WGS PhD Workshop Carousel

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Wageningen Graduate Schools

PhD Workshop Carousel

Friday 24 May 2019

Orion Building (West Wing), Wageningen University Campus

0.3 ECTS


Every year, Wageningen Graduate Schools (WGS) organises a one-day event for PhD candidates consisting of a diverse set of workshops that deal with all sorts of elements important for PhDs. These workshops are generally set up as teasers that give insight into more elaborate courses and workshops organised by Wageningen Graduate Schools. We recommend that you participate the whole day as this also gives you a good networking opportunity. At the end of the day, there will be drinks and a dinner. 


The programme consists of 4 workshop sessions over the day (two before and two after lunch). Each session consists of 6 parallel running workshops of 1.5 hours each. Topics that are dealt with are listed below. at the bottom of the page, you will find a registration form, which you can use to register your participation and to indicate your preferences regarding the workshops that you can participate in. Each workshop has a maximum number of participants, and workshops are filled on a first come, first served basis. So, to ensure that you can participate in your most favourite workshops, register early. Once a workshop is fully booked, this will be indicated in the list below as well as in the registration form.

8:30-8:45 Registration  
9:00-10:30 SESSION 1 Rmarkdown & Rbookdown (1) Live like a genius (1) Story for academics Unlocking your scientific entrepreneurial potential Essentials of scientific writing (1) Supervising MSc students (1)
10:30-11:00 Coffee Break  
11:00-12:30 SESSION 2 Rmarkdown & Rbookdown (2) Live like a genius (2) Presentation panic (1) Designing an attractive and effective poster
Essentials of scientific writing (2) Supervising MSc students (2)
12:30-13:30 Lunch  
13:30-15:00 SESSION 3 Mobilising your scientific network (1) Research data and scientific publishing in a changing world Presentation panic (2) Communication in academia Pitch workshop (1) Essentials in time management (1)
15:00-15:30 Coffee Break  
15:30-17:00 SESSION 4 Mobilising your scientific network (2) Inspringtheater: Dealing with stress Advanced Methods for searching and organising literature
Writing propositions Pitch workshop (2) Essentials in time management (2)
17:00-18:00 Drinks  
18:00-19:00 Dinner  
  1. Rmarkdown & Rbookdown (Lecturers: Tiny van Boekel / Jos Hageman, WUR)
    This workshop demonstrates R Markdown, a file format for making dynamic documents using R/RStudio. It combines writing of a manuscript with the statistical analysis in one document, in one process. No more, separate word file(s) for the manuscript and separate R file(s) for the statistical analysis.
  2. Live like a genius (Lecturer: Frans Duijts - De Hoofdzaken)
    Take a look in the brain of some creative geniuses. How did they become successful, what can we learn from them and apply in our own daily life.
  3. Story for academics (Lecturer: Christine Taylor - Wageningen In'To Languages)
    Researchers and academics struggle to communicate their research and experiences with society. Effective narrative tools like story can make this task more effective and enjoyable. A well composed story enables multi-disciplinary cooperation, successful funding applications, and positive interactions with the media. Structure is the foundation you need to tell great stories. Story structures can be as simple or as complicated as you want them to be, accommodating everything from Little Red Riding Hood to Game of Thrones. They can be used to put together a pitch or a grant proposal. Understanding story structure and how the parts fit together will help you craft and tell better stories in the future. In this interactive workshop, participants will learn a basic story structure that they can use to share their research with a broader public. Participants will see those stories in a different light when they are done and have a method for analysing stories they want to tell!
  4. Unlocking your scientific entrepreneurial potential (Lecturer: Gitte Schober / Lisa Ploum)
    Have you ever imagined how your scientific results could be used by someone outside the university? Or how you can develop a practical solution for a research problem? Entrepreneurial skills and tools can help you develop an actual prototype or a roadmap to realize your research in practice, keeping end-users or customers in mind. This workshop will give you an overview on the latest developments in scientific entrepreneurship and the possibilities for you to use entrepreneurial skills and tools in your own research and career.
  5. Essentials of Scientific Writing (Lecturer: Peter Griffiths - Wageningen In'To Languages)
    Many writers find it difficult to create a clear narrative. They struggle not only with content but also with language. In the end, writers often sacrifice readability for content because they don’t understand how good writing works. In this workshop we’ll discuss the linguistic elements of clear writing, including good paragraph structure, sentence length, concrete vs abstract subjects, nominalization and general elements of coherency. After each discussion, we’ll do a short exercise to gain hands-on experience.
  6. Supervising MSc students (Lecturer: Erik Heijmans - WUR Education Support Centre)
    In this workshop you will be provided with some general information about supervising BSc & MSc thesis students at Wageningen University and discuss good practices, expectations of staff as well as students and basic skills, including intercultural issues. Furthermore there obviously will be room for questions. The workshop is a summary and a teaser for the two-day training on thesis supervision offered several times a year by the Education Support Centre.
  7. Presentation Panic – Dealing with Nerves (Lecturer: Marloes Harkema - Freelance skills trainer)
