Friday, 21 October 2011

Speakeasy and book launch

Dear all,
SATURDAY 12th NOVEMBER 2011 at 10am-5pm
Rooms G37 and G26, Senate House
Do you get the jitters every time you give a seminar paper? Do you find that you are unable to project your voice, speak too fast and don’t connect with the audience? Or worse, are people falling asleep in your lectures? Clear, effective and professional communication skills are absolutely essential to any aspiring academic. While doctoral students are taught essential research skills, less emphasis is placed on learning how to communicate their research effectively either in the lecture hall or in the seminar room. Speakeasy, a public-speaking training organisation, is a one-day workshop on the art of public speaking for young historians. Organised by an academic and a professional actor, the Speakeasy workshop is specifically designed for historians at the start of their career. Drawing on professional acting skills and techniques, our one-day course addresses the following issues:
· How to be an effective communicator in the lecture theatre, the seminar room or in the conference hall.
· How to get your message across, keep your audience engaged and actually enjoy the experience.
· Voice projection, posture, body language and how to calm your nerves
· Different modes of communication: how to lead seminars, chair conferences and conduct a Q&A.
· Techniques for presenting, how to deliver complex ideas and personalise your style of delivery.
· Methods of communication: how to use PowerPoint, present a poster and ‘how to think on your academic feet’.

This course is available to all registered PhD, Mphil students and early career historians. Due to the interactive nature of the workshop, numbers must be limited to 25.

Note on the workshop leaders:
Liza Filby is a historian based at King’s College, London. She was formerly Chair of the History Lab, the Institute of Historical Research’s national postgraduate network and editor of Vitae’s GradBritain. She has four years experience in running peer-based training workshops for PhD students.
Steven Clarke is a professional actor who trained at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. He has a number of distinguished roles under his belt and is currently appearing in a Broadway production of a John Osborne play in New York. Steven has led training sessions on public speaking for both private and public sector organisations.

Reviews of previous Speakeasy workshops in London:
‘A really good day – glad I came all the way from Birmingham’
‘A very, very good day – far exceeded expectations in terms of how useful it has been – thank you!’
‘Great! Very passionate people, very useful!’
‘The session made me realise the importance of public speaking as a tool of professional development and career advancement’
‘[my] confidence grew as the day wore on. Generally really useful – and fun too!’
For a review of one workshop by History Lab organiser Amelia Nel go to:
Course requirements: All attendees are required to bring along with them a printed copy of 150 words on/about their research- this could be part of a chapter, paper etc. It is perhaps best not to bring part of your original PhD research proposal. Please also make sure that you wear loose comfortable clothing; don’t be scared by this, no crazy stunts involved!

Places are limited on this course so if you would like to attend please email ASAP. The cost to attend the workshop is £40 which includes lunch, refreshments and a course pack.
History Lab member publishes thesis
Dr. Samantha Bird completed her PhD back at the end of 2009 and have now had her thesis published. Her story has been one of success going from student to published author. Her book has now been published and there is an event to launch it this Friday, 21 October at the Bishopsgate Institute. Samantha's work is on Stepney borough, in the East End of London, from the outbreak of the First World War through to the Festival of Britain. Bishopsgate is an ideal place to launch the book! It would be great to have a few members coming over to show support. Samantha will be speaking, alongside her supervisor Professor Denis Judd, and also Peter Stone who recently reviewed her book.

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