VMED). Before applying to the certificate, students are encouraged to consult with their advisor and/or graduate program coordinator from their major department. As part of the declaration form, students will be required to confirm that they have received consent from their advisor/degree program to pursue the certificate.

For students to declare their intent to pursue the Graduate Certificate in Science Communication, they must complete the Certificate Declaration Form. This form must be completed prior to graduation.

Students should contact the Director of Academic Programs or Student Services Coordinator with questions about the certificate, declaration process, or course selection.

Students are not allowed to earn both the science communication graduate certificate and Ph.D. minor in life sciences communication.

Graduate School Resources

Resources to help you afford graduate study might include assistantships, fellowships, traineeships, and financial aid. Further funding information is available from the Graduate School. Be sure to check with your program for individual policies and restrictions related to funding.

  • Total credits required: 10
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher in all LSC courses
  • Courses must be at the 300 level or above and must have the graduate attribute to count toward the minimum graduate coursework (50%) rule.
  • Previous coursework from other institutions and undergraduate coursework at UW-Madison cannot be counted toward the certificate.
Core Courses4
LSC 700 Colloquium in Life Sciences Communication1
LSC 720 Introduction to Communication Theory and Research3
or LSC 625 Risk Communication
or LSC/​ENVIR ST/​JOURN  823 Science and Environment Communication
or LSC 902 Public Opinion of Life Science Issues
Select two approved electives6
LSC 350 Visualizing Science and Technology3
LSC 430 Communicating Science with Narrative3
LSC 432 Social Media for the Life Sciences3
LSC 435 Theory and Practice of Integrated Marketing Communication3
LSC 440 Contemporary Communication Technologies and Their Social Effects3
LSC 532 Web Design for the Sciences3
LSC 560 Scientific Writing3
LSC 561 Writing Science for the Public3
LSC 625 Risk Communication3
LSC 660 Data Analysis in Communications Research3
LSC/​ENVIR ST/​JOURN  823 Science and Environment Communication3
LSC 875 Special Topics1-4
LSC 902 Public Opinion of Life Science Issues3
Total Credits10

Graduate School Resources

Take advantage of the Graduate School's professional development resources to build skills, thrive academically, and launch your career. 

  1. Communicate complex ideas effectively across different audiences, including underrepresented or particularly vulnerable audiences.
  2. Select and utilize the most appropriate theories, methodologies, tools, and practices to communicate about science.
  3. Collect relevant evidence designed to answer questions related to scientific challenges faced by industry, universities, and non-profits.
  4. Discuss some of the ethical, legal, and social implications of science.

Faculty: Professors: Brossard (chair), Meiller, Scheufele (director of academic programs), Xenos; Associate Professors: Shaw, Shepard; Assistant Professors: Chen, Chinn, Li, Newman.