Growing an Academic Profile: Communication, Collaboration and Projects

9-12 February, 2018

Led by: Dr John Turner/University of Edinburgh and Dr Tom Parkinson/University of Kent.

This 4-day workshop developed and practiced a range of communication and project planning skills relevant to participants’ roles as academics and researchers. This included a focus on written and verbal communication in English with disciplinary specialists and non-specialists from other disciplines and sectors (e.g. research funders, end users and beneficiaries). Funding applications and collaboration were considered, as well as addressing any linguistic or other challenges emerging from online tutorials and webinars. The workshop also provided space for you to develop project ideas and build peer support networks with other participants. 

All four days were interactive and practical. Sessions were tailored to different levels of English language experience and ability, and this was an excellent opportunity for participants to practice and enhance their English language confidence in settings directly linked to an academic and research context. On day 1 participants were asked to write a 50-word Personal Research Statement understandable to researchers from outside their specialist field.

Workshop Aims

  • To introduce and provide an opportunity for participants to develop and practice a range of communication and project planning skills relevant to their role as academic researchers. This includes a focus on written and verbal communication with disciplinary specialists and non-specialists from other disciplines and sectors (e.g. research funders, end users and beneficiaries), collaboration, project planning and management.
  • An opportunity to practice and enhance their English language confidence and competence in settings directly linked to an academic and research context.
  • Space to build research collaborations and peer support networks with other participants.
  • Opportunities to address linguistic and other EAP challenges emerging from online tutorials and webinars, to further enhance the impact and content of future online support and activities.

To achieve these objectives an integrated workshop programme was designed and tailored to different levels of English language confidence and competence, providing plenty of time and space for practice and feedback. 

By the end of the workshop all participants will have:

  • A short written summary, in English, of their research interests suitable for a technical audience in their broad disciplinary area.
  • An equivalent written summary, in English, of their research for a non-specialist audience.
  • Practised and gained confidence in introducing their research interests in English in conversation (e.g. at conferences).
  • Gained a greater understanding of potential opportunities for collaboration and cooperation with their Cara Syria peer group.
  • Started to plan and develop ideas for future projects.

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