Writing groups ONLINE

 

Follow-up to the the basic workshop Scientific Writing & Publishing

Writing groups provide an opportunity to develop scientific writing expertise, and act as a supporting framework helping participants achieve their writing goals.

Writing groups meet monthly over a period of 6–12 months. Each session is highly structured in order to provide maximum benefits to the participants and contains the following elements:

  1. Goal setting & evaluation. Reflection about the past month and setting goals for the next month. Reflective freewriting and conversation with a peer.
  2. Q&A session and discussion of relevant topics.
  3. Group work. In-depth discussions, peer feedback on participants’ texts, practicing with provided exercises, focused work on a writing project. Participants are divided in smaller groups according to their preferred activity.

 
Writing groups are most useful in the first and last phase of the PhD:

I. “Kickstart your PhD” writing group helps the beginning PhD students develop their scientific writing skills, get organized and build collegial and collaborative relationships with their peers. Participants learn to use writing as a support for their scientific thinking, start to consistently document their research activities and develop productive routines. At the end, participants appear as confident writers ready to tackle independent writing projects.

II. “Finish your PhD” writing group functions as a success team and accountability group, helping participants juggle multiple projects and responsibilities, overcome challenges and work consistently towards their writing goals. This format provides a framework for participants to prioritize and schedule their writing and remaining experimental work, reflect upon their progress, plan next steps, ask for advice and feedback, and get inspired and motivated through their involvement with struggles and successes of their peers.

Participant feedback

I learned to think about a text in a more structured way — writing & revising now seems less overwhelming.

The monthly goal-setting was very useful. It helped me to stay on track with my thesis.

I really like this format because it connects PhD students and makes them more aware of each other’s work.