Science Communication Minor

The Science Communication Minor is designed to help prepare students to effectively communicate science topics to a variety of audiences by utilizing professional communication techniques and tools. Students will gain an understanding of contemporary communication issues that may impact their field, and gain advanced skills to enhance their communication with the public, whether through traditional media, new media, or in person. This minor is open only to students with majors in the College of Natural Sciences or the Moody College of Communication. To declare the Science Communication minor, a student must have at least a cumulative 2.5 grade point average.

If you are a College of Natural Sciences students and have questions about the minor please send your inquiry to: science.com.minor@cns.utexas.edu.

For students under the 2020-2022 catalog

The minor requires 18 semester hours of coursework. Nine hours must be taken at the upper-division level and at least nine hours must be taken in residence. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, and only courses with a grade of C- or better (or CR for courses offered only on a pass/fail basis) will be counted toward the minor. Students in Moody College may declare only one minor and must apply for their minor/certificate before they have completed 65% of their degree requirements.

Students must fulfill the following requirements:

ADV 323/PR 323 Public Communication of Science and Techology
Three hours of Foundations courses: 
ADV 305 Fundamentals of Advertising
ADV 324/PR 324 Communicating Sustainability
CMS 306M Professional Communication Skills
CMS 313M Organizational Communication
CMS 315M Interpersonal Communication Theory
CMS 332K Theories of Persuasion
CMS 334K Nonverbal Communication
CMS 342K Political Communication
CMS 345 Media Effects and Politics
J 301F Fundamental Issues in Journalism
PR 305 Fundamentals of Public Relations
Three hours of Skills courses:
COM 308/NSC 303 Creative Communication of Scientific Research
CMS 316L Interviewing Principles and Practices
CMS 320 Advanced Presentation Skills
CMS 337 Building Sales Relationships
CMS 345G Communicating to Government
CMS 350C Crowds, Clouds, and Community
CMS 353S Social Media and Organizations
CMS 372K Advanced Organizational Communication
COM 323 Communication Internship (Topic 4: Science Communication Internship)
J 313P Multimedia News Reporting
J 336F Social Media Journalism
J 346F Reporting on the Environment
Three hours of Ethics and Leadership courses
CLD 301 Introduction to Communication and Leadership
CMS 322E Communication Ethics
CMS 332 Argumentation and Advocacy
CMS 338 Leadership Stories
CMS 344K Lying and Deception
CMS 353C Communication for Innovation
Six additional hours of coursework chosen from Foundations, Skills, and Ethics and Leadership courses

Under specific circumstances, the faculty committee may approve course substitutions for minor course requirements. Students who believe their situation to be of a compelling nature must submit a petition for course substitutions in advance. Petitions will not be reviewed during registration or add/drop periods.

In addition, the following are University-wide rules regarding minors:

  • The minor must be completed in conjunction with an undergraduate degree at the University of Texas at Austin.
  • Minors must include a minimum of six hours of upper division coursework. 
  • A student may not earn a minor in the same field of study as his or her major.
  • At least nine of the hours required for the minor must include coursework not used to satisfy the requirements of the student’s major; this includes courses in non-major departments that are cross-listed with courses offered within the student’s major department. However, courses in the minor may fulfill other degree requirements such as general education requirements or required elective hours.
  • Transcript recognition is awarded at the time of undergraduate degree completion.

If after full review of minor requirements you still have questions, please contact your academic advisor or email moodyminors@austin.utexas.edu

For students under the 2018-2020 catalog

The minor requires 18 semester hours of coursework. Nine hours must be taken at the upper-division level and at least nine hours must be taken in residence. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, and only courses with a grade of C- or better (or CR for courses offered only on a pass/fail basis) will be counted. Students in Moody College may declare only one minor and must apply for their minor/certificate before they have completed 65% of their degree requirements.

Students must fulfill the following requirements:

ADV 323 Public Communication of Science and Techology
Three hours of Foundations courses: 
ADV 305 Fundamentals of Advertising
ADV 324 Communicating Sustainability
CMS 306M Professional Communication Skills
CMS 313M Organizational Communication
CMS 315M Interpersonal Communication Theory
CMS 332K Theories of Persuasion
CMS 334K Nonverbal Communication
CMS 342K Political Communication
CMS 345 Media Effects and Politics
J 301F Fundamental Issues in Journalism
PR 305 Fundamentals of Public Relations
Three hours of Skills courses:
COM 308 Creative Communication of Scientific Research
CMS 316L Interviewing Principles and Practices
CMS 320 Advanced Presentation Skills
CMS 337 Building Sales Relationships
CMS 345G Communicating to Government
CMS 350C Crowds, Clouds, and Community
CMS 353S Social Media and Organizations
CMS 360W Work360
CMS 372K Advanced Organizational Communication
COM 323 Communication Internship (Topic 4: Science Communication Internship)
J 313P Multimedia News Reporting
J 336F Social Media Journalism
J 346F Reporting on the Environment
Three hours of Ethics and Leadership courses
CLD 301 Introduction to Communication and Leadership
CMS 322E Communication Ethics
CMS 332 Argumentation and Advocacy
CMS 338 Leadership Stories
CMS 344K Lying and Deception
CMS 353C Communication for Innovation
Six additional hours of coursework chosen from Foundations, Skills, and Ethics and Leadership courses

