School on Scientific Writing and Reading

September 5-6, 2016
Versione stampabile

Effective reading and writing are key factors shaping an academic’s career. No matter how successful laboratory or field research might be, unless it is written up in a form that others can understand and appreciate, its impact  – in academia and beyond – is likely to be limited.

For Master’s or doctoral students, integrating their own research with their reading of the academic literature is vital in order to write effective reports, research articles and a successful thesis. Over the two days, we will investigate ways to make academic reading more efficient and make academic writing flow more readily resulting in text that has greater power, precision and influence. We will also consider what it takes to be published successfully.

Dr Trevor Day is a professional writer with one foot in the academic world and the other in the commercial world. In his career he has written more than forty books, seventy academic articles, many articles for the international press, plus communications for UK research councils and science activity centres. He now specialises in research and development in academic writing, and especially in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) disciplines. He is author of the writing guide Success in Academic Writing (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) and heads a programme for the UK’s Royal Literary Fund, training professional writers to lead writing activities with students and staff in universities. He runs writing-related courses for several leading UK universities, including Bath, Brunel and Exeter.
Trevor Day website

Program

Venue: room A203, Povo 1 building, 9:30 am - 5:00 pm

Day 1. Morning. The challenges and opportunities of writing for publication

Your academic success depends on carrying out high-quality research. But that is just the first step. Your findings and ideas need to be read by the right people in the right places. You need to translate your work into communications that have impact. This practical, half-day session is about what it takes to turn your research into published communications that have power and precision and influence others. Focusing on peer-reviewed journal papers, it takes you through the process, from planning, writing and ‘packaging’ your work, to effective publishing strategies.

By the end of the session, participants should be better able to:

  • choose a journal for publication, matched to their interests and aspirations
  • write a research paper in an appropriate style, well matched to journal, type of article, purpose and audience
  • begin to manage the writing process productively
  • review their own work, and that of others, and give targeted appropriate feedback
  • engage with the publication process to meet publisher’s expectations
  • handle feedback constructively

Preparation:
Students are encouraged to think of an idea for a paper based on their research and have considered a target journal they might publish it in.

Day 1. Afternoon. Reading for academic success

Reading, along with writing, is one of the most time-intensive aspects of academic research. Paying attention to the way you read can reap great benefits and save you time. By being a better critical reader you also become a better academic writer.

This workshop investigates strategies to enhance reading, including how to read strategically and more selectively, and how to carry out efficient in-depth reading. There are practical exercises, working singly and in pairs, plus whole group discussion and opportunities for questions and answers.

By the end of the session, participants should be better able to:

  • explain the nature of reading for academic writing
  • apply their understanding of the reading process to make their academic reading more flexible and efficient
  • more swiftly judge the value of what they read
  • begin applying strategies and techniques to enhance their academic reading and increase their productivity

Preparation:
Students are encouraged to bring with them a paper copy of a journal article they have not yet read thoroughly for their academic research.

Day 2. Morning. Writing your Master’s thesis

Venue: entrance open apace, Povo 1 building, 9:30 am - 5:00 pm

In this half-day session participants consider how to write their Master’s thesis to maximize their chances of success. The session investigates how to manage thesis-writing so as to make better use of time. It includes practical tips on how to organise writing and enhance writing style to match the readership. There are practical exercises, working singly and in pairs, plus group discussion and opportunities for questions and answers.

By the end of the session, participants should be better able to:

  • nurture the planning, writing and editing of their thesis
  • devise an effective structure for their thesis
  • write the literature review section(s)
  • compose their thesis as a coherent argument
  • project manage the writing and completion of their thesis

Preparation:
Students are encouraged to bring with them any plans for the structure of their thesis.

Day 2. Afternoon. Writing your doctoral thesis

In this half-day session participants consider the function of a thesis and how they can write theirs to maximize their chances of success. The session investigates how to manage thesis-writing so as to make better use of the time, resources and technology available. It includes practical tips on how to organise writing and enhance writing style to match purpose and the core readership. There are practical exercises, working singly and in pairs, plus group discussion and opportunities for questions and answers.

By the end of the session participants should be better able to:

  • explain the nature of a thesis
  • apply their understanding of the writing process to better overcome blocks to writing
  • use strategies such as SMART and IPACE to plan their thesis and their thesis writing
  • begin to apply such strategies to their thesis
  • practise different approaches to thesis-writing
  • check that they are using a wide range of technologies to make their thesis-writing more efficient

Preparation:
Students are encouraged to bring with them any plans for the structure of their thesis

Registration

To participate to the School on Scientific Writing and Reading it is required to fill an online form available at the link: http://webapps.unitn.it/form/it/Web/Home/summerschool, one for Master students and one for PHD students.

At the achievements of 25 Master students and 25 PHD students, the form will be desabled.

Registration deadline: September 4, 2016 (10:59 PM) - The registrations are closed.

Organizing Committee

Alberto Quaranta (Chairman)

Felicity Hope

Michela Monselesan (Secretariat)