Grant Writing and Science communication


Course Objective

To teach students how to write funding applications and communicate
scientific findings to peers,participants, and the public.

Course Content

The course consists of two interrelated parts: writing grants and
communicating science. Both are key skills for a successful academic
Grant writing has become an essential aspect of academic life. To write
a successful grant one needs a good overview of the body of literature,
identify the knowledge gaps, come up with an innovative, challenging,
yet feasible research plan, and of course good writing skills. In this
course, successful applicants will share their knowledge and will help
students write their own proposal in the format of a PhD fellowship.
Grant proposals are not only evaluated on the scientific content, but
also on aspects like track record and societal importance and impact.
Writing these sections will also be discussed and practiced.
Academics should also be able to clearly communicate scientific findings
to their colleagues and society at large. This involves both oral and
written communication via diverse media, like conference talks, journal
articles, television, radio, newspapers, magazines, blogs and twitter.
Articles on science communication with advice and red flags will be
discussed. Students will read, watch, and listen to examples of good
science communication. Students will also learn by doing and by giving
and receiving feedback.

Teaching Methods

Tuition consists of lectures, homework assignments, and active
participation in discussions and hands-on activities in class.

Method of Assessment

The following elements count towards the final grade:
• Mock radio or television interview about the student’s first
internship (20%)
• Article for annual newsletter for study participants (20%)
• Fellowship application (60%)
N.B. All grades should be 5.5 or higher to pass the course.


The reading list will consist of websites of funding agencies (e.g.,
NWO, European Research Council), papers about grant writing, science
communication, and journal peer review (e.g.,, and
examples of popular scientific articles, blogs, and twitter feeds by and
interviews with renowned scientist in the field (e.g., blog:, twitter:,
radio interviews:

Target Audience

Students of the Research Master Genes in Health and Behaviour who have
successfully passed at least four out of the five first-year courses.

General Information

Course Code P_MGWSCCOM
Credits 6 EC
Period P3
Course Level 400
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Fac. of Behavioural and Movement Science
Course Coordinator dr. E. van Bergen
Examiner prof. dr. J.C.N. de Geus
Teaching Staff dr. E. van Bergen
prof. dr. J.C.N. de Geus

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Teaching Methods Lecture
Target audiences

This course is also available as: