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Academic Communication Lesson 5 Please sit with one partner. Get two handouts each from the front desk. Course Website: staff.ustc.edu.cn/~acadcom.

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Presentation on theme: "Academic Communication Lesson 5 Please sit with one partner. Get two handouts each from the front desk. Course Website: staff.ustc.edu.cn/~acadcom."— Presentation transcript:

1 Academic Communication Lesson 5 Please sit with one partner. Get two handouts each from the front desk. Course Website: staff.ustc.edu.cn/~acadcom

2 “But my research is harder to explain than zircons!” “ The zircon talk the teacher gave was easy science. My paper is hard! ” “ The zircon talk the teacher gave was easy science. My paper is hard! ” Part of the reason it was easy was the way I explained it. Part of the reason it was easy was the way I explained it. A good presenter helps an audience understand complex material, particularly in the Introduction. A good presenter helps an audience understand complex material, particularly in the Introduction. But how???? But how????

3 Handout “Effective Explanations: How to make difficult material seem easier” Use intuitive functional definitions Use intuitive functional definitions What does it DO?What does it DO? Use analogies Use analogies What familiar thing is it similar to?What familiar thing is it similar to? Use pictures/illustrations Use pictures/illustrations Visual analogyVisual analogy

4 Effective Explanations Use intuitive functional definitions Use intuitive functional definitions What does it DO?What does it DO? Use analogies Use analogies What familiar thing is it similar to?What familiar thing is it similar to? Use pictures/illustrations Use pictures/illustrations Visual analogyVisual analogy What is the hardest thing to explain in your paper? What is the hardest thing to explain in your paper? How could you use these ideas to make that seem easier? How could you use these ideas to make that seem easier?

5 Reminder: Handouts, Class PPT, Schedule available in electronic form at available in electronic form athttp://staff.ustc.edu.cn/~acadcom Do not look at the PPT file until you have attended that lesson. Do not look at the PPT file until you have attended that lesson.

6 In the Conclusion Section of your presentation… How can you restate the points of the body in one sentence each? How can you restate the points of the body in one sentence each? What is the most important point (result) you want the audience to remember? What is the most important point (result) you want the audience to remember? What practical application is there of this work? (or other motivation to remember) What practical application is there of this work? (or other motivation to remember) What further questions came up because of this work? What further questions came up because of this work?

7 Conclusion Timing: >1:15, 1:15, <2:00 [30s?] How can you restate the points of the body in one sentence each? [30s?] How can you restate the points of the body in one sentence each? [30s?] What is the most important result you want the audience to remember? [30s?] What is the most important result you want the audience to remember? [20s?] What practical application is there of this work? (or other motivation to remember it or read the paper) [20s?] What practical application is there of this work? (or other motivation to remember it or read the paper) [15s?] What further questions came up because of this work? [15s?] What further questions came up because of this work? Adjust timing as needed for your result! Adjust timing as needed for your result!

8 Conclusion Strategies Strategy 1: Restate result, then evidence “ In conclusion, [ ].. We saw evidence for this as follows. ” “ In conclusion, [ ].. We saw evidence for this as follows. ” Strategy 2: Restate evidence, then result “ In conclusion, [ ]. In this research we saw this evidence:. This proves that. ” “ In conclusion, [ ]. In this research we saw this evidence:. This proves that. ”

9 Strategy 1: Restate result then summarize evidence Slide 1: Restate main result and why we care Slide 1: Restate main result and why we care Central Idea sentence?Central Idea sentence? Application / motivation / possible effectApplication / motivation / possible effect Slide 2: Review most important evidence points Slide 2: Review most important evidence points One spoken sentence each, or 2 short sentencesOne spoken sentence each, or 2 short sentences Slide 3: Open questions / future research Slide 3: Open questions / future research

10 Strategy 2: Summarize evidence, then restate the result (as in the zircon example presentation) Slide 1: Review most important evidence points Slide 1: Review most important evidence points One spoken sentence each, or 2 short sentencesOne spoken sentence each, or 2 short sentences Slide 2: Restate main result and why we care Slide 2: Restate main result and why we care Central Idea sentence?Central Idea sentence? Application / motivation / possible effectApplication / motivation / possible effect Slide 3: Open questions / future research Slide 3: Open questions / future research

11 In class now, write a Conclusion transcript = the exact words you will say “ In conclusion …” / “As I end/conclude/finish…” “ In conclusion …” / “As I end/conclude/finish…” [Optional] “… the goal of this research was to …” [Optional] “… the goal of this research was to …” [25-40s?] restate the points of the body * [25-40s?] restate the points of the body * [15-30s?] restate the most important result to remember * [15-30s?] restate the most important result to remember * [20-30s?] give practical application or motivation * [20-30s?] give practical application or motivation * [15s?] give open questions or future research direction [15s?] give open questions or future research direction “ Thank you. Are there any questions? ” or similar (but not “ Thanks ” or “ Any questions? ” ) “ Thank you. Are there any questions? ” or similar (but not “ Thanks ” or “ Any questions? ” ) * May be in different order for your talk

