PhD technical speaking courses
Improve your ability to communicate your research accurately and professionally by joining our technical speaking courses
Term dates 2017-18
Autumn term- Block A registration is now open!
Block A: 16 Oct-10 Nov
Block B: 13 Nov-8 Dec
Block A: 22 Jan-16 Feb
Block B: 19 Feb-16 Mar
Block A: 30 April-25 May
Block B: 28 May-22 Jun
Three new CfAE technical speaking courses are now available for PhD students.
Effective Speaking 1 and Effective Speaking 2 are courses that guide and support PhD students in the early stages of their PhD research and in the run up to their ESA. On these courses, students will develop the language and skills needed for effective and clear communication of their research projects.
Effective Presentation Skills eases students into confident and competent communication of their science to a live audience.
Effective Speaking 3 gives students the oppotunity to consider the most appropriate language, voice and approach to engaging with others in the academic community. We focus on networking, presenting and avoiding pitfalls in the viva.
All speaking courses are offered in the autumn, spring and summer terms. PhD students will be contacted via a termly email from the CfAE administrator informing them of upcoming courses and registration dates at least 3 weeks before the start of every term.
Technical speaking courses for PhD students
For students in the first 3 months of their PhD:
Effective Speaking 1
This is a 4-week course (1 hour once a week) designed to guide and support students during months 1-3 of their PhD. Students can practise talking about their research area, their plans and strategies, and the setting up of their research project. They will also practise language functions such as explaining key concepts orally, adapting explanations and content to the knowledge base of the listener, and negotiating politely.
For students 6-9 months into their PhD:
Effective Speaking 2
This is a 4-week course (1 hour once a week) preparing students for activities in the run up to the ESA as well as for the ESA spoken element itself. It is only offered to students who are around 6-9 months into their PhD. Students practise speaking about their research area and identifying connections with the research of others; they discuss gaps in the literature, outline methodologies they plan to adopt, give a detailed technical explanation of their work and practise answering questions. They are encouraged to be both concise and precise.
For 2nd-year PhD students:
Effective Presentation Skills for PhD Students
This course is aimed at 2nd-year PhD students who would like to improve presentation skills such as voice control, confidence, designing effective PowerPoint slides, judging one’s audience, improving pronunciation of key terms, and performance evaluation.
For final-year PhD students:
Effective Speaking 3
This is a 4-week course (1 hour once a week) for final-year PhD students, preparing them for a range of activities in the final stages of the PhD. They will consider networking, attending conferences (asking questions and presenting), as well as preparing for the viva. They will have the opportunity to practise through role play, prepared speaking tasks (the elevator pitch) and discussing approaches to these through pair work and group discussion. They will have an opportunity to consider how to use networking as an opportunity to further their careers and will also use viva practice to explore dealing with challenging questions.