Building communication skills in PhD programs


#1

The art of communication is essential to the pursuit of science. As a PhD scholar in the making, I feel that enhancing how one delivers science is of utmost importance, be it any form of communication. This post could serve as a platform for people who feel similarly to share their views, and discuss ways to keep the science we do relevant to the general public as well. I firmly believe the best time to do that is in the formative years of one’s academic career. Ideas?


#2

I agree - effective communication skills are highly important for doing science, beginning with presenting our research to colleagues, committees and conferences, writing papers, and reaching up to discussing our science with the lay public who actually provide the resources that allow us to carry out our research. A lot of it is usually expected to be learned ‘on the job’ - however, there are several new resources/courses that are coming up now to help PhD scholars learn communication skills in a directed manner. The Welcome-DBT science communication workshop jumps into mind - does anyone know of any others?


#3

Definitely! :slightly_smiling_face:
In addition to the Welcome-DBT science communication workshop, one may look into being a volunteer for iBiology

Another excellent platform is the FameLab-Cheltenham festival. It is one of a kind in that urges early career scientists to introduce difficult scientific concepts in an innovative manner to a live, non-science audience.

Options are galore!


#4

Here is one more opportunity for finding new and exciting ways of presenting your research - The Euraxes Science Slam India competition. To enter, you send a short video describing your research. Finalists get to participate in a short science communication workshop and the winner receives a round trip to Europe to visit EU research insitutions.


#5

One more opportunity for PhD scholars or post-doctoral fellows to hone their writing skills - the DST AWSAR scheme - http://dst.gov.in/republic-day-2018 . Not a lot of details are available yet, but the scheme is set up to award >100 young researchers who write about their science for a general audience.