I think you'll be OK on regular STF's, but on the Elite ones the shortcomings would become pretty apparent. If you've never skippered an escort before the thing that will amaze you is how hard it is to simply stay alive. I have a tac captain and started out on cruisers, but switched to escorts when I hit L/C (or so). At first I was blowing up all over the place, until I learned how to train my Boffs for an escort, what equipment to get and basically learned what works and what doesn't. On the occasional elite mission I still blow up all over the place, but in an escort some missions just go like that
If you want to do an escort right and really have fun with it, I'd start from scratch with a new tac captain and build from the ground up.
I've got an Advanced Escort. It's a little fragile for my tastes, but it's pretty kickass and well worth it for a science captain who wants to focus on damage. It makes lining up your Subnucleonic Beam easier in PvP and PvE, as well.
Properly equipped and set up, you can push out very respectable damage that'll make tactical officers blink (though they'll still vastly overshadow you when they use their cooldowns)
Your ability in this game depends much on your skill - how you play, how you set up your abilities, which abilities you choose, etc. Class matters, but not that much. A tac in an escort does have a higher theoretical dps than a sci in an escort, but as a sci in an escort, I find myself out dpsing many tactical officers in PVP and PVE.
The good tactical officers, I can't beat, especially not in burst damage, but as far as PVE is concerned, the dps a science escort can put out is more than enough to handle elite stfs
The two Prometheus variants are the most sci-oriented escorts, but feel free to try whichever ones you want.
The only benefit you get from flying a science vessel as a science officer is to be able to spend your skill points more efficiently, but science powers are so broken now it really does not benefit you at the moment.
Scientific vessel with tac profile Luna class and variants.
With the MVAM you will do heavy damage, but Lt Comander Boff will help you on your science duty. With Science ship you'll have lots of science abilities and a good tactical profile, but even not equals than any escort.
Don't worry, my main char is a vulcan science char flying on Ody tac cruiser. Your Boff and your ship with your char are a "all". If you change a bit of anything you will be adjust the rest. But you can do great things with any vessel. My cruiser have a high (to be a cruiser) DPS and with science skills of my char, the cruiser is deadly (with tac char you do greats amount of damage, with eng char, you can mantain your ship on very hard conditions. But with sci char, you work is more dificult: you can help if all group are close to you with dampening field, but you have the more special weapons. You can do that any friendly ship do more damage a one ship and you can remove her skills when she thinks that she can survive at your atack... quit RPS from a enemy when that use it to save his life and recover her shield is one of more beutifull things on the game... of course, that is more usefull on PVP than PVE. But you chose the momment on your profit.
On space for my, science is the most dificult char to use... but maybe, to me the best when you use with wisdom.
Thanks to everybody for fun, sorry for my bad english.
Most of the pros and cons have already been addressed, but I have a Sci VA who flys in the Prometheus so I'd thought I'd chime in.
First, as other have said, you need to get BOff powers that will help your captain in an escort. Flying an escort is about DPS and moderate surviability. In an STF, for instance, you can sacrifice a little survivability if you have a good team who can pick up your healing a little. In PvE, you can pretty much rip through opponents very easily while running just some healing abilities. In PvP, like STF's, if you are with a good team, you don't need as much survivabilty.
A good basic (and I mean basic) build, you would want your 4 front ports to have 3 cannons or heavy cannons and a torpedo of some kind. Your rear 3 slots would be turrets. I am sure you have played enough to realize that all energy weapons should be the same kind. I would suggest that you spend the C-points and get the "point defense system" that is available on the Sao Pauolo +1 class you can purchace at commander level. The PDS is a very good tool to help you fend off lots of targets (heavy torps included). Just my opinion, anyway
One thing to consider, also, is do you want to do AOE (area of effect) damage or single target damage? If AOE, train your tac BOff's in Cannon: Scatter Volley and Torpedo: Spread. If you prefer single target, than you should be running Cannon: Rapid Fire and Torpedo: High Yield. Other Tactical powers that really help are Attack Pattern: Omega, Tactical Team, and Attack Pattern: Beta.
Some Sci Powers that are good to help you not to pop quickly are Science Team, Hazard Emitters, and Transfer Shield Strength. For Engineering powers, I usually use Engineering Team and Emergency Power to Shields or Emergency Power to Weapons (if I have enough healing). Another that I usually don't use, but is very popular, is Auxillary Power to Structural Integrity Field.
For consoles I generally run the Borg console from "Assimilation", PDS console from the Sao Pauolo Class, three of the tactical beam consoles that match my weapons, and one of the tac consoles that matches my torpedos. For Engineering consoles I like Elecromagnetic Hull Plating and the console that helps Auxillary powers (this one helps your sci powers heal better or hit harder in the case of Subnuc or Gravity Well/Tyken's Rift). If you can afford it, for the remaining Sci console, buy the shield enhancers.
I run my captain in PvP and STF's and I usually do alright using a build like this. As you play it a little more, you might find you like a different set up....Play around with it.
I'm a level 50 science captain. I have only ever gotten science class ships. I was wondering if it is worth getting an escort class ship for use in some STF missions.
Science Captains can do quite well in Escorts if flying Escorts is your preferred style of play. My Science Captain has always been in an Escort (aka Sciscort); and it works well in both PvE and PvP.
I'd suggest either the MVAM or the Fleet Escort--My Sci Captain is currently in a Fleet. I do elite STFs and PvP daily in it. It really just depends on your playstyle, if you're a good pilot, then you'll probably be good in an Escort regardless of what class your Captain is.