    Your stomach is queasy, your palms are sweaty, your mind has gone blank about your opening lines and your mind wanders to negative thoughts: I’ll forget what I want to say, The audience will be bored and fall asleep, Everyone will see my knees, hands, body shaking, My voice will wobble uncontrollably, I’ll get asked loads of questions that I don’t know the answer to, I’ll start waffling off the point and lose track of what I am saying. Recognize any of this? Well, if you are like most people, then public speaking or presenting is one of your major fears. Yet these skills are often called upon in your PhD. It might not be directly defending your PHD thesis to an audience of a hundred people, but giving presentations to staff or team members is also a common enough occurrence. In this practical workshop Marloes Harkema will teach you strategies and techniques how to better manage your nerves before and during presentations. Together we will go through some exercises that will help you deal with nervousness and to deliver your speech that might wow the audience...or at least leaves them feeling satisfied ;). The tips and exercises definitely will make you better prepared for defending your PhD thesis!
  8. Designing an attractive and effective poster (Lecturer: Caro Struijke - Wageningen In'To Languages)
    What attracts an audience to my poster? What makes them look at it longer? How can I present my results in a clear way? During this short workshop you will learn : what makes a poster attractive, how to present text, pictures and graphs, how to make your poster self-explanatory, how to make use of colour schemes. In groups you will evaluate existing posters and you may bring your own (colour-printed on A4 paper) to receive feedback from your peers and your instructor.
  9. Mobilising your Scientific Network (Lecturer: Dick van Vlooten - Di Cuore)
    The workshop focusses on 'meeting'. What do you do, what do you avoid, what do you talk about. And we touch on 'maintain' - how to move around in your networks. It is important to understand that networking takes time and is about investing in the future. So however busy you are, save up on your social capital by spending a little team each week. Networking is important, not urgent. The workshop is short and very interactive - networking is a verb and so is the character of the workshop - do, experience, apply.
  10. Research data and scientific publishing in a changing world (Lecturer: Hilde van Zeeland & Anna Besse-Lototskaya - Wageningen University Library)
    Science is opening up. Publishers, funders, universities and research communities are focusing more and more on publishing Open Access and making research data available. But what are the effects of being ‘open’? And how do you do it? In this workshop, you will be introduced to the world of Open Access publishing and Open Data. We will show you different Open Access options and tools. We will also explain how and where you can make your dataset available, as well as how to find existing datasets to reuse. Finally, you will be informed about the re-use of published material for your PhD thesis.
  11. Communication in Academia (Lecturer: Claudius van de Vijver - Graduate School PE&RC)
    Because we tend to ignore the basic rules of communication we very often feel misunderstood, not heard, ignored which can lead to disappointment, stress, time-delay, conflict, and.... This workshop addresses many of the occurring communicative issues in the academic arena and how these can be solved.
  12. Pitch Workshop (Lecturer: Mariska Wessels - Wageningen In'To Languages)
    Knowing how to present your idea in a convincing manner is an indispensable skill. Scientists must be able to explain their work effectively and memorably to non-specialist audiences as well as to their peers. This 1.5 hour workshop provides you with practical tools to develop both a compact and convincing message and inspiring delivery. You will discover creative approaches in delivering an effective pitch, learn vocal and performance techniques to engage and inspire an audience and to bring content to life. You will learn to develop body language and voice skills to communicate powerfully, to craft a captivating short pitch using examples and metaphors, and to explain in 60 seconds what the heart is of what you do and what the importance and relevance is or may be.
  13. Essentials in Time Management (Lecturer: Barend van den Broek - Valley Consult)
    Time Management is managing yourself. A PhD candidate has to deal with issues such as: setting goals, define activities, plan, prioritize and perform. On top of that you need to swat a few flies that pester you, like facebook, email and whatsapp. Believe it or not, you can do this and still enjoy PhD life.
  14. Jump-in Theater - Dealing with stress (Lecturer: Inspring Theater)
    It’s common knowledge that getting a PhD is hard. It’s meant to be. Some even say that if you’re not up all night working or skipping meals, you’re doing it wrong. Plenty of jobs require work outside the typical 9-to-5-hours. But scientists’ hours sometimes veer into absurdity, because of the sheer randomness of the hours sometimes required. We all have to deal with physical and emotional stress in a certain way. Stress and burn-out have become an increasing and often-discussed phenomenon over the last decade. Are these ‘normal’ feelings that come with taking things serious? What stresses you out? How do you deal with it? The performance ‘Dealing With Stress’ shows 3 different persons dealing with pressure and shows the emotions that come with this. In the workshop the audience discusses ways to deal with it, communicating with internal and external factors of stress.
  15. Advanced Methods for Searching and Organizing literature (Lecturer: Marleen Noomen & Annemie Kersten - Wageningen University Library)
    21st century science has to deal with an overload in research literature. About 50 million journal articles have been published so far, and the global scientific output doubles every nine years. How to find the literature you need? What is the best place to search, Google Scholar, Scopus or Web of Science? How to limit your search to only relevant papers? And how to organize references and pdfs you collected? In this workshop we will introduce you the methods of searching and organizing literature. You will test several literature databases, create your own smart search query and learn the possibilities of EndNote or Mendeley.
  16. Writing Propositions (Lecturer: Claudius van de Vijver - Graduate School PE&RC & Peter Vermeulen - Wageningen Institute for Environment and Climate Research)
    What are propositions and how to write a good one?

