SCI 101: Science Writing for the People

Do you want to improve your science writing skills? Do you love telling people about the latest research and want to break into public science writing? Are you interested in topics like pseudoscience, critical thinking, and online misinformation? Do you want to improve your English grammar skills? You might be interested in taking our course, and earn a certificate for work or school.

Admission to the course is on sale for all of 2021, only $25 per learner! (Regular price $75) Join now to take advantage of this discount. Register any time.

New sessions begin on the first day of each month!

Course Description

This course will provide an overview of some important types of popular science writing such as news writing, editorials, technical documents, and educational pieces. This course will also introduce students to some of the theory behind science communication and approaches based on current research into cognitive and political psychology. Also, learners will dive into the nuts and bolts of good writing, grammar, and style with plenty of practice exercises. This course will also provide tips for starting your science writing career.

Course Sections

Unit 1: Overview

Unit 2: Communicating Science

Unit 3: Adopting a Marketing Mindset

Unit 4: Grammar and Style

Unit 5: Ways to Write About Science

Unit 6: Becoming a Science Writer


This course is for science undergraduate and graduate students, researchers, technicians, health care professionals, science educators, engineers, and other science-trained professionals. Our training is designed to help you understand the art of popular “informal” science writing if you have only performed scientific and academic writing previously.

Format & Duration

The course runs from the first of the month to the last day of the month on a year round basis. It is self-paced but you must complete it within the month. 

There are 6 sections and they will all be made available up front to learners upon registration.

You will receive instructor feedback on discussion boards as well as on free response assignments. Feedback is given each Friday. The multiple choice quizzes are graded automatically.

This course is pass-fail and is based on earning a 70% average over all the assignments. Discussion boards are not graded – they are simply there to make the learning experience more enjoyable, as you’ll get to interact directly with other learners and the instructor.

Learner Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, learners will:

1. Understand some of the latest research on science communication.

2. Adopt a marketing mindset for reaching varied audiences with science writing.

3. Improve clarity of writing through detailed study of grammar and style principles.

4. Learn the basic principles of news writing, technical writing, and explainer articles.

5. Receive tips for success for starting a writing career.

Recommended Reading Materials

Bernoff, J. (2016). Writing Without Bullshit: Boost your career by saying what you mean. New York: Harper Business, An Imprint of HarperCollins.

Greene, A. E. (2013). Writing Science in Plain English. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.

Olson, Randy. (2018) Don’t Be Such a Scientist: Talking Substance in an Age of Style. Island Press/Center for Resource Economics.

Ready to Start?

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That invitation will allow you to access the course materials.

Please email if you do not receive the invitation within 24 hours.