Academic Practice Activities
The aim of the Max Weber Academic Practice (AP) activities is to foster the on-going professional development of Fellows through training for reflective practice - including research practices such as ethics issues - and engaging in peer review and interaction. The training component of the MW Programme consists in three interlocking modules designed to address key areas of academic practice:
- Publishing and Presenting Research;
- Preparation for the Job Market and Career Development.
These training activities draw on the expertise of the FIESOLE Group, a network of applied linguists and educationalists from the EUI and other leading European institutions involved in training for mobility and career advancement. The training is developed through a series of activities listed and explained below:
The training is developed through a series of activities listed and explained below:
The cornerstone of the interlocking modules are the Academic Practice Workshops. These Workshops are designed to enhance Fellows’ knowledge and skills in key areas of academic practice, from publishing strategies and research dissemination, to research ethics and professional leadership, to effective teaching and curriculum development in the context of today’s multicultural global academia. They are offered by experts from the EUI and its sister institutions and can also be convened directly by the Academic Practice Groups on topics related to academic practice of particular interest. The workshops are usually held on Wednesday mornings and are open to all Fellows; they are complemented by disciplinary Writers’ Groups (co-organised with the Fellows themselves; see below), the Teaching Practice Weeks (reserved for those Fellows who opt to obtain the Max Weber Teaching Certificate), and one-on-one tutorials and coaching.
The Academic Practice Groups (APGs) complement the Practice Workshops. They are organised by the four discipline groups (ECO Fellows, HEC Fellows, LAW Fellows and SPS Fellows) and allow for a more in-depth exchange of ideas and experiences. They are also the locus of the self-organized Writers' Groups (WG), described below under Academic Communication Skills. The APGs include follow up sessions on the workshops dealing with the ethics of research, publishing strategies, applying for grants, and writing a book proposal. Additionally, they provide the forum for mock interviews and mock job talks (both of which are organised by the Programme). Each APG arranges its own schedule, addressing additional topics to those mentioned above. They generally meet on Wednesdays at 9.15 AM.
The working language of the programme is English, and a series of activities is offered by the in-house (EUI) members of the FIESOLE Group under the umbrella Academic Communication Skills to meet the varied needs of the Max Weber Fellows. These activities are offered on an on-going basis throughout the year and are as follows:
1. Writers’ Groups (WG)
An integral part of the Writing for Publication component of the programme, the Writers’ Groups provide an effective setting for giving and obtaining peer feedback on the readability and effectiveness of texts before submitting them for publication, thus supporting the publishing process and helping to boost output. Groups (normally 4-5 Fellows per group) are self-organized on a disciplinary basis according to the writing aims of the Fellows over the year (publication of articles in peer-reviewed journals, book proposal plus monograph, etc.). Facilitated by a writing expert (and practicing academic), groups meet approximately once every three weeks, usually Wednesday mornings in the APG timeslot (9.15-10.45 AM).
2. Academic Communications Skills Workshops
As part of the Academic Practice Workshops, the Academic Communications team offers a series of workshops to assist Fellows in fine-tuning their oral and written academic communication skills. In 2014-15, these will include workshops on public speaking and presentation skills (3 sessions in October), on various aspects of writing for publication (e.g. how to rhetorically shape an article with a particular journal in mind; revising and dealing with referee feedback; designing an effective book proposal), and on writing in pursuit of an academic career (e.g. putting together a strategic ‘job market package’; organizational and rhetorical considerations in research-proposal writing). These workshops aim to respond in terms of focus and content to the career-related needs expressed by the Fellows and, where possible, draw on synergies with faculty members with particular expertise on the topic in question.
Weekly tutorials provide the opportunity for one-on-one sessions with a member of the Academic Communications Skills team to discuss and revise writing in progress. These sessions can also be used to practice ‘dry runs’ of seminar/conference presentations or job talks, discuss cover letters and other application materials, etc. Fellows can also arrange for on-site observation and feedback on small and large-group teaching.
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