Activities :: Soft Skills 2016

Soft Skills: Communication (level I)

Ana Salgado

24th February to 22nd April, 2016

Framework: Communication skills should be internalized as a dimension of the natural social skills repertoire (ODEP, 2010). Soft skills are extremely important to develop critical thinking, ability to argue, interpreting and producing high quality scientific knowledge capacity (Firth, 2011; Schulz, 2008). Research shows that gaps in this domain tend to have a detrimental effect on professional lifelong success.

Goals: By the end of this course students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate the ability to reflect critically about the impact of communication in interpersonal relationships (potentialities and constraints of communication);
  • Identify and apply the necessary tools (knowledge, attitudes and behaviors) that support the development of public speaking skills;
  • Communicate effectively in an oral presentation;
  • Formulate a well-organized argument supported by evidence, strengthening the researcher’s role in the scientific community and in the society in general;
  • Achieve higher rates of satisfaction and lower levels of anxiety associated with public speaking.

Teaching-Learning Methodology: The sessions of this training programme will combine theoretical content informed by research with practical exercises (e.g. talks, interviews, meetings), to allow the gradual acquisition of communication skills through “learning by doing”, following a student-centered approach to teaching and learning. The analysis and discussion of practical examples will not only enable reflection and motivate for change, but also show concrete strategies “how to” effectively use communication skills. In addition, the sessions will include reading and discussion of research papers for each topic; watching videos; role-play; and invitations to participate in events about communication and public speaking.

Biosketch: Ana Salgado is a PhD in Educational Psychology by Universidade do Minho. She is currently a lecturer at the Human and Social Sciences Area in the Allied Health Technologies School ESTSP-IPP. Ana worked for six years as a lecturer at the Portuguese Catholic University at Braga, and also as a school psychologist in private and public schools (from Kindergarten to High School). Ana is also experienced in designing and delivering adult training in communication skills. She is an active member of Invicta Toastmasters club at Porto. Her research interests include communication, motivation and self-regulated learning.

Calendar: Every friday at 14:00-17:00 in the following dates: 26 February; 4, 11, 18 March; 1, 8, 15, 22 April (total of 8 sessions). The sessions will take place in the teaching room (1st floor) in CAUP/Planetário do Porto.

Participants: There will be a maximum of 15 students to be accepted according to the following priority: (1) PhD::SPACE fellows, (2) Students of the Doctoral Program in Astronomy at U.Porto, (3) Other PhD students or young postdocs working in IA, (4) Other PhD Students in DFA. Within each category more advanced students (as defined by the starting date) have a higher priority.

Organization: 3º Ciclo em Astronomia da Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade do Porto.