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13 Two Big Introduction Problems Problem: Starting off too complex Problem: Starting off too complex Bad: complex technical terms in first minuteBad: complex technical terms in first minute Bad: assuming audience knows contextBad: assuming audience knows context Problem: Not giving motivation Problem: Not giving motivation not giving connection to real worldnot giving connection to real world

14 Clearly State the Context Audience needs context for your result Audience needs context for your result What field? What area? What topic? What field? What area? What topic? Compare to postal address: Compare to postal address: Country, City, Apartment

15 Address Information: Bad & Good Bad (missing key information): Murray Sherk Apartment 202 Good: China, Anhui, Hefei USTC, East Campus, Building 26, Apt. 202 Murray Sherk Your Introduction needs: 3 clear sentences to quickly “ funnel ” focus

16 Field, Area, Topic Near or at beginning of Introduction Near or at beginning of Introduction Make a general statement to identify your field: Make a general statement to identify your field: Bad: “ This is a Computer Science result. ”Bad: “ This is a Computer Science result. ” Good: “ Without computers, our modern world would grind to a halt. ”Good: “ Without computers, our modern world would grind to a halt. ” May or may not also be attention-getter May or may not also be attention-getter Vital! In your exam session, which field it is may be very unclear to your audience! Vital! In your exam session, which field it is may be very unclear to your audience! For experts, it is still useful since it lets the audience get used to your voice with something easy to understand.For experts, it is still useful since it lets the audience get used to your voice with something easy to understand.

17 Field, Area, Topic Narrows down the focus Narrows down the focus Your area may not be well known Your area may not be well known Even experts may appreciate knowing where you believe this result “ fits ”. Even experts may appreciate knowing where you believe this result “ fits ”. Example: Is the result demonstrating a computer simulation technique that has medical applications, or is this medical research using a computer simulation? Example: Is the result demonstrating a computer simulation technique that has medical applications, or is this medical research using a computer simulation?

18 Field, Area, Topic Narrows down the focus enough so the title makes sense Narrows down the focus enough so the title makes sense May or may not get to the research question at this point May or may not get to the research question at this point Look at the handout examples: For each … Look at the handout examples: For each … Field?Field? Area?Area? Topic?Topic?

19 Bad Motivation Bad: “ This paper reveals how snorglings wimble. ” Bad: “ This paper reveals how snorglings wimble. ” Huh?Huh? for experts onlyfor experts only Bad: “ It is of interest to scientists to know how snorglings wimble. ” Bad: “ It is of interest to scientists to know how snorglings wimble. ” Why?Why? What type of scientist?What type of scientist?

20 Proper Motivation Good: “ Learning how snorglings wimble may help us develop more fuel-efficient cars and trucks. ” Good: “ Learning how snorglings wimble may help us develop more fuel-efficient cars and trucks. ” Even if I don ’ t know what “ snorgling ” or “ wimble ” means, I see why I should care. Even if I don ’ t know what “ snorgling ” or “ wimble ” means, I see why I should care. “ Snorgling ” and “ wimble ” are just words I invented for this example … “ Snorgling ” and “ wimble ” are just words I invented for this example ….. but special terms of your result may sound just as mysterious to your audience!.. but special terms of your result may sound just as mysterious to your audience!

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22 Strategies for Arguments “ Argument ” = “ Argument ” = “ claim ” + “ reasons and evidence ” Is the claim clear? Is the claim clear? Are these good reasons to accept the claim? Are these good reasons to accept the claim? Is there enough evidence to accept the claim (in the time you have)? Is there enough evidence to accept the claim (in the time you have)?

23 Strategies for Arguments Logic & Reason Logic & Reason objective facts plus logical thinkingobjective facts plus logical thinking Character & Credentials Character & Credentials “ I ’ m honest – I ’ m telling the truth ”“ I ’ m honest – I ’ m telling the truth ” “ I know what I ’ m talking about ”“ I know what I ’ m talking about ” “ They are honest and can speak with authority, and they believe this ”“ They are honest and can speak with authority, and they believe this ” Partly subjective, but “ expert opinion ”Partly subjective, but “ expert opinion ” Emotion Emotion fear, love, respect, loyalty, patriotism …fear, love, respect, loyalty, patriotism …

24 Claim: “You should practice “th” sounds every day until your exam.” Emotion Emotion “ Do it or you will fail the course! ”“ Do it or you will fail the course! ” “ Do it and you ’ ll get a high mark to make your mother proud of you. ”“ Do it and you ’ ll get a high mark to make your mother proud of you. ”