Under specific circumstances, the faculty committee may approve course substitutions for minor course requirements. Students who believe their situation to be of a compelling nature must submit a petition for course substitutions in advance. Petitions will not be reviewed during registration or add/drop periods.

In addition, the following are University-wide rules regarding minors:

  • The minor must be completed in conjunction with an undergraduate degree at the University of Texas at Austin.
  • Minors must include a minimum of six hours of upper division coursework. 
  • A student may not earn a minor in the same field of study as his or her major.
  • At least nine of the hours required for the minor must include coursework not used to satisfy the requirements of the student’s major; this includes courses in non-major departments that are cross-listed with courses offered within the student’s major department. However, courses in the minor may fulfill other degree requirements such as general education requirements or required elective hours.
  • Transcript recognition is awarded at the time of undergraduate degree completion.

If after full review of minor requirements you still have questions, please contact your academic advisor or email moodyminors@austin.utexas.edu

For students under the 2016-2018 catalog (Communication and Society: Science Communication Minor)

The minor requires eighteen semester hours of coursework. Nine hours must be taken at the upper-division level and at least nine hours must be taken in residence. Students in Moody College may declare only one minor/certificate.

If you are pursuing the Science Communication Minor under the 2016-2018 catalog you are eligible to take new coursework offered under the 2018-2020 catalog and apply it toward your minor requirements, as long as you meet the pre-requisites for the course(s) you plan to take. To learn how those courses apply toward the requirements under the 2016-2018 catalog click here.

Students must fulfill the following requirements:

COM 323 Communication Internship (Topic 4: Science Communication Internship)
Six hours of Issues in Communication courses:
CMS 315M Interpersonal Communication Theory
CMS 322E Communication Ethics
CMS 334K Nonverbal Communication
CMS 338 Leadership Stories
CMS 344K Lying and Deception
CMS 353S Social Media and Organizations
J 301F Fundamental Issues in Journalism
J 346F Reporting on the Environment
J 346G Domestic Issues and Global Perspective
Nine hours of Communication Tools courses:
CMS 306M Professional Communication Skills
CMS 320 Advanced Presentation Skills

CMS 332 Argumentation and Advocacy
CMS 337 Building Sales Relationships
CMS 332K Theories of Persuasion
CMS 348 Communication Research Methods
CMS 364M Pre-Graduate School Mentorship
J 302F Digital Storytelling Basics
J 331G Audio Storytelling
J 333F Data-Driven Reporting
J 336D Graphic Design for Print and Online
J 336F Social Media Journalism
J 339G Mobile News App Design

Under specific circumstances, the faculty committee may approve course substitutions for minor course requirements. Students who believe their situation to be of a compelling nature must submit a petition for course substitutions in advance. Petitions will not be reviewed during registration or add/drop periods.

In addition, the following are University-wide rules regarding minors:

  • The minor must be completed in conjunction with an undergraduate degree at the University of Texas at Austin.
  • Minors must include a minimum of six hours of upper division coursework. 
  • A student may not earn a minor in the same field of study as his or her major.
  • At least nine of the hours required for the minor must include coursework not used to satisfy the requirements of the student’s major; this includes courses in non-major departments that are cross-listed with courses offered within the student’s major department. However, courses in the minor may fulfill other degree requirements such as general education requirements or required elective hours.
  • Transcript recognition is awarded at the time of undergraduate degree completion.

If after full review of minor requirements you still have questions, please contact your academic advisor or email moodyminors@austin.utexas.edu

Apply here!

  • Select "Communication" as the School
  • Click "Search"
  • If you're in the 2018-2020 catalog, find "SCIENCE COMMUNICATION" and apply!
  • If you're in the 2016-2018 catalog, find "COMMUNICATION AND SOCIETY: SCIENCE COMMUNICATION" and apply!

The 18-20 and the 16-18 Science Communication Minors are open only to students with majors in the College of Natural Sciences or the Moody College of Communication. To declare the Science Communication minor, a student must have at least a cumulative 2.5 grade point average.

Students in Moody College may declare only one minor and must apply for their minor/certificate before they have completed 65% of their degree requirements.