Evaluation of two workshops for graduate students on communicating research in engineering and science

Michael Alley, Leslie Srajek, Amy Wagoner Johnson, Michelle Stickler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Graduate students face imposing hurdles in communicating their research. Unfortunately, many institutions do not have the resources to offer semester-long courses on presenting and documenting research. This paper presents the evaluation and subsequent improvement of two graduate student workshops on communicating research in engineering and science. These two workshops-one on research presentations and the other on research writing-were based on highly successful workshops developed for professional researchers. Over four years, we evaluated these two workshops in twenty offerings at five institutions: The Pennsylvania State University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Oslo, the University of Texas at Austin, and Virginia Tech. Program evaluations found more than 95% of participating students strongly agreed or agreed that the workshops were valuable experiences. We also found that the workshops were more effective when accompanied by pre-workshop assignments in which the students attempted to communicate a portion of their research, and by follow-up sessions in which the students critiqued each others' research communications. Moreover, the teachings of the workshops were better received when recruitment for the workshops occurred through the advising faculty members and when those faculty members were made aware beforehand of the workshop's approaches to gray-area stylistic issues, such as whether to use the first person in research documents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication37th ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE
PagesS4G8-S4G13
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2007
Event37th ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE - Milwaukee, WI, United States
Duration: Oct 10 2007Oct 13 2007

Publication series

NameProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE
ISSN (Print)1539-4565

Other

Other37th ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE
CountryUnited States
CityMilwaukee, WI
Period10/10/0710/13/07

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications

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    Alley, M., Srajek, L., Johnson, A. W., & Stickler, M. (2007). Evaluation of two workshops for graduate students on communicating research in engineering and science. In 37th ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE (pp. S4G8-S4G13). [4417952] (Proceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE). https://doi.org/10.1109/FIE.2007.4417952