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Current Postgraduate Students

 

P2P Presentations

We piloted peer-to-peer presentations in 2016-17.  Student feedback told us these were a great learning experience and should be embedded into the first year PhD student experience. 

What

A non-intimidating, hands-on opportunity for first year postgraduate students to present their research to a mixed-RIG group of scientists who are also at the same stage in their studies.

  • Students should give an overview of their research area and project aims for a non-specialist audience.
  • Each presenter has a 15-minute slot  (10 for the talk, 5 for questions).
  • The talks for these sessions will vary greatly in content because students presenting in December are unlikely to have a great deal of results and even those presenting in April will often not have a lot of their science working. The point is not to impress peers with your results (although if you have them, you will of course) but to learn.
  • Chairpersons are volunteers: a Chairperson will not present during the session that they chair, i.e. December Chairs will present in April and vice versa.
  • There is a 'Best Talk' prize for each group, voted for by the participants and presented by the Head of Department or Deputy at the graduate student & postdoc Christmas/Easter networking events.
  • P2P presentations are generally over lunch time and lunch is included where possible.

Peer to Peer presentations winners 2016/2017. Visit the Moodle 'Peer-to-peer Presentations: Examples' folder to see their presentations.

Why

To improve your presentation skills, both by having actual practice, and also by receiving feedback from those who hear you speak and seeing other styles of presenting that you may wish to adopt yourself. 

When

P2P presentation weeks are outside undergraduate term time: this year they are scheduled broadly as follows:

  • w/c Monday 4th and 11th December 2017
  • w/c Monday 16th and 23rd April 2018

How

  • The scheme is compulsory for all first-year PhD students, who are divided into five groups of 10-15 each.
  • Each group is taken from first-year Michaelmas and Lent Term postgraduate students (Easter Term student are invited to join the December presentation groups for the following academic year).
  • Groups are deliberately taken from all RIGs to help students learn to present to a mixed audience.
  • MPhil students are invited to join and are distributed among the groups according to RIG (to get the best mixture possible).
  • About three weeks before they begin, students are sent a link to a Doodle poll containing all the dates and times for the presentations.  Anybody who is restricted to certain days and times will need to fill this out; those with no restrictions need not fill out the poll and will simply be assigned a date/time to take part.

December or April?

Students will end up in groups of around 10-15 people: around half of each group will be asked to present in December and the other half in April, often in a different group.  However, you will need to plan to attend both the December and April sessions, presenting in one of them and being part of the audience in the other (i.e. it is not required that everybody presents in both December and April, just the one you are allocated.  You can also swap with somebody else in your group if that works out better for two of you).

Feedback

  • Each member of the audience fills in a feedback sheet during each talk, which is given to the presenter at the end.
  • Each participant will have a sheet upon which they score various aspects of each talk.  The scores will then form the basis for their decision of which was the best presentation and which one they vote for as the prize-winner.
  • Feedback on the sessions will be requested from all participants, in order to ensure that the most effective model is being used for this activity. 

Organising Committee

In 2016-17, we needed an organising Committee to set up these sessions for the first time.  They were, with thanks: Bee Fonseka (PhD student, Stuart Clarke Group), Yuchen Hu (MPhil student, Elliott Group) and Tianheng Zhao (PhD student, Vignolini Group) who all contributed their excellent ideas and assistance in the organisation of this now established activity in the First Year Training Calendar.  Session Chairs in all rounds will be convened post-event to discuss feedback and further changes but if you have ideas as to how to run these sessions better in future, please email Deborah Longbottom.

Session Chairs

In December, we welcomed in Akhila Denduluri (Knowles), Didi Rinkel (Grey), Katarina Pisani (Vendruscolo), Esther Moore (Reisner), Klara Kulenkampff (Klenerman) and Daniel Sharpe (Wales).  Many thanks to all of them for doing such a great job of making these sessions work so well.  If you would like to act as session Chair in the April 2018 P2P Presentation sessions, please email Deborah Longbottom.

Best Presenters

Although there were winners voted by each group as having done the very best presentations, the voting was distributed each time between many presenters, indicating the very high standard of the presentations being given by our first year cohort.  Nevertheless, there were winners in each group and they were:

December 2017:

Henry Blackwell (Gaunt), Kimberley Callaghan (Dobson), Maarten Hardenberg (Vendruscolo), Melanie Miller (Reisner), Esther Moore (Reisner) and Taylor Uekhert (Reisner).

March/April 2017:

Bethan Connolly (Wheatley), Nils Floden (Gaunt), William Golding (Phipps), Sanesh Mistry (Gaunt), Simon Ramirez-Hinestrosa (Frenkel) and William Whitehurst (Gaunt).

Congratulations everybody and many thanks to all participants for the useful feedback on the sessions.