a) PhD candidates defending their thesis at Wageningen University & Research and registered at one of the Wageningen Graduate Schools *
b) Postdocs of Wageningen University that are registered at one of the Wageningen Graduate Schools
€ 50,- € 60,-
All others € 100,- € 110,-

1 The course fee includes coffee/tea, lunch, drinks, ánd a dinner at the end of the day
2 The Early-Bird Fee applies to anyone who REGISTERS ON OR BEFORE 3 MAY 2019. The Early-Bird policy is such that the moment of REGISTRATION (and not payment) is leading for determining the fee that applies to you.
* The reduced fee applies to all PE&RC PhD candidates, so also to PE&RC PhD candidates that will not defend their PhD thesis at Wageningen University.

  • Up to 2 (two) weeks prior to the start of the event, cancellation is free of charge.
  • Up to 1 (one) week prior to the start of the event, a fee of € 50,- will be charged.
  • In case of cancellation within one week prior to the start of the event, a fee of € 75,- will be charged.
  • If you do not show at all, a fee of € 100,- will nevertheless be charged.

Note: If you would like to cancel your registration, ALWAYS inform us (and do note that you will be kept to the cancellation conditions)


The WGS PhD Workshop Carousel is organised by the PhD programme coordinators of the 6 graduate schools that jointly form "Wageningen Graduate Schools". These are:

Food Technology, Agrobiotechnology, Nutrition and Health Science (VLAG)
Yvonne Smolders
Email: yvonne.smolders@wur.nl
Experimental Plant Sciences (EPS)
Susan Urbanus
Email: susan.urbanus@wur.nl
Wageningen Institute of Animal Sciences (WIAS)
Marianne Bruining
Email: marianne.bruining@wur.nl
Wageningen School of Social Sciences (WASS)
Fennie van Straalen
Email: fennie.vanstraalen@wur.nl
The Graduate School for Production Ecology & Resource Conservation
Claudius van de Vijver / Lennart Suselbeek
Email: claudius.vandevijver@wur.nl / lennart.suselbeek@wur.nl
Wageningen Institute for Environment and Climate Research (WIMEK)
Peter Vermeulen
Email: peter1.vermeulen@wur.nl

For general enquires and questions in relation to the organisation of this year's WGS PhD Workshop Carousel, please contact Yvonne Smolders (VLAG; yvonne.smolders@wur.nl). For any questions related to your payment for the carousel, please contact Heleen Danen (WASS; heleen.danen@wur.nl). If you would like to change your registration details or cancel your registration altogether, please contact Jacqueline Verhoef (PE&RC; office.pe@wur.nl).


To register your participation in the WGS PhD Workshop Carousel 2019, please fill in the form below and click "register". DEADLINE FOR REGISTRATION IS MONDAY 20 MAY 2019!