25 Practice “th” every day now! Emotion Emotion “ Do it or you will fail the course! ”“ Do it or you will fail the course! ” Character & Credentials Character & Credentials “ Native English speakers who have taught thousands of Chinese students just like you, say this practice is vital. ”“ Native English speakers who have taught thousands of Chinese students just like you, say this practice is vital. ” “ Chinese students with great English spend a lot of time practicing like this. ”“ Chinese students with great English spend a lot of time practicing like this. ”

26 Practice “th” every day now! Emotion Emotion “ Do it or you will fail the course! ”“ Do it or you will fail the course! ” Character & Credentials Character & Credentials “ Native English speakers say …”“ Native English speakers say …” Logic & Reason Logic & Reason “ th ” sounds are not part of Chinese“ th ” sounds are not part of Chinese Chinese face muscles and tongue are not used to doing the right thing for “ th ”Chinese face muscles and tongue are not used to doing the right thing for “ th ” muscles learn by repetition over timemuscles learn by repetition over time

27 Sometimes the strategies overlap C&C can be stronger combined with L&R C&C can be stronger combined with L&R “ He saw a tiger on East Campus ” but one person is easily wrong, crazy, or lying“ He saw a tiger on East Campus ” but one person is easily wrong, crazy, or lying “ 200 students saw a tiger on East Campus ” is much more convincing.“ 200 students saw a tiger on East Campus ” is much more convincing. The witness of many people logically gives stronger evidence than just one such personThe witness of many people logically gives stronger evidence than just one such person L&R is weakened by inserting opinion (C&C). L&R is weakened by inserting opinion (C&C). “ This fact proves this claim ” is much better than “ I believe this fact proves this claim ”

28 Scientific Arguments Use L&R for 90% or more of evidence Use L&R for 90% or more of evidence C&C and Emotion can be used to motivate, but are considered very weak C&C and Emotion can be used to motivate, but are considered very weak Never use “ Proof by intimidation ” at an international conference Never use “ Proof by intimidation ” at an international conference “ Believe it! ” (because I say so)“ Believe it! ” (because I say so) “ If you don ’ t believe it you ’ re stupid ”“ If you don ’ t believe it you ’ re stupid ” “ As we all know …” (Dajia zhidao?)“ As we all know …” (Dajia zhidao?)

29 Argument Strategy Exercise Working with your partner, figure out how to use all 3 strategies to argue that the following claim is true: Working with your partner, figure out how to use all 3 strategies to argue that the following claim is true: Claim: “ Intelligent beings from outer space have visited Earth. ” (As usual, please use only English in your discussion)

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31 Some Possible L&R Arguments “ Mysteries like how ancient people build huge things like Egyptian pyramids – easy to solve if helped by advanced aliens. ” “ Mysteries like how ancient people build huge things like Egyptian pyramids – easy to solve if helped by advanced aliens. ” “ So many planets in Universe implies so many aliens that it ’ s likely one visited. ” “ So many planets in Universe implies so many aliens that it ’ s likely one visited. ” Bad math actuallyBad math actually “ It ’ s easy to get a girlfriend at USTC because there are 3,000 girls here ”“ It ’ s easy to get a girlfriend at USTC because there are 3,000 girls here ” ignores 12,000 boys competing for the girls and compatibility issues.ignores 12,000 boys competing for the girls and compatibility issues.

32 Some Possible C&C Arguments “ Governments of many major nations have seriously investigated UFO sightings and cannot explain them all as false. ” “ Governments of many major nations have seriously investigated UFO sightings and cannot explain them all as false. ” “ In the past 100 years thousands of people around the world have reported seeing UFOs or aliens. ” “ In the past 100 years thousands of people around the world have reported seeing UFOs or aliens. ”

33 Some Possible Emotion Arguments “ Aliens advanced enough for space flight must be scientifically ahead of us. We must prepare to defend ourselves! (i.e. at least behave like we believe they exist) ” “ Aliens advanced enough for space flight must be scientifically ahead of us. We must prepare to defend ourselves! (i.e. at least behave like we believe they exist) ” “ If they ’ ve visited, then they ’ re technologically superior and have not destroyed us. Maybe they ’ re helping us develop like parents guiding children. ” “ If they ’ ve visited, then they ’ re technologically superior and have not destroyed us. Maybe they ’ re helping us develop like parents guiding children. ”

34 Homework Write out all of what you will say for your Conclusion section in full English sentences in a computer document. Bring a printout to class next week. (Do NOT it to me.) Bring a printout to class next week. (Do NOT it to me.) Conclusion transcript will be part of the full transcript you hand in later Conclusion transcript will be part of the full transcript you hand in later good job now  less work latergood job now  less work later Full transcript due at end of your exam session – worth 10% of your course gradeFull transcript due at end of your exam session – worth 10% of your course grade

35 Homework Read the “Avoid these common mistakes” handout (on the other side of the “Strategies for Arguments” sheet) Useful when you are deciding on wording for your Conclusion section transcript


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