Public engagement training
Are you a NERC-funded student or do we fund your scientific research? If so, you are eligible for free training to develop your science communication and public engagement skills. This is a great way to learn how to promote your research findings and ideas to different audiences.
Engaging the public with your research
NERC runs approximately nine of these courses a year at its office in Swindon. You learn, through hands-on sessions, how:
- the media works
- to write effectively
- to do confident radio interviews
- to design public engagement activities
These courses have proved to be very popular and well received by the people attending them. Some examples of feedback we have received from delegates on the course over the past 3 years are listed in the document below.
We bring in a number of experts to help deliver aspects of the course - you will have the opportunity to work with a science journalist working for one of the UK's leading national newspapers, a public engagement specialist, and a former BBC radio journalist to help you hone your interview skills.
Details of what is covered on both days of the course are available in the document below.
All courses are free, including overnight accommodation and evening meal between days one and two. We recognise that depending upon where you live, you may need some additional help to cover accommodation the night before the course – please get in touch with us if it is not realistic for you to travel to Swindon on the day of the course and arrive by 09:30. You are expected to arrange and pay for your own travel.
How to apply
To be eligible to apply for this funding you must be funded by NERC in one of the following ways:
- NERC studentship holder
- NERC grant or fellowship (you can be employed as part of the grant eg PDRA, you do not need to be the PI of the grant)
- Employed in one of NERC's research centres' (BAS, BGS, CEH, NCAS, NCEO or NOC)
(All NERC staff at BAS, BGS, CEH or NOC are requested to seek approval from their retained Learning and Development Manager (LDM) before registering as they will need to authorise you to attend the course on oracle.)
Due to the popularity of this course, we recommend that you register as early as possible in order to avoid disappointment - places are allocated on a first come first served basis.
There are nine courses planned for 2014:
- 20-21 January
- 12-13 February
- 17-18 March
- 28-29 April
- 20-21 May
- 19-20 June
- 13-14 October
- 11-12 November
- 8-9 December
No more than four dates will be open for registration at any one time.
Complete the online registration to apply for your place on a course. When acceptance of your on-line details have been acknowledged you should download the course training needs and confirmation form (below) which must be completed and returned six weeks prior to the start date of your course. Please note - non-return of the completed document within the stipulated deadline will result in your place being released and opened up for others to fill.
If, for whatever reason, you are unable to sign up for our course at the moment, there are a number of other free courses which will help to build you skills in public engagement and communicating your research to different audiences:
- Public engagement online training from the National Co-Ordinating Centre for Public Engagement
- Media workshops delivered by Sense about Science
Please remember that grant-holders must inform the NERC Press Office of any planned or unplanned media activity surrounding the research that NERC is supporting. We are here to give you advice and support in achieving the best and most appropriate media coverage for your work.
See NERC's research grants handbook for further details on NERC policy for communicating your research.
For further information about the course, or to discuss your attendance please contact Swindon Events.