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Accredited science journalism diploma

Science journalism level 3 diploma

Course summary

£294.50 incl VAT. Payment options
3 x monthly payments of £98.16. No charges, interest or credit checks.
Dave Griffiths
An interest in science. Take our journalism challenge! 
Duration / hours:
Approximately 60-80 hours of study. You work at your own pace
ABC Awards level 3 diploma
Awarding body:
ABC Awards

Course review

Pam Sidwell: social media marketing course

Very quick turnaround time for grading assignments and some great constructive feedback. For anyone new to social media, or for someone who wants to build on their knowledge, this is an excellent starting point.

Pam Sidwell: social media marketing course

Read more


Course overview

A scientist with test tubesOur online science journalism course equips you with the skills you need to succeed as a freelancer or staff writer in this exciting specialism, even if you are a complete beginner.

Science journalists can expect to cover a wide array of subjects, including:

  • biology, zoology and the other life sciences
  • technology and computer science
  • physics, chemistry and engineering
  • environmental and social sciences

And within these broad areas, there are numerous specialisms and intersecting topics, such as ethics, innovations, and politics.

Our science journalism course trains you to identify appropriate markets for articles in the areas you are most interested in and to develop ideas they will want to publish.  

You will learn how to write for traditional print publications, as well as for multimedia platforms.

In addition, we teach you fundamental journalism skills, including finding expert sources, covering press conferences and record-keeping.

During his time as a student on our course, Shafkat Shahzad had a series of science articles published on the LocalGov website. See our news feed

Our comprehensive online science journalism course will teach you how to:

  • develop article ideas suitable for a range of science publications
  • source information, conduct research and carry out effective interviews
  • write articles and features on science topics for digital and print publications
  • apply media law and ethics to the world of science journalism
  • sell your work and get paid

When you graduate, you will receive the respected CMP Charter Mark as well as an accredited diploma.

See our alumni

Enquire about this course

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ABC awards logo

At the end of this course, successful learners will receive a Certificate of Achievement from ABC Awards, and a Learner Unit Summary, which lists the details of all the subjects they have completed as part of the course.

This science journalism course has been endorsed under the ABC Awards’ Quality Licence Scheme

We will also email you the fully accredited CMP diploma in science journalism, which is an industry recognised qualification that proves you are a qualified science journalist.

These awards will enable you to apply for science journalism jobs, develop your career, or help you find freelance work.


This course covers everything you need to know to get started as a science journalist.

Lesson 01: Introduction to science journalism
  • Examine what the science journalist does, and where you fit in
  • Analyse science magazines, and the science pages of local and national printed media and their websites, so you can generate article ideas and write relevant content
Lesson 02: Copy presentation and terminology
  • Submit science articles to printed and multimedia platforms in recognised formats
  • Learn industry jargon to communicate clearly with journalists, editors and publishers
Lesson 03: Notebook discipline and record keeping
  • Store and retain science journalism data safely, ethically and legally

Lesson 04: Contacts book
  • Record your contacts' information safely, legally and efficiently
Lesson 05: Sources and output
  • Use your science skills, knowledge, contacts and experience to produce articles to sell
  • Find original ideas for science articles using the internet and social media searches, and advanced data scraping techniques
  • Prepare your science stories and features for publication in print, online and on social media, and digital platforms
Lesson 06: Using a style guide
  • Ensure your science stories and features are presented consistently
Lesson 07: Who publishes what
  • Define different types of news
  • Understand different types of magazines, what they publish and who to
Lesson 08: Interviewing
  • Interview science contacts, and people who work with them, in person, online and by phone: everyone from scientists to researchers, and government officials to students 
  • Prepare to interview science VIPs and celebrities
Lesson 09: Newswriting techniques
  • Write science articles that are suitable for print, the web and social media
  • Attract the reader's attention by writing compelling starts to your science articles
  • Maintain the reader's interest in your science articles from start to finish
Lesson 10: Independent Press Standards Organisation: regulatory code
  • Adhere to the media's regulatory framework in your science journalism activities
Lesson 11: Feature writing
  • Write all kinds of science features: analysis, backgrounders, how-tos, and profiles, and adapt your content to fit different magazine formulas
Lesson 12: Press releases, reports and handouts
  • Use science press releases to produce original articles about breakthroughs, innovations, policies and controversies
  • Analyse and interpret scientific documents, reports and data and use them to generate article ideas
Lesson 13: Events, meetings and press conferences
  • Use live blogging and traditional reporting skills to cover briefings, meetings, conferences, protests and other science events 
Lesson 14: Media law basics
  • Keep your science copy safe from libel, copyright, confidence, data protection and privacy actions, and learn other laws that affect, and also protect science journalists
Lesson 15: Selling your work
  • Pitch your articles to the science media: who to approach, how and when, so you can negotiate the best deal

