• Class Number 7732
  • Term Code 2960
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 12 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Graham Walker
    • Dr Graham Walker
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 22/07/2019
  • Class End Date 25/10/2019
  • Census Date 31/08/2019
  • Last Date to Enrol 29/07/2019
SELT Survey Results

Students in this course develop their science communication skills while training for and touring with the Shell Questacon Science Circus. The course includes experience in the development of science presentations and workshops, the presentation of science shows to audiences of all ages (with an emphasis on school-age audiences), the presentation of teacher development workshops, explaining science and exhibits to members of the public, promotion of a science outreach program, the operation of a travelling science exhibition, and the coordination of activities while on tour.

SCOM8004B taught in semester 2. It is the continuation of the studies begun in the first semester course SCOM8004A.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

On satisfying the requirements of this course, students will have knowledge, skills and experience in:

1. Explaining science and technology concepts to audiences of varied ages and backgrounds, including school students, teachers, general public, remote communities and Indigenous audiences
2. The design and delivery of science shows, resource materials and workshops on a range of science and technology topics at a level appropriate to a wide range of audiences including Indigenous audiences
3. The skills and attributes necessary to the efficient and effective functioning of a team, as well as an understanding of group dynamics and some experience in small team management
4. The operation of an outreach education program (including a travelling science exhibition)
5. Implementation of a media campaign to promote a travelling science outreach program

Research-Led Teaching

Theory informs practice – Alongside the ‘practical’ fieldwork/touring component that makes up much of SCOM8004, students will also become familiar with the academic literature and research that underpins science shows, workshops and other formats used on tour. Research on science shows and outreach is sparse, so relevant theory is often drawn from research on formal education, informal science education, science communication, psychology and other disciplines. This theoretical content will be presented both independently and as parts of sessions dealing with more practical aspects of show presentation, etc.

Students are expected to take initiative and do their own literature searches or consult lecturers/other experts to locate relevant research, in addition to that presented during lectures.

By the end of the course, you should not only be able to present an effective science show or workshop, but be able to research and understand the theoretical basis for what makes it effective.

Field Trips

Students in this course develop science communication skills that are applied touring with the Shell Questacon Science Circus. The course includes experience in the development of science presentations and workshops, the presentation of science shows to audiences of all ages (with an emphasis on school-age audiences), the presentation of teacher development workshops, explaining science and exhibits to members of the public, promotion of a science outreach program, the operation of a traveling science exhibition, and the coordination of activities while on tour.


Some students opt to do a work placement in the middle or at the end of the year, however this is not a formal requirement of the course and it is not assessed. It can, however, be extremely helpful for networks and employment opportunities after the course. If you’d like to do a placement, talk to Graham and/or the Coordinators as we may be able to connect you with organisations. ANU can also provide insurance if needed. Students need to cover any costs associated with placements.

Required Resources

There is no single set text for this course, however there are readings.

They are available online through the course Wattle site, mostly as .pdf files. Download and read them electronically or print as you see fit.

ANU Makerspace – At the start of the year you’ll be familiarised with the ANU Makerspace. The Makerspace is a fantastic resource if you need to repair show props or want to create new equipment for use on tour. Some consumables (3d printer filament, screws, electronic components, etc.) are provided free of charge from the Makerspace, however if you need additional materials for props to be used on tour consult with Coordinators re your needs/costs first, gain formal approval and keep receipts (as per the process with purchasing consumables on tour). Graham is happy to assist you with course-related activity in the Makerspace.

Students are strongly encouraged to use the ANU Makerspace and make the most of the equipment and staff expertise associated with it.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Other Information

The information here covers both SCOM8004a (semester 1) and SCOM8004b (semester 2). The two courses must be taken together and form a year-long course.

These courses are only available to students enrolled in the Masters of Science Communication Outreach.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 CURRENT STUDENTS: PLEASE CONSULT THE GOOGLE CALENDAR FOR DETAILS The information here covers both SCOM8004a (semester 1) and SCOM8004b (semester 2). The two courses must be taken together and form a year-long course. These courses are only available to students enrolled in the Masters of Science Communication Outreach.
2 Show instruction, development and safety training Introduction to scicomm/show research and literature February - March
3 Tour 1a and 1b - ACT and NSW March
4 Workshop/exhibit facilitation, teacher Professional Learning (PL) workshops Show, prop and demo development April-May
5 Indigenous cultural awareness training (South Coast NSW) April
6 Tour 2 - Qld May-June
7 Workshop development June-July
8 Workshop tour (indigenous audiences) / Tour 3 - NT August
9 Tour 4 - NSW October-November

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Show Analysis and Development - Part 1: Analysis 10 % 19/04/2019 10/05/2019 1,2,4
Show Analysis and Development - Part 2: Development 15 % 28/06/2019 20/07/2019 1,2,4
Creating New Props and Demos - Concept Note 0 % 30/04/2019 14/05/2019 1,2,4
Creating New Props and Demos 15 % 12/09/2019 30/09/2019 1,2,4
Science Show Videos (1 of 2) 10 % 17/06/2019 17/07/2019 1,2
Science Show Videos (2 of 2) 15 % 11/11/2019 30/11/2019 1,2
Indigenous Outreach and Workshop Tour - Part 1: Plan 10 % 25/07/2019 01/08/2019 1,2,4
Indigenous Outreach and Workshop Tour - Part 2: Debrief 5 % 01/08/2019 01/09/2019 1,2,3,4
Touring Assessment (part 1 of 2) 10 % 27/06/2019 15/07/2019 1,2,3,4,5
Touring Assessment (part 2 of 2) 10 % 11/11/2019 30/11/2019 1,2,3,4,5

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Participation is required in all relevant Shell Questacon Science Circus activities. Assessment of participation is incorporated into the assessment items.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 19/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 10/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,4

Show Analysis and Development - Part 1: Analysis

Details of task: The ability to critique your own performances and use your analysis to improve your shows is a critical skill to have as a presenter. Your shows should be continually changing and improving through the year – they should ‘evolve’. This two-part assessment asks you to do a Show Analysis (part 1) and then use that to inform the Show Development (part 2).


In this assignment you will undertake:

1.  Show Analysis - Analyse and reflect on your Science Circus school show and produce a written report that evaluates your content (e.g. the science, demos, etc.), performance (e.g. voice/body, dramatic aspects, demo delivery, etc.) and where they intersect, and also identifies some priorities for development.

2.  Show Development – Select aspect(s) for development, create a plan for improvement, begin trialing the improvements, identify indicators to gauge your progress, and report back on the outcomes.

Note the two work together, so think towards your Development while completing the Analysis.


PLAN AHEAD! The structure of this assignment means you need to work on it over a period of time to produce a quality outcome. It is recommended you begin drafting, researching and ESPECIALLY TAKING NOTES during Tour 1 even though the Show Development is not due until after Tour 2.


Theory informs practice – You should draw on the academic literature (and reference it) and formal and informal feedback from staff, peers and audiences to inform your self-critique and improvements. Note the academic literature on science shows is quite sparse, so you will need to use related academic areas (e.g. science education, informal science learning) and possibly even other fields such as the dramatic arts, clowning and magic performance. Get creative, but evidence based. There will be a lecture on pathways into the literature to get you started, but you should also do independent research and, if needed, consult with Graham (he’s here to help!).


Below are some key aspects of content and performance to critique and improve, but you may feel others are relevant too. The focus/weighting will depend a lot on your particular show:

  • Use of clear, accurate explanations with appropriate scientific concepts, explanations, language and performance for the particular audience
  • Show structure/storyline and connections between different segments
  • Use of props and execution of demonstrations
  • Enthusiasm, immediacy, humour and audience ‘connection’
  • Emotional engagement and the role of different emotions (e.g. surprise)
  • Relevance to the audience
  • Audience interaction (questions, call and response, volunteers, etc.)
  • Use of voice (clarity, projection, tone, volume, modulation, etc.), facial expressions, body language and movement on stage
  • Your personal touches; what makes the show unique.


It is strongly recommended you make preliminary notes during tour while show experiences are fresh in your mind. Notes taken directly after shows will be priceless.

In this assignment you are not being marked on the quality of your show. You are being assessed on how you critique, improve - including the quality of those improvements - and use research and theoretical perspectives to inform your progress (of course a good quality show will help with this though!). Many past students tell us at the end of the year they wish they had more chance to develop and personalise their show - this assignment is a perfect opportunity! Improvements may involve but are not limited to adding demos, developing performance techniques, sourcing or creating new demos/equipment, refining (not completely changing) the theme/focus of your show, etc.

