What is public engagement, why is it important, and how do you know if your public engagement activities are successful? Our masterclasses will help you build on your public engagement goals to deliver enjoyable and meaningful activities for you and your participants.
The Societal Engagement team offer seven masterclasses to cater for a range of engagement experience:
- Two core masterclasses – for staff members with little or no prior experience of public engagement looking to expand their understanding and get involved.
- Five optional masterclasses – for staff to build on the context and background of the core masterclasses to broaden their skills and put their learnings into practice.
Dates for the 2022/23 academic year will be released in August 2022. Sign-up to our newsletter to be the first to know when they are announced.
About the Masterclasses
Core Masterclasses 1 and 2: Exploring, Planning and Evaluating Engagement
Our two core masterclasses are run as a joint session across one morning.
- Exploring Engagement will provide an opportunity to find out why engagement is so important for major funders, explore approaches to quality engagement and discover opportunities for public engagement at Imperial and beyond.
- Planning and Evaluating Engagement covers the key steps to take in developing a public engagement activity, including how to assess what is effective and the areas that may need fine-tuning. You will discover the value of evaluation, and how it can be enjoyable for you and your public participants.
Masterclass 3: Communication in Engagement
This session will enable you to build on your learnings from the core masterclasses and put your ideas into practice. This skills-focused workshop will look at the key to effective communication, presentation and messaging, relevant across engagement formats, and will help you to tailor engagement to different audiences or contexts. The session will be highly interactive with plenty of opportunity to practice techniques and ideas.
Masterclass 4: Engagement Ideas
If you would like to develop your ideas for a public engagement event or activity, come along to our masterclass and get inspired! This session will involve creative approaches, problem-solving and ideas generation to help participants develop public engagement activities or events with feedback and ideas from other members of the group.
Masterclass 5: Engagement with Controversial Issues
Within this masterclass we will share experiences of communicating with the public around controversial, complex or emotive areas of research. We will develop practical tips for engaging with a range of perspectives in relation to controversial issues, and discuss how to engage the public with the research process and scientific evidence.
Masterclass 6: Engagement, Funding and Impact
Engagement with the public is an important route through which research can influence wider society, leading to many potential impacts and applications. This session will discuss how engagement can be a pathway to impact, including the funding and policy landscape, and how to plan for effective engagement with research. This masterclass is particularly relevant for anyone involved in writing funding applications or pathways to impact statements.
Masterclass 7: Digital Engagement
Engaging online audiences has enormous potential for impactful two-way engagement. Not only can it complement face-to-face events, it can also reach new audiences on a global scale who might not otherwise have the chance to explore Imperial’s research. Join us to:
- Discover a wide range of online tools and platforms suitable for public engagement and be inspired by real examples.
- Discuss the merits and limitations of digital engagement and gain awareness of key considerations
- Explore how you can evaluate digital engagement and what success looks like.
- Build confidence and motivation to engage online audiences with practical tips.
You should complete the core masterclasses (sessions 1 and 2) before joining the optional masterclasses (sessions 3-6). If you have participated in some engagement training already (e.g. external training, Imperial Festival or Lates briefing session, Engagement Academy) you could start on session 2.
The six masterclasses will be held once per term in the Autumn, Spring and Summer. We will hold sessions 1 to 3 on one day allowing you to complete them all together.
Our masterclasses are free but space is limited, please sign up to each masterclass individually.