CB 399: Science Presentation as a Performing Art

Science Presentation as a Performing Art

Effective communication of scientific knowledge is an essential component of any career in the sciences. While data and figures are often the focus of scientific presentations, the “Science Presentations as a Performing Art” nanocourse is specifically targeted towards improving students' oral communication skills. The first day of the course is a three hour introductory lecture and workshop that will focus on connecting with one's audience in the context of scientific communication. Drawing from her background in theater performance, Ms. Bailey will teach techniques that can be easily implemented to improve the quality and effectiveness of oral presentations, ranging from body language and movement to vocal clarity and breathing. Dr. Van Vactor will contribute his scientific and teaching expertise to illustrate how these techniques can be used to highlight scientific content. He will specifically address how to identify and frame the purpose and structure of a presentation and how to thoughtfully answer questions at the end of presentations. Due to the highly interactive and personalized nature of this nanocourse, enrollment is capped at 24 students. Graduate students have enrollment priority.

Class Assignment: During the second session of the course, enrolled students will give a brief presentation in a small group setting on any research topic that the student is interested in. Presentations are to be no longer than 5 minutes and with no more than 2 power point slides or other visual aids. All students will receive personalized feedback and one-on-one coaching from Ms. Bailey. Students will then have 30 minutes to revise and incorporate feedback into their presentations before presenting again to faculty instructors.
Slides or an outline of student presentations will be due before the start of the first session.

Course Instructors: Erika Bailey, Head of Voice and Speech, American Repertory Theater
Course Director: Davie Van Vactor, Professor of Cell Biology
Curriculum Fellow: Ryan Lee, CF for Cancer Biology

Session Dates and Times
First session: November 9, 2018: 9:00am - 12:00pm
First session Location: Longwood Quad, exact location shared with registered participants only
Second session: November 14, 2018: 9:00am - 12:30pm
Second session Location: Longwood Quad, exact location shared with registered participants only

For any questions or additional information, please contact ryan_lee@hms.harvard.edu

Sponsored by the Landry Cancer Biology Consortium and the Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Dynamics T32.