Marking Criteria


  • Fully integrate academic literature throughout (not just a token reference or generic paragraph at the end), consultation with peers/experts and other relevant sources to directly support the analysis and development – make links between theory and practice.
  • Be neatly formatted, written in clear and concise language, have excellent spelling, punctuation and grammar, and include pictures/photos, diagrams and figures that enhance communication.

1. Show Analysis

To be eligible for a pass on this assignment your critique must:

  • Be 1000-1500 words long, excluding your final reference list. In-text citations and quotes count towards the 1000-1500 words.

Overall, your assignment should ideally:

  • Analyse in depth what content and performance was effective, what was not effective, and why – including insights from theory/literature
  • Consider a range of the aspects of show content and performance aspects as listed above, but focus on those most relevant to your show
  • Use broad evidence to support your analysis, including but not limited to: teacher surveys, peer/coordinator feedback, self-assessment, audience observations, audience feedback, and personal notes/reflections.
  • Synthesise, bring together and triangulate (use multiple sources of evidence to support a common conclusion) evidence to create structured logical arguments.
  • Use specific examples from the shows to support statements and illustrate ideas
  • Identify a shortlist of development priorities for your show.

Word limit: 1000-1500

Value: 10%

Due: April 19

Estimated return date: May 10

Submission: via Wattle

Assessment Task 2

Value: 15 %
Due Date: 28/06/2019
Return of Assessment: 20/07/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,4

Show Analysis and Development - Part 2: Development

2. Show Development

To be eligible for a pass on this assignment your piece must:

  • Be 1000-1500 words long, excluding your final reference list. In-text citations and quotes count towards the 1000-1500 words.

Overall, your assignment should ideally:

  • Identify one to three (depending on scope/size) development priorities, including a brief rationale for why you prioritised them
  • Develop creative, evidence/literature-based changes/additions/improvements to address these priorities and a plan for implementation
  • Identify both standard and creative indicators of progress/success, including how they can be measured or otherwise assessed
  • Implement the improvements, describe the process and outcomes, including how your indicators demonstrate progress
  • Use the literature and other reliable sources to support and make sense of the stages: identification, development, indicators, implementation and outcomes.

Word limit: 1000-1500

Value: 15%

Due: June 28

Estimated return date: July 20

Submission: via Wattle

Assessment Task 3

Value: 0 %
Due Date: 30/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 14/05/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,4

Creating New Props and Demos - Concept Note

Please refer to Assessment Task 4 below for full details.

Concept Note (hurdle requirement for Assessment Task 4) - Submit a one A4 page concept note outline 1-3 ideas, including a provisional idea of design, construction and materials (diagrams welcome), the science, how it might be presented, and where it fits into tour (i.e. during show X, as a busk, etc.). This is not formally graded but is a requirement and opportunity for feedback (it aims to get you thinking early).

Word limit: 1 A4 page

Value: NA

Due: 30 April

Estimated return date: 7 May

Submission: via Wattle

Assessment Task 4

Value: 15 %
Due Date: 12/09/2019
Return of Assessment: 30/09/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,4

Creating New Props and Demos

Details of task: In this assessment piece you and a teammate need to conceive, make and use a piece (or set) of novel equipment/prop in your shows. The equipment must be used in your primary, high school and/or exhibition show, and/or as a busk – select something practical (both theme and logistics) for use on tour. Note the busk option is there so you can, if you choose, make something outside the themes of your current shows and give flexibility for both team members. Note the prop should be suitable (big/visual enough) for use in a show; if you strongly want to make something small scale for use in Lab or a workshop, discuss with Graham first – you will have fewer opportunities to trial it.


You will submit a brief concept note (not graded but required) early on, a risk management worksheet (RMW) prior to tour 3 (not graded but required), followed by a written report and video.


This assignment is to be completed as a duo. Please discuss your ideas, inspirations, etc. with the wider team and identify someone suitable for fruitful collaboration (talk with Graham if any difficulties). Please lock in your teammate by 30 April at the latest.


PLAN AHEAD! The structure of this assignment means your duo needs to work on it over a period of time to produce a quality outcome. It is recommended you begin researching, designing, making and taking notes before and during Tour 2 even though it is not due until after Tour 3. It will be a busy period – don’t leave it to the last minute.


