Teaching and Training Resources

Graduate Student Expectations and Milestones


This is a sheet passed on through multiple labs. Edit it for your own program, and make it a living document with your students, adding their insights as well as yours!


Hold That Thought!


Reexamination of common assumptions about science communication

See also:  Expand your view, a companion article

*License: Copyright Oregon State University, 2008; posted with special permission.

Jumping into the policy puddle


Article by Allison Leidner, a graduate student at Dept of Biology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC about ways graduate students in science can gain experience interacting with policy makers.


Leading change handouts: June 2011


Collection of handouts and materials used by Peter Redstone and Martin Bloxham during the June 2011 training (June training website includes the presentation slides and the facilitators' bios).

See also the packet of strategic thinking handouts.

Media Communications Toolkit developed by COMPASS


This training package is brought to you by COMPASS and the Leopold Leadership Program. We hope it gives you the tools you need to lead a fun, interactive communications workshop or course for your students. The training begins with a brief overview of communications principles – things that we all take for granted but are worth reviewing. It then introduces the Message Box and the idea of tailoring your message for your audience. The training culminates with media interview scenarios. As you know from your personal experience with the scenarios, role-playing can be a powerful way to transform information into action. The package includes:

- Instructor’s Handbook
- Presentation

- The Message Box handout

- Interview Scenarios

- Interview Scenario Evaluation Forms

The content is extracted from Escape from the Ivory Tower: A Guide to Making Your Science by Nancy Baron, which provides additional context for the elements of the package.

*License: Attribution - No Derivatives

Mindmapping handout


Handout from a 2010 All Cohort Reunion session facilitated by Peter Redstone and Martin Bloxham.  It is useful in multiple contexts:

• An alternative to brainstorming as a way for a group to explore a whole idea

• Structured decision-making

• Deconstructing or analyzing a problem: causes, stakeholders, symptoms, etc.

Tony Buzan, a creativity expert, is credited with originating the tool.

Mission Vision: Defining Your Research Group


During the Curriculum Resource Exchange session at the 2012 All Cohort Reunion, Jessica Hellmann presented this poster on creating mission and vision statements with your research group to help motivate everyone's best work. Jessica provides additional context about how her lab created and uses their statements in a post on her blog. You may also be interested in this Nature interview with Jessica on how the mission and vision statements shape her activities as a scientist.

Opening: Ice breaker


This resource is an excellent way to get a group engaged with one another quickly.  It is easy to facilitate and is an alternative to starting or opening a meeting with introductions.  It was introduced to us by Kate Powers, a consultant who has done several workshops at Stanford.

Pitch and Post


Pitch and Post is a simple, fast, and interactive!  It involves all participants in the process of giving feedback to the presenter. Use it as a team-building activity to enable quick feedback.

PMI-OPV technique


Techniques to bring new thinking and approaches into strategy-building and problem-solving: PMI-OPV (plus-minus-interesting, other point of view). Dawn Wright learned these techniques from Martin Bloxham of Barefoot Thinking during her Leopold Leadership training and customized them to share with her colleagues. See also her blog post on this topic.