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Greeting from the Dean

March 2010 will mark the end of our Communicators in Science and Technology Education Program (CoSTEP for short) – a project of the Special Coordination Funds for Promoting Science and Technology provided by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. As from April, the venture will continue as an education program implemented independently by Hokkaido University.

Organizationally, it will become the Communication in Science and Technology Education and Research Program within the Center for Research and Development in Higher Education (based in the city’s North 17, West 8 area).*

As the content of the new education program will be based on and evolved from the achievements of its previous embodiment, it will continue to be referred to as CoSTEP.

The new CoSTEP initiative will also offer training courses equivalent to master’s degree programs with the aim of producing science and technology communicators for both graduate students and adult learners. The composition of the education program will remain unchanged, with a systematic combination of lectures, seminars and practices. We will also continue to offer e-learning courses to provide educational opportunities to individuals living far away and those with busy lifestyles.

The new CoSTEP will also launch a number of fresh initiatives. We will make full use of the research and education programs under way at Hokkaido University as resources for practices and seminars in CoSTEP, and will also offer general-education classes related to science and technology communication for graduate students. Short-term courses for faculty members and others will also be offered on an as-needed basis.

CoSTEP will also aim to enhance two-way communication in science and technology, providing education on information transfer in these fields through a host of practical activities. In addition to using print media (such as public relations magazines), organizing science cafes and other communication events, and utilizing audio and visual media, websites and graphic design, we will also seek to explore new possibilities related to these fields.

Hokkaido University’s provision of degree courses (both master’s and doctoral) in science and technology communication in addition to classes in CoSTEP allows students to design their ideal learning schedule.

Enrolling in CoSTEP may be a good option for people interested in learning more about science and technology communication.

* Lessons will continue to be offered at the building of School of Science until July 31, 2010. The CoSTEP Office will also remain there till then.