Your duo may (1) create something completely novel, (2) find a design and significantly refine it, or (3) substantially innovate on some existing equipment. If basing your project on options 2 or 3, and you’re at all unsure, talk to Graham to confirm there is enough creativity and innovation in your plan. It is fine to improve an existing idea, but we want to see evidence of individual creativity and design thinking – not just finding some designs on the web and making exactly that. Examples of significantly refine or substantially innovate could include but are not limited to:

  • Taking a store bought prop like a science toy and coming up with a very clever way to make it from cheap everyday items so people could relate better to it and make their own
  • Taking two demos and adapting the equipment so they can be fused into one new and creative piece of equipment and associated demo, e.g. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWckjEHAc9g
  • Seeing a Youtube clip of a demo, then making the equipment based on your own design and adding/refining features that make it better for communicating the science or engaging the audience.
  • Creatively adapting small-scale equipment that is typically used as a hands-on workshop activity into something large scale that will work with a show audience.


Where do we start? We suggest you refer back to the Energy prop making and show development Deep Dive you undertook at the start of the year, which has parallels with this assessment piece. The analysis and development assignment may also highlight areas a new prop could be effective. Props communicating contemporary research are also encouraged.


How complex should it be? Some of the best props are simple, but for the purposes of this assignment it would be wise to attempt something a bit more complex to show off your creativity, making and design skills.


Where will I make it? You are strongly encouraged to make use of the ANU Makerspace and its expert staff and (selected) free consumables for this assignment. Graham is also available to help and advise as you go through the process, and can steer you to other experts.


Safety! If in any doubt at all, consult Graham and the Coordinators regarding safety beforehand, especially if your equipment involves hazards such as fire, high pressure, liquid nitrogen, lasers, etc. As with any new demo, you will need to create an RMW, get it signed off by the Coordinators and trial it in a show.

Submit your RMW to the Coordinators via email (CC Graham) three weeks prior to when you want to use it on tour with the public/schools. i.e. by 6 May for Tour 2, or 15 July for Tour 3. Consider including a very basic video of the prop in action or physically showing the Coordinators, even if still to be refined, if your prop involves significant risks. You may negotiate with the Coordinators to vary these dates.

What are the constraints? Your duos creativity may be unbounded, but like all Science Circus props there are practicalities:

  • Size and portability – it needs to fit in the car on tour, including on days where you may have several different show kits and your luggage.
  • Cost – it should be cheap – a maximum of $50 – and wherever possible make use of existing resources (recycled items, stuff in the Cage, CPAS storeroom resources, etc.). If it requires consumables, these should also be low cost, and ideally reusable/recyclable/sustainable. Innovation in this area will be factored into assessment. Costs for materials can be reimbursed as per the petty cash procedure on tour – but must be approved by the Coordinators first.
  • Set up time – it should be easily setup (along with everything else) in the time you usually have to prepare for a show.
  • Robustness and reliability – it should work consistently without breaking (but note it may not the first time… this is part of the design process!).
  • Safety and messiness – it MUST be safe for you and the audience, including during the making process, and not create more mess or other negative effects than a standard show demo.


Marking Criteria

To be eligible for a pass on this assignment, as a duo you must:

1. Concept Note (hurdle requirement) (Assessment Task 3)

  • Submit a one A4 page concept note outline 1-3 ideas, including a provisional idea of design, construction and materials (diagrams welcome), the science, how it might be presented, and where it fits into tour (i.e. during show X, as a busk, etc.). This is not formally graded but is a requirement and opportunity for feedback (it aims to get you thinking early). DUE 30 April.
  • Submit a risk management worksheet (RMW). DUE 3 weeks before tour or by negotiation with Coordinators.
  • Use the equipment on tour.

2. Creating New Props and Demos Report

  • Submit a 3-7 minute video. The video should include presentation of the equipment as a demo for a general audience, as you would in a school or Exhibition show, with equal contributions by both duo members. You may use footage from a recorded show, or film a piece to camera.
  • Submit a document including:
  • A write up of the demo in the same style, format and length (~300 words) as those in your show scripts, using the headings “Demo Name, Science concept, Equipment required, Procedure and Explanation”. 
  • The design rationale, how/why it developed, and notes on the making process
  • Reflection/analysis/informal evaluation of how it was received on tour
  • Refer to the criteria below for guidance as to what you may want to highlight.


