PANEL & ROUNDTABLE: Building Communication Competencies for STEM Graduate Students (40 mins)
In this panel/roundtable discussion, we will discuss how to best help graduate students build communication competencies, leveraging current research from theories of process, situated learning, transfer, and metacognition to improve those competencies through communication-building activities in graduate classes, professional development activities, and programming across Mason’s campus. The panel will also share recent efforts in communication professional development at Mason, including a Professional Development Workshop offered in spring 2020 for graduate students. Funded by a Curriculum Impact Grant, the panelists have created an innovative semester-long workshop series designed to help STEM graduate students build skills in oral and written communication, though findings in this panel will apply these lessons to all graduate students. Topics and activities in the workshop included communicating across a range of genres and contexts, including producing white papers, TED-style talks, and communications in other situations. We will share early outcomes of the workshop series and lessons learned. We will also solicit discussion from the audience members, who will be asked to identify their most pressing needs for supporting graduate students.