Where you could fit in as a science journalist

Science journalism provides an ideal opportunity to share your knowledge, be on the frontline of new developments and get paid for your efforts.

Our online science journalism course equips you with the skills you need to establish yourself in this exciting, varied and rewarding field.

While science journalism is open to anyone with the right training and a desire to succeed, it is a particularly attractive option for:

  • science students and graduates looking for a creative way to earn money from their knowledge
  • professionals and academics looking to escape the lab or lecture hall
  • science enthusiasts who love to learn about the latest developments and share their findings with anyone who wants to listen!

To succeed as a science journalist, you need the ability to interpret complex reports and research and write about them in an informative and accessible way.

You also need to be able to adapt your writing to suit a variety of markets, from informal blogs and mass market daily newspapers through to specialised journals.

In addition, you need solid journalism skills, the confidence to approach expert sources and the ability to ask the right questions.

Our science journalism course provides the ideal foundation for developing these skills and for launching your career.

During his time as a student on our course, Joe Turner had a number of articles published in leading science magazines and won a scholarship to cover the prestigious UK Conference of Science Journalists.

He also interviewed a head of state and an EU commissioner. See our news feed

As a science journalist, you could be:

  • researching and writing in-depth articles about the latest scientific breakthroughs
  • attending conferences and interviewing the world’s most respected scientists and innovators
  • reporting on science news as a staff writer for a leading newspaper or magazine
  • explaining how the latest scientific discoveries impact businesses, the environment and people’s daily lives

If you would like to use your passion, knowledge and expertise to experiment with an exciting new career, our comprehensive online science journalism course is the ideal formula.

Course tutor: Dave Griffiths

Journalist | writer | subeditor | proofreader

PA |Manchester Evening News |Orange

Dave is a freelance journalist, writer, sub editor and proofreader with 27 years' experience.

He will mark your work, answer your questions and give you friendly help and advice.

More about Dave

This course gets results

Our students get articles published most days. Many of them have gone on to become successful freelancers, and make a good living from writing.

We'll connect you with the right people

Science journalism is about knowing the right people: the editors, the publishers and the staff journalists who make the decisions.

Our tutors have a huge range of active contacts on newspapers, magazines, websites, blogs and radio / TV stations. They can make personal introductions for you when it is appropriate.

We have arrangements with top news and feature agencies. If your work is good enough, they will sell it for you, and split the proceeds with you 60-40%. You get the 60%!

And we also have databases with the contact details of thousands of UK newspaper, magazine and radio journalists - essential when you are selling work, looking for work experience or job hunting.

Many of our students already have the experiences, skills and relationships to produce article ideas.

We have the expertise to turn those ideas into marketable content, and the contacts to help them get it published.

Course delivery

You will have access to our Online Learning Area, where you can:

  • download course materials
  • submit assignments
  • use our college libraries and resources
  • chat to other students
  • keep up-to-date with college news

Our turn-around time for marking work is three working days. We usually provide same-day tutorial support on weekdays.

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When you finish

When you complete the course, you will receive two respected qualifications:

These recognised awards will add value to your CV, and help when you apply for journalism jobs or freelance work.

What you need to study science journalism

  • access to a computer, tablet or similar device
  • internet access
  • Microsoft Word or equivalent: OpenOffice, iWork pages
  • an email account
  • a camera and a video recorder. Smartphones or tablets are acceptable

Take our journalism challenge!  Claim your free ebook: Five vital steps to boost your career | FAQs

Why you'll benefit from studying with us

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