At some point, all of us are faced with the challenge of talking about our research in public. Whether we're speaking to our colleagues, an audience at a professional conference or even our family and friends, it can be a struggle to get across the results of months (or years!) of work in only a few minutes.
In this seminar, we'll talk about ways to improve scientific or professional communication. More importantly, students will have the chance to experiment with several different presentation methods and see what method works best for them. By the end of the semester, I hope that we'll be better equipped to discuss our research with both experts and non-specialists. I also expect that students will have put together a set of visual aids that they'll be able to use later in conference presentations, job interviews or public outreach.
As a 'pre-work' assignment, I've attached an article on scientific presentations published by the journal Groundwater in the mid 1980s. The tone of the article is pretty aggressive but it makes several good points about problems that I often see at professional conferences. I'll ask each of you to read this (very short) article before tomorrow's class; it should help you get a sense for some of the themes we'll discuss over the next few months.