Full course description
A conference is a platform for scholars or professionals to meet and share ideas, to present new discoveries and to connect to fellow academics. At a conference papers and research posters are presented, workshops are offered for skill development, and seminars are held to familiarise the scientific community with current academic topics and new developments. As an academic you visit a conference to present your own work, see others’ work and to start possible collaborations.
This skills training focuses on the preparation and planning of a conference. Students will write an extensive plan for the annual UCM Liberal Arts and Sciences conference to be held in the third period of this semester. Students will do the following in order to develop the conference plan and blueprint:
- Discuss the shared assumptions, values and goals of Liberal Arts and Sciences and an open curriculum and turn that into a subtheme for the conference.
- Discuss and compare individual interests within the group to find similarities and differences and turn that into illustrative examples of Liberal Arts and Sciences that can be used for workshops and informative sessions at the conference.
- Conduct an analysis of the target audience for the conference.
- Discuss instructional design (teaching and learning) in terms of knowledge, skills and attitudes and use that to work out lesson plans for the conference for workshops and informative sessions.
Note that this skills training is not only about presentation and organisation skills. It also aims at giving students the opportunity to learn more about education and teaching and instructional design.
The skills training relies heavily on students’ personal experiences from having been in a liberal arts and sciences program for several semesters and on being able to make that explicit to others. On the one hand, this will be used while preparing the conference and to inform first semester UCM students. On the other hand, participating students will benefit from the skills training and its follow-ups by fostering a preparation for e.g. Capstone and master’s applications for which a profound understanding and expression of a student’s academic interest will be necessary.
The skills training puts a strong emphasis on instructional design. Individual contributions to the conference are considered to be educational units and approached as such. For participating students, this will be an opportunity to gain experience with developing and designing intended learning objectives and then implementing teaching and learning activities for a target group and audience. Students will inform themselves on different approaches to teaching and apply them to -preparing lesson plans for the informative sessions, workshops and plenary sessions offered at the conference.
A wide variety of individual interests in the Sciences, Social Sciences and Humanities is welcomed in order to offer a diverse conference. This skills training fosters an interdisciplinary approach among the participating students.
- To train students in skills required for preparing an academic conference.
- To give students the opportunity to position their interest within a field of their choice and academic fields in general and express that by means of activities at a conference such as lectures and workshops.
- To train students in reviewing a topic in their field of interest and turn that into an informative session and workshop for the conference.
- To train students to work together and set up a plan for a conference.
- To train students in using a framework for instructional design and apply its principles to their individual contributions to the conference.
- To train students in writing lesson plans for their individual contributions to the conference and the plenary sessions that will be offered.
- To train students in working together on preparing a conference.
NB: Students who register for SKI3050 Preparing Conference must also take PRO3006 Conference. It is not possible to take either of these modules separately due to the specific nature of this skills training and the project.
Students should be at least in their fourth semester at UCM, i.e. it is necessary that students have passed several courses, skills trainings and projects on a 2000 level and/or a 3000 level in Humanities, Sciences and/or Social Sciences. This is necessary, since students will base their individual contribution to the conference on their UCM curriculum.