NSCI 532

Survival Skills and Ethics for Emerging Scientists

Survival Skills and Ethics for Emerging Scientists   
2 Credits
Director:  Karen Gale
     

 I.  Presentation and Communication Skills

Teaching                                                                                                                 3 sessions 

Scholarship must be accurate, whether it is interesting or not.  But teaching must be interesting, even if it is not 100 percent accurate.“ Highet, 1950The Art of Teaching 

* Why teach?  * Teaching whom? Teaching what?  *  Preparing lectures; preparing a course  * Presentation styles: what works and what doesn't  * Promoting discussion  * Optimizing learning  * Problems and challenges  * Ethics of teacher-student relationships  * Visual aids; demonstrations; hands on activities  * Testing, evaluating and grading  * Evaluating you teaching. 

STUDENTS ARE TO PREPARE A 3-MIN INTRODUCTION TO A TALK BY FEB 7

  • Oral communication: Presenting research seminars       2 sessions 

                         Special guest on Feb 7 and Mar 7: Roy Underhill (TV personality) 
                         Speaking well is important; you are what you speak 
 * Why give talks?  * Structure of talk  * How should you prepare? Where to begin?  * Audio and visual aids and their responsible use  * Delivery style and nonverbal communication  * Gender differences  * Answering questions   
* Getting evaluations  * Ethical issues; honesty. 
      STUDENTS ARE TO BRING IN A POSTER (BORROWED IS OKAY) FOR NEXT SESSION.

  • Poster Presentations                        one session                          

* Poster vs. oral presentation: advantages & disadvantages  * Components  * The importance of style and appearance  * Responsible conduct for abstracts and posters  * How to simplify the writing  component  * Getting feedback. 
              STUDENTS ARE TO BRING IN EXAMPLE OF ESPECIALLY POOR SCIENTIFIC WRITING AND POOR TITLES FROM ARTICLES IN THE LITERATURE FOR  NEXT SESSION.

  • Publishing research findings: Writing a scientific paper      Two sessions 

  "The goal of scientific research is publication . . . A scientific experiment, no matter how spectacular the results, is not completed until it is published"  R. A. Day, 1994, How to Write and Publish a Scientific Paper 
 * Why write?  * Research vs. writing  * When do you start writing a paper?  * The structure of a scientific paper  * Who should be an author?  * Responsible conduct in writing; ethical standards  * 20 steps of a research article  * Is scientific English a foreign language?  * Preparing accurate and effective tables and figures  * What reviewers look for  * Confidentiality of the review process  * How is credit assigned?        

Grantsmanship I: How to get started writing your own proposal                                                   Two sessions 
                * Sources and types of funding  * Types of proposals  * Necessary ingredients in an application  * Fatal flaws and common problems  * How to get help; how to be competitive  * Budgets, resources, collaborators  
* Who reviews your application? What are they looking for?  * How to read and respond to critiques without getting depressed  * Responsible conduct, confidentiality and conflicts of interest. 
  (Students are to begin writing their own mini-grant applications.) 
  STUDENTS MINI-GRANTS ARE DUE : please bring in FOUR copies without your name on them (use the last 4 digits of your soc sec # as i.d.)
       STUDENT GRANT CRITIQUES ARE DUE 2 weeks later.

 Grantsmanship II: Mock Study section for grant reviewing (one session)   
 Obtaining funding is a necessary part of doing science; perseverance spells success. 
* How to get help; how to be competitive  * Budgets, resources, collaborators  
* Who reviews your application? What are they looking for?  * How to read and respond to critiques without getting depressed  * Responsible conduct, confidentiality and conflicts of interest. 

 

II.   Career Development

Mentorship                                                Two sessions                   
According to Homer, when Odysseus began his ten year journey, he entrusted the education of his son, Telemachus, to the care of his loyal friend, Mentor. 
 * Who is a mentor?  * Is an advisor a mentor?  * How do you find and choose mentors?  * Why is mentoring important?  * How do mentors foster creativity, independence, ethical conduct and self-reliance?  * How can mentors ensure optimal career development?  * How can a toxic mentoring relationship be avoided?  * Can students also be mentors?  * What are the responsibilities of the trainee to the mentor?  * What happens when you have a conflict with your mentor?  * How do gender, ethnicity, and cultural differences influence the mentor-mentee relationship?  * Are you mentor-dependent or mentor-resistant?  * Who wns the data?

Gender and Ethnicity                                                                  one session 
 . . . the under-representation of women and people of color (in science) is a reflection of inequities in education, training and career advancement.“ S. J. Bird, 1994, Mentoring, Ethics, and Professional Responsibility 
 * Why is diversity important?  * What obstacles to career development and advancement do women and under-represented groups face?  * How can we begin to remove these obstacles?  * How to cope with sticky floors and glass ceilings?  * How can we recognize different communication styles? How can we overcome the barriers they create?  * How can we incorporate multicultural perspectives into our scholarly endeavors?

Career paths, Professional choices                               one session 
Students will have the opportunity to, listen to and meet with, a variety of academic and non-academic professionals from non-university institutions.  For each session, 3 or 4 invited guests will be part of a panel and will also meet in small groups with the students. 
 * After graduate school, what?  * What career opportunities are out there?  
* What are their job descriptions?  * What novel opportunities may develop in the future?  * What personal and professional factors determine the choice of a career path?  * How do I know what is best for me?  * Is the University the only place to teach?  *  How can a student best prepare for multiple options?  * What do dual-career scientist couples face?  * What is the influence of gender on career paths?  * Can family be balanced better with certain types of careers?  * What are obstacle to be prepared for?