SCI201 Science in Modern Society (8)

Scientists work in a dynamic environment involving personal and institutional negotiations with social and ethical issues. In this subject, students will engage with issues that are important yet challenging to future scientists. For example, they will use a range of professional communication skills to explain ethical concepts to current international case studies to a range of audiences. Students will also explore alternative views of science and scientific practices such as Indigenous Australian and other Native peoples approaches to knowledge. Finally, students will broaden their professional attributes by comparing their chosen scientific discipline's code of conduct to that of other fields of science.


Session 2 (60)
Wagga Wagga Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: SCI201. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Agricultural, Environmental and Veterinary Sciences

Assumed Knowledge


Subject Relationships

SCI101 This subject provides a deeper extension of ideas explored in SCI101 and also supports the embedding of the appropriate Academic Skills the students need to develop to fulfil the subject criteria.

Incompatible Subjects


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • Be able to research examples, past and present, of the reciprocal impacts and influences of science and society and discuss the responsibilities of science to society.
  • Be able to locate information about scientific ideas and critically evaluate this information and its source.
  • Be able to use a variety of appropriate professional communication techniques to organise and present information about local and global issues in science in a balanced and authoritative way.
  • Be able to describe the professional attributes and behaviours associated with the codes of practice in a scientific discipline and compare and contrast them with those from other science disciplines.
  • Be able to explain the ethical constructs which underlie the codes of conduct of science and apply these principles to form a balanced discussion of the ethical dimension inherent in current global scientific challenges.
  • Be able to demonstrate an understanding of Indigenous Australian science and contributions to scientific enquiry and compare and contrast with other Indigenous knowledge systems and science.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Theoretical frameworks of ethical behaviour
  • Reciprocal impacts and influences of science and society
  • Major issues of science and society today, including sustainability
  • Indigenous Australian and other Native peoples science and science understandings
  • Professional practices for the disciplines, including OH&S
  • Professionally appropriate communication
  • Validity of information and sources
  • Work ownership, including plagiarism, acknowledging contributors

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of SCI201 in Session 2 2021. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Ethical frameworks
Professional practice
Blog 1
Blog 2
Blog 3
Pulling it all together

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: June 2022. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.