Thinking Scientifically

Subject SCIE20001 (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2016:

Semester 2, Parkville - Taught online/distance.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period 25-Jul-2016 to 23-Oct-2016
Assessment Period End 18-Nov-2016
Last date to Self-Enrol 05-Aug-2016
Census Date 31-Aug-2016
Last date to Withdraw without fail 23-Sep-2016

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: This subject is taught entirely online
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours


50 points of level-1 subjects

Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Dr Andrew Drinnan


Subject Overview:

In this subject students will learn the fundamentals of the methods used in science practice, how to construct and evaluate a scientific argument, and how processes of scientific investigation are applied across the diverse range of scientific disciplines. Contextual examples will be used from current scientific research projects in the Faculty of Science as well as contemporary topical examples that are prominent in the media and public policy arena. The subject will provide an appreciation of the scope of science. It will help develop students’ critical thinking in science both to support and inform choice in their undergraduate program and to appreciate and evaluate science in the wider community context. Students will learn the application of scientific methods and how they are applied across the whole range of scientific disciplines, including the social sciences where appropriate.

Learning Outcomes:
  • Understand scientific methodology
  • Construct a scientific argument
  • Make a scientific observation and interpretation
  • Understand different modes of scientific writing
  • Appreciate the range of sciences practised across different disciplines
  • Analyse current issues from a scientific perspective
  • Three online quizzes - spaced at regular intervals across the semester (total of 16.7%)
  • Four module assessment tasks - 1000 words (16.7% each)
  • Exam - delivered and submitted online (16.7%)
Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • Critical thinking and scientific inquiry
  • Written communication
  • Independent land self-motivated learning
  • Learning in an online environment
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Science-credited subjects - new generation B-SCI and B-ENG.

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