“I would definitely recommend this workshop to my colleagues!”

IZKF Graduate School, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, March 2018

“This workshop was 200% useful and helpful for me.”

International Max Planck Research School in Developmental Biology, Tübingen, February 2018

“The workshop was really helpful for me. I gained a good insight into scientific writing and now I know how to practise.”

IZKF Graduate School, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, March 2018

“The sessions on commas and grammar in the context of a report/paper were especially useful.”

International Max Planck Research School in Developmental Biology, Tübingen, February 2018

“The content was delivered vividly and clearly.”

IZKF Graduate School, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, March 2018

“The tutor was engaging and made the entire workshop very interesting and fun. I found it both enjoyable and very useful.”

International Max Planck Research School in Developmental Biology, Tübingen, February 2018

“As it was directly related to our field, I think I can really improve my writing skills.”

GK1660 “Adaptive Immunity”, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, November 2017

“It was great that time was allowed for individual questions and discussion.”

GK1660 “Adaptive Immunity”, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, November 2017

“A great course! I did not expect a short course to have so much impact.”

International Max Planck Research School in Molecular Physiology, Dortmund, October 2017

“I’m now looking forward to the writing process.”

GK1660 “Adaptive Immunity”, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, November 2017

“I now feel more confident with writing a paper.”

GRK 2162 “Neurodevelopment and vulnerability of the central nervous system”, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, October 2017

“The workshop was a great help. Particularly as I now know how to work on improving my writing skills by myself.”

GRK 2162 “Neurodevelopment and vulnerability of the central nervous system”, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, October 2017

“I really enjoyed the atmosphere during the workshop.”

GRK 2162 “Neurodevelopment and vulnerability of the central nervous system”, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, October 2017

“It’s a huge help to have examples of commonly used words and lists of alternatives.”

IZKF Graduate School, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, March 2018

“The workshop surpassed my expectations.”

GRK 2162 “Neurodevelopment and vulnerability of the central nervous system”, Friedrich-Alexander University, Erlangen, October 2017

“Every graduate student should attend this course”

Writing a thesis proposal workshop for the International Max Planck Research School in Developmental Biology, Tübingen, February 2017

Services:
Academic
Writing
Training

Academic careers now depend on good publication records in international journals. To successfully publish in English, researchers must acquire proficiency in the academic English used by their disciplinary community and familiarise themselves with the conventions of their target genre. BETA offers specialist training to help participants through this process, equipping them with the tools they need to improve their academic English writing skills.

Overview
BETA offers training in academic English writing that is tailored to participants needs in terms of discipline and target genre. This training is delivered in the form of short intensive in-house workshops, demonstrating key principles and providing guided practice, discussion opportunities and detailed individual feedback on practical writing assignments.
Target group
Post-graduate students, post-doctoral students and faculty members of the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering. Training can be provided for both individuals and small groups (max. 12) from a post-graduate programme, research group or university department.
Course content

Each course consists of two essential components, one focusing on language use and the other on structuring. The precise content will vary according to individual requirements, but a typical example is shown below.

Course content for a workshop for PhD molecular physiology students in writing research articles for publication

Language component:

  • General guiding principles
  • Formality: the vocabulary shift
  • Precision: subtle differences in meaning
  • Objectivity: nominalisations, pronouns and the passive
  • Cohesion: linking words and this + summary word
  • Hedging: using modals to express your stance
  • Punctuation and Grammar: the use of the comma, overview of the tenses

Structural component:

  • The Abstract: Drawing your reader in
  • The Introduction: Claiming relevance, reviewing the literature and establishing a niche
  • The Methods and Results sections: detailing your experiments and presenting your findings
  • The Discussion: Communicating your key message, putting results in context and recommending future research
Method

Only authentic materials from the relevant discipline and target genre are used. Short practical exercises illustrate the use of each language point and provide participants with plenty of opportunities to apply the knowledge they have gained in the context of their own discipline.

The structural component is based on a genre analysis approach, with participants learning to analyse the different ‘moves’ that make up each section, to identify key phrases associated with each move and to critically evaluate the way in which information is presented.

Participants have the opportunity to draft their own sections and receive detailed individual feedback on their writing. Small groups foster a relaxed atmosphere, which encourages discussion and a high degree of interaction.

Course Format/Duration

Workshops typically consist of ten 90-minute units, although this can be modified according to individual requirements. Whilst the format is flexible, two options have proved popular:

Standard:
The standard format consists of two 90-minute units per day over five days (e.g. Monday to Friday, 09:00-12:15). This provides the maximum opportunity for writing practice with students receiving writing assignments to complete in the afternoons in order to practise and consolidate what they have learned in the morning.

Intensive:
This format comprises two full days (e.g. 09:00-16:30) and one half day (e.g. 09:00-12:15). This very intensive option may be appropriate for those who have limited time available. It should be noted that this option means that opportunities for individual writing assignments are more limited.

Course fees
Course fees vary according to the duration of the course and the number of participants involved. Please contact Deborah or send Deborah an enquiry for an individual quote.
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