Scientists,Communication & the Workplace

Subject SCIE90006 (2011)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2011.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2011.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 36 hours comprising 2 one-hour lectures per week and 2 two-hour practical classes per week commencing 12 April, 2010 concluding 28 May, 2010.
Total Time Commitment: 120 hours
Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

Students undertaking this subject will be expected to be competent in word-processing and basic library research skills using internet databases.

Students undertaking this subject will be expected to regularly access an internet-enabled computer.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study and reasonable steps will be made to enhance a student’s participation in the University’s programs. Students who feel their disability may impact upon their active and safe participation in a subject are encouraged to discuss this with the relevant subject coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Subject Overview: This subject examines the workplace environment and the range of competences needed to operate effectively. Students develop an understanding of the nature of managerial work and the kinds of skills required to manage oneself and relate to others in organisations. Communication is emphasised throughout the subject. It is the foundation on which a range of management skills is based, for example, the ability to consult, influence and negotiate. Students are given practical experience of communicating and working in groups. They also have the opportunity to develop their presentation skills and learn how to present scientific ideas persuasively to a lay audience.

This subject prepares students for the work environment – whether this is in the field of scientific research, industry or the public sector. It is estimated that managers spend around 60-80% of their daily working lives communicating and therefore a key objective is to provide students with the opportunity to practise and develop skills in this area. In the early stages of the program, however, students will first have the chance to reflect on their personal and career related goals and the type of work environment that may suit them. They will be made aware of the range of competences needed in order to manage the transition into full time employment and, in the process, place into context the technical knowledge and skills that may be required. They will learn how to work in groups and communicate effectively with their peers. They will also learn the essentials of business presentation design and delivery.

  • One Group presentation to be delivered in Week 5 (30%)
  • Submission of a 2,000 word ‘Learning Log’ in the final week of the program (20%)
  • A 2 hour exam scheduled during the normal Semester 1 exam period (40%).
  • A Class Participation score (10%)
Prescribed Texts: Cameron, S. (2007) The Business Student's Handbook: Learning Skills for Study and Employment, 4th Edition, Prentice Hall.
Recommended Texts:


Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

At the completion of this subject, students should have an understanding of:
• The range of competences required to operate effectively in a work setting.
• Their broad life goals and career preferences
• The process of self-development
• The principles underlying group design, process and purpose
• The essentials of communication & the importance of clear objectives, right attitudes and skills.
• How to give and receive feedback

At the end of the subject, students should have developed their capacity to;
• Identify individual strengths and areas for development
• Prioritise, meet deadlines and engage in self-directed learning
• Give & receive constructive feedback that aids development
• Work effectively in a group
• Communicate complex ideas in written and oral form
• Design a presentation that is logical, clear and appropriate for a given audience
• Deliver an engaging and persuasive presentation


Related Course(s): Master of Biotechnology
Master of Operations Research and Management Science
Master of Science (Botany)
Master of Science (Chemistry)
Master of Science (Computer Science)
Master of Science (Earth Sciences)
Master of Science (Epidemiology)
Master of Science (Genetics)
Master of Science (Geography)
Master of Science (Information Systems)
Master of Science (Physics)
Master of Science (Vision Science)
Master of Science (Zoology)
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Environmental Science
Environmental Science

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