Graduate and Postdoc Workshops

Communication Workshops for Graduate Students and Postdocs

The Hume Center provides free writing and speaking workshops on general strategies, as well as genre-specific support for graduate students and postdocs from all disciplines. Topics include research statements, journal articles, multimedia presentations, and more.

Until further notice, all graduate and postdoc writing workshops will be offered virtually through Zoom. Zoom links for upcoming workshops and electronic materials for past workshops (e.g. slides, handouts, videos) are available on our Canvas site. Please CLICK HERE to self-enroll in the Hume Graduate and Postdoc Workshops Canvas site.

This series of workshops is generously supported by the Office of the Vice Provost for Graduate Education and the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs.

2019-2020 Schedule

Spring 2020

Giving Feedback on Student Writing (Grads & Postdocs)

Zandra L. Jordan, PhD
Wednesday, April 29th, 12:30PM - 1:30PM
Zoom via Canvas

What should you focus on when commenting on student writing, and how can you manage the paper load? In this interactive workshop, we'll review principles for providing formative and summative feedback, strategies for promoting critical thinking and revision through your comments, and tips for avoiding the paper trap! Click here to register by Mon., Apri. 27th. 

Conveying Your Research in a Nutshell: The Research Statement and the Dissertation Abstract (All Grads)

Becky Richardson, PhD
Friday, May 1st, 12:30PM - 1:30PM
Zoom via Canvas

In this workshop, we'll discuss strategies for describing your research to an audience beyond your advisors or committee, and doing so succinctly and compellingly. We'll concentrate especially on two genres that search committees in academia typically ask for -- the research statement and the dissertation abstract. These can be particularly difficult to write because they ask us to zoom out on years of work and hundreds of pages of writing. And the audience for these documents is often a search committee that doesn't work in your particular field or even your discipline. All stages welcome! To get the most out of this workshop, you might want to bring your draft or ideas toward a draft. Click here to register by Wed., Apr. 29th. You must use your Stanford email address.

Winter 2020

The Common Structure of Research Articles: Understanding the Moves (All Grads)

Mutallip Anwar, PhD
Thursday, Jan. 23rd, 3:30 PM - 5 PM
Hume Center Lounge (Room 101)

Are you working on a research article or dissertation but not sure how to organize various components into a coherent research report? This workshop will focus on the prototypical IMRD (Introduction, Method, Results, and Discussion) structure of the research article genre. Drawing on literature from genre studies as well as applied and corpus linguistics, we will first discuss common rhetorical moves in each section of research articles in leading journals. For example, almost all research introductions typically include the following three moves: establishing a territory to create the context for current research, identifying a niche that needs to be filled through further research, and occupying the niche by announcing present research. We will also cover other moves typically used in method, results, and discussion sections. Then you will apply this framework to a sample research article in your discipline or a research paper draft you are currently working on. You will come away from this workshop with a clearer understanding of how to construct and organize each section of research articles in your discipline. Click here to register by Tues., Jan. 21st. You must use your Stanford email address.

Responding to Reviewer Comments: The Critic as Collaborator (Grads & Postdocs)

Holly Fulton, PhD
Friday, Feb. 7th, Noon - 1:30PM
Hume Center Lounge (Room 101)

The wait is over—your article has been returned, with the editor and reviewers’ comments. What now? This workshop lays out the next steps, providing guidelines for interpreting, applying, and responding to reviewer feedback—the good, the bad, and the ugly. The facilitator will share several examples of reviewer feedback on manuscripts (one rejected and one accepted after a “revise and resubmit” verdict), with an overview of how the authors ‘crunched’ and applied the feedback. The workshop also offers resources for managing frustration and leveraging the critic as a kind of collaborator. Click here to register by Wed., Feb. 5th. You must use your Stanford email address.

Fall 2019

Quick Bytes: Writing Stellar Fellowship Applications

Zandra L. Jordan, PhD
Tuesday, Oct. 3rd, Noon - 1:15 PM
Tressider Oak West

Working on fellowship applications this quarter? Facing a looming NSF or NIH deadline, or just want to get a jump start on future applications? Get a just-in-time overview of general principles and best practices for writing stellar fellowship applications in this interactive workshop. 

Register here by Oct. 4th. You will need to login to the VPGE portal.

Crafting Persuasive Research Statements (BEAM)

Meg Formato, PhD
Tuesday, Oct. 23rd, 9AM - 11 AM
BEAM 2nd floor conference room

Your research statement must convince a committee that your research is timely, important, feasible and fundable. This workshop will provide examples of successful research statements and interactive exercises to help you explian your projects in concise, non-specialist language. Click here to register. You will need to login to BEAM's Handshake platform.

Writing a Teaching Philosophy (Postdocs)

Tessa Brown, PhD
Monday, Nov. 4th, 4:30 PM - 6 PM
Hume Center Lounge (Room 101)

Writing a teaching philosophy demands a challenging balance between lofty ideals and everyday examples, all in the span of a page or two. In this workshop, you'll learn how to achieve this balance. We'll discuss some genre conventions of the teaching philosophy statement, study a few examples, and then employ editing and revision exercises on our own statements and on peers'. To get the most out of the