Overall, your equipment and demo should ideally:

  • Be highly creative.
  • Show evidence both team members have contributed equally.
  • Establish clear goals for the science being communicated and have that reflected in the design.
  • Incorporate deliberate, thought-out design features that make it more engaging, for example design features that contribute to clearer display of the science, or that make it more emotionally engaging (think back to the emotions Deep Dive).
  • Make innovative use of everyday items, recycled/repurposed items and/or digital manufacturing (3D printing, etc.) in ways that enhance the motivational and science communication potential of the equipment.
  • Be aware of practical and logistical constraints and limitations (e.g. size, cost, set up time, portability, robustness, messiness, need for consumables, reliability, and especially safety) and reflect that in the design.
  • Show evidence that you have tested and refined the prop and associated demonstration.
  • Integrate academic literature, consultation with peers/experts and other relevant sources in the design, making and understanding of the audience response.
  • (Document) Be neatly formatted, written in clear and concise language, have excellent spelling, punctuation and grammar, and include diagrams and figures that enhance communication.
  • (Video) Have simple but quality production with well lit or deliberately used lighting, clear sound, minimal background noise, good framing, and smooth and minimal (if any) editing.


Length: 1000-1500 words, excluding your final reference list / 3-7 minute video

Value: 15%

Due: September 12

Estimated return date: September 30

Submission: video: deliver USB to Graham or upload video and send link / document: via Wattle

Assessment Task 5

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 17/06/2019
Return of Assessment: 17/07/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2

Science Show Videos (1 of 2)

Details of task: Performance of science shows plays a major part in your fieldwork delivering the Shell Questacon Science Circus. This assignment will assess your ability to perform a high quality show.


You will film and submit two recorded shows (note due dates below):

  1. Exhibition show during Tour 2 (10%)
  2. School show during Tour 4 (15%)


Marking criteria

To be eligible for a pass on this assignment your must:

  • Submit two science show videos – an Exhibition show AND then a school show


Ideally your show should demonstrate:

Science content, explanation and communication:

Suitable level and explanation for the audience, with science integrated into performance rather than tacked on after each demo

  • Accurate scientific explanations enhanced using creative analogies, physical actions, and/or other creative methods
  • Performance of demonstrations with safety, creativity, ease and confidence
  • Use of key communication messages
  • Logical structure with smooth flow, effective conceptual and narrative sequencing, and smooth links/segues

Performance and audience engagement:

  • Good pace with plenty of demonstrations - action-packed but not rushed
  • Well managed audience interaction, questioning, and use of volunteers in different ways (single, multiple, whole audience)
  • Enthusiasm, immediacy and audience ‘connection’
  • ‘Strategic’ use of performance techniques (where they enhance the communication of science or other key objectives) including appropriate audience interaction, humour, drama and/or other skills (e.g. music or dance)
  • Use of suitable style, tone and language for the particular audience

Presentation skills:

  • Clear voice, projected strongly and clearly
  • Variation in pitch, volume and pace of voice which enhances engagement and communication of the science (strategic use)
  • Good eye contact and strategic use of facial gestures and body movement
  • Clear sight-lines and visuals for the audience, particularly the visibility of demonstrations
  • Use of presentation techniques to control the audience

Relevance, creativity, personalisation and show development:

  • Use of everyday examples of the science concepts, especially where these connect/appeal to the particular audience
  • Innovation and creativity refining the show from the original show notes
  • New content and demonstrations that fits in the show theme
  • Personal touches such as referencing background expertise, unique anecdotes, etc. which enhance content in the show
  • Evidence of application of feedback.

This assignment will only assess your own show and not any joint introductions and conclusions or busks. Only the show should be submitted in the video file.


Value: 25% - 10% Video 1 (Exhibition), 15% Video 2 (school)

Video requirements: You should edit/record such that the file is only your show performance. The video file should be in a common video format, e.g. mpeg, avi, etc. Please do your best to ensure good audio quality. A front-on view works best.

Due dates:

  • Video 1 (Exhibition) due June 17 (last day of tour)
  • Video 2 (school) due November 11 (last day of tour)

Estimated return date: one month after

Submission: Give the coordinators your video for collation onto a single USB/drive.

Assessment Task 6

Value: 15 %
Due Date: 11/11/2019
Return of Assessment: 30/11/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2

Science Show Videos (2 of 2)

See detail in Assessment Task 5 above

Assessment Task 7

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 25/07/2019
Return of Assessment: 01/08/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,4

Indigenous Outreach and Workshop Tour - Part 1: Plan

Details of task: During the year you will take part in in-depth Australian indigenous cultural awareness sessions, followed by a workshop tour to schools with a high indigenous population. This assessment piece asks you and a teammate to plan a workshop for indigenous audiences, justify its design and reflect on how you have considered indigenous culture and relevance in its design. You will need to submit a workshop plan and workshop justification. You will submit the plan and justification in a pair.


This will be followed by a round-table debrief where the whole team will report on and discuss learnings, possible changes, reflections and so forth.


Workshop plan

The workshop plan should include:

  • A running sheet showing in brief the key segments (including setup and pack down), brief dot point content overview and key learning/communication outcomes of each segment, timing, any key logistical/technical/WHS issues, etc. Note you need to prepare a draft running sheet prior to the workshop pitches, date TBC (check the Google calendar).
  • A Risk Management Worksheet for the workshop using the same template as you use for show demos, but with a different row for each workshop activity.
  • A materials list separated into:
  • equipment reused in each workshop (e.g. scissors, marbles, etc.)
  • consumables (e.g. vinegar, cornflour, etc.) per session based on a group size of 30 students. For consumables such as a roll of sticky tape which will last for multiple workshops, note that in brackets with an estimate of how many workshops it will cover, e.g. 1 ream of paper (enough for 5 workshops). You will need to estimate quantities; be generous in your estimations so you won’t run out, but not excessive.
  • Your materials list should be highly specific especially:
  • as to quantities, e.g. 5 x scissors, 4 litres white vinegar, 500g baking soda
  • where specific details are needed for functionality, e.g. 5 x 1.25 litre soft drink (not still water) bottles including lids.


Be careful to be precise, clear and unambiguous in these documents so they are a useful planning and logistics tool to run the workshop. They should be written in such a way that someone else with Science Circus/outreach experience could use them to run your workshop (alongside practical training) but don’t need to contain every step in every activity – just key/summary details.


Workshop justification

The justification should include:

  • An evidence-based rationale of why the methods and content/activities your team are using should be effective, including support from the literature.
  • A statement discussing how your team have considered and incorporated indigenous culture, and how you have adapted content and methods to be culturally appropriate and relevant to an indigenous audience. This section should be justified using both team members’ experiences, learnings, insights, reflections, interpretations, etc. from the cultural awareness training earlier in the year, and the workshop training beforehand, along with the academic literature. Independent research is encouraged.


Marking Criteria

Plan and Justification

To be eligible for a pass on this assignment your team’s plan and justification must:

  • Include a plan, RMW and materials list (no fixed page limit)
  • Include a justification of between 750-1000 words.


Overall, your team’s assignment should ideally:

  • Use clear and efficient formatting, and have precise, detailed and clear content/language in the plan, RMW and materials list so it is a useful document for workshop planning and management.
  • Justify that the content and methods are culturally appropriate and relevant to an indigenous audience using your own personal learnings and insights from the indigenous cultural awareness training.
  • Integrate academic literature (including literature with indigenous focus/perspectives), consultation with peers/experts and other relevant sources to support the workshop methods/content and how it is culturally appropriate and relevant to an indigenous audience.
  • Be neatly formatted, written in clear and concise language, have excellent spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • Include tables, diagrams, charts and/or figures that enhance communication of key ideas.


Content limit: plan (no fixed length, but not verbose), justification 750-1000 words, not including your reference list.

Value: 10%

Due: 25 July

Estimated return date: 1 August


Note you need to prepare a draft running sheet prior to the workshop pitches (date TBA). Please bring this to the pitches.

Assessment Task 8

Value: 5 %
Due Date: 01/08/2019
Return of Assessment: 01/09/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Indigenous Outreach and Workshop Tour - Part 2: Debrief

See additional information in Assessment Task 6

Round-table debrief

To be eligible for a pass on Assessment Task 6 you must:

  • Attend and make contributions to the round-table debrief session (Graham and the Coordinators will help moderate so everyone will be given opportunities to contribute).


Overall, your contribution should ideally:

  • Give a succinct high-level summary of your workshop, what was effective, what wasn’t, and any other key learnings from implementation.
  • Discuss why you think things worked, or not, using well thought-out arguments based on a range of evidence such as observations, peer/teacher/student feedback, your own insights/speculations, and the literature.
  • Consider the indigenous audience and associated literature and where your findings are relevant to it (revisit your justification).
  • Provide evidence-based recommendations for changes to the workshop.
  • Make a thorough contribution while also respecting, giving space and engaging with the contributions of others.


Value: 5%

Due: Date TBC (check the Google calendar). Please note the dates used in the Assessment Summary are indicative only.

Estimated return date: two weeks following

Assessment Task 9

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 27/06/2019
Return of Assessment: 15/07/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Touring Assessment (part 1 of 2)

Details of task: Touring makes up a large portion of your year in the Master of Science Communication Outreach program. While on tour, there are certain qualities that are important for the Shell Questacon Science Circus to operate effectively.


Three key qualities you need to be effective include, but are not limited to:


  • You take initiative, assist, volunteer and actively tackle team problems
  • You cooperate and collaborate with others to produce outcomes that exceed what you could do independently (‘whole is greater than the sum of its parts’)
  • You are effective in your assigned role
  • You adapt to different roles, sometimes at short notice
  • You help and support other teammates in carrying out roles/tasks
  • You exert similarly high effort as teammates towards the team’s objectives
  • You consider the thoughts and feelings of and relationships with teammates
  • You’re part of a homogenous team, avoiding cliques or excluding individuals
  • You don’t expect or allow others to ‘pick up the slack’ for you
  • For an academic perspective, see http://pubsonline.informs.org/doi/pdf/10.1287/orsc.12.4.435.10635.


  • You seek out and actively listen to feedback, discuss it, and apply it
  • You give feedback, provide guidance and make helpful suggestions in a constructive, thoughtful and tactful manner, at a suitable time
  • You are proactive giving relevant information and updates to others
  • You consider the value of information from the perspective of others
  • You actively resolve conflicts and seek guidance with difficulties
  • You don’t let personal issues negatively impact on team or public communication; you seek help when this is difficult.


  • You plan thoroughly, you plan as part of a team, are well-prepared, ready for contingencies, and able to adapt plans as necessary during a task
  • You are punctual; you advise others where things prevent this
  • You are never racist, sexist or otherwise discriminatory
  • You keep a calm exterior when dealing with stressful problems
  • You wear your uniform with pride and are well presented when dealing with the public (but eccentricity done well is fine!)
  • You are a positive ambassador for the partners and sponsors of the program and science more broadly
  • You think about when it is appropriate to use a mobile phone or other devices, particularly for personal matters.


These qualities are particularly important during your roles as Big Brother, Floor Manager and in the Media Team. These will be taken into account for assessment.


Your mark will be based on the ongoing assessment of your tour coordinators, other staff/lecturers including ANU staff visiting tours, and a self/peer assessment. You will be graded once in the middle and once at the end of the year. You will receive feedback after each tour and are encouraged to have a continuous dialogue with coordinators.


For the self/peer assessments, you will be provided a template which allocates marks to each of the above criteria. You will give you and your peers a mark out of 100. These self/peer marks will remain confidential. You do not have to make extensive comments, if any. If you give a particularly low mark, however, it would be helpful if you could add a brief comment explaining why – this comment will only be seen by ANU lecturers during the grading process and will remain confidential.


Marking criteria

This assessment is primarily based on, but not limited to, the above qualities: teamwork, communication and professionalism.


To be eligible for a pass on this assignment you must:

  • Complete all assigned Science Circus tours
  • Complete the peer assessments


Value: 20% (10% + 10%)

Due: Touring Assessment 1: June 27; Touring Assessment 2: November 10

Estimated return date: Touring Assessment 1 July 15; November 30

Submission: peer assessment via Wattle

Assessment Task 10

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 11/11/2019
Return of Assessment: 30/11/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5

Touring Assessment (part 2 of 2)

See detail in Assessment Task 9

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Assignments will be returned via Wattle and/or by email. Feedback and grading is typically via comments in the documents.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr Graham Walker

Research Interests

Science communication, science shows, informal learning environments, emotion and motivation in science communication, capacity building and international development, making and makerspaces

Dr Graham Walker

Dr Graham Walker

Research Interests

Dr Graham Walker

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