About the role
Science writers research, write and edit scientific news, articles and features in a range of different formats, including:
- business, trade and professional publications
- specialist scientific and technical journals
- general media
- promotional brochures
- press releases
- podcasts and blogs
As print media circulation falls, roles in traditional scientific journalism are reducing. However, there is a growing need for organisations to promote their research to the wider public (often a requirement of funders), so universities, NGOs, charities etc. are increasingly recruiting writers to produce blogs, write web articles and use social media.
Skills: Key skills include a flair for writing clear, compelling copy and the ability to find a good angle on a story. As an increasing number of writers are working on a freelance basis for a range of different employers, networking and business management skills are also important.
Qualifications: Almost all science writers will have an undergraduate degree, but if you have the right skills, and substantial evidence of your talent (e.g. obtained through writing for the student media), a postgraduate qualification is not necessary.
However, an increasing number of entrants are undertaking a masters course in science journalism, writing or communication.
PhD students can acquire experience during their degree. Science blogging, outreach and public engagement activities offer opportunities to develop communication skills and experience.
Search the Prospects postgraduate courses database for relevant courses.