SCISCHOL 202 : Research and Discovery


2021 Semester Two (1215) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

An exploration of scientific research skills and communication. Students will develop an understanding of the impact of culture on scientific discovery, the skills to develop and document a research proposal, and how to communicate scientific work in an area of choice.

Course Overview

Science and the continued quest for greater understanding and discovery in scientific disciplines is influenced by a range of forces that impact basic and applied research, as well as how research and understanding can be applied to solve problems, improve quality of life, and support further inquiry.  In this course, students will explore the grounding of scientific disciplines, the processes of innovation that help to move science from knowledge to impact and utility, and the design and processes of scientific.  The course also covers the boundaries of disciplines and the role of cross-disciplinary, interdisciplinary, and transdisciplinary research and understanding in creating new knowledge and developing solutions for complex problems through the application of this science.  The course is split between Semester 1, which is focused primarily on evaluating the role and meaning of disciplines within science as well as the process of innovation used to moved from discovery to opportunities for application.  In Semester 2, the course focuses on exploration of scientific research skills and communication, and also the impact of culture on scientific discovery, the skills to develop and document a research proposal, and how to communicate scientific work. In a series of lectures and discussions, we will consider some of the diverse influences that constrain and guide scientific enquiry.  Students will engage in dialogue and debates, and work individually and in groups to explore the topics in this course.

More information about the Science Scholars Programme can be found here: 

Course Requirements

Prerequisite: Programme Director approval To complete this course students must enrol in SCISCHOL 202 A and B, or SCISCHOL 202

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities
Graduate Profile: Bachelor of Science

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Explore the importance of scientific disciplines, the context of disciplinarity, and the boundaries of and amongst disciplines within and outside of science. (Capability 1 and 6)
  2. Describe and discuss known limitations of scientific investigation. (Capability 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  3. Critically explore why global challenges are not simply resolved by science or technological innovation. (Capability 1, 2, 3, 5 and 6)
  4. Critically evaluate innovation processes and how these can be applied to scientific knowledge and discovery to solve complex problems and address challenges. (Capability 1, 2 and 6)
  5. Explain and describe the origins of diverse opinions on global challenges. (Capability 4, 5 and 6)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Participation and Engagement 100% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5
Participation and Engagement

Key Topics

Global challenges. What do they have in common and why have we not been able to solve them?
How do values relate to science? What role does culture play in scientific inquiry?
Relations between modern crises and historical societal changes
Modelling, uncertainty, and the limits of science.

Special Requirements

Participation in discussion is essential.

Workload Expectations

This is equivalent to a 7.5 point course, where students are expected to spend 6 hours per week involved in each part of the course.

For this course, you can expect 2 hours of face-to-face time (primarily lectures & discussion) and 2 hours of reading and thinking about the content and 2 hours of work on assignments, projects or reflections.  

Delivery Mode

Campus Experience

Attendance is expected at scheduled activities to complete components of the course.
Some lectures may be available as recordings.
The course may include live in person or online events.
The activities for the course are scheduled as a standard weekly timetable.

Learning Resources

There is n0 text book for this course, but readings (scientific and popular articles) and videos will be assigned in preparation for class discussion, assignments, and projects.

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

Digital Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Learning Continuity

In the event of an unexpected disruption we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and your assessment is fair, and not compromised. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the University Website for information about how to proceed.

Depending on the different alert levels NZ may be at, the following will apply:

Level 1:  Delivered normally as specified in delivery mode
Level 2: You will not be required to attend in person.  All teaching and assessment will have a remote option.
Level 3 / 4: All teaching activities and assessments are delivered remotely

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course you may be asked to submit your coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. The final decision on the completion mode for a test or examination, and remote invigilation arrangements where applicable, will be advised to students at least 10 days prior to the scheduled date of the assessment, or in the case of an examination when the examination timetable is published.

Published on 11/12/2020 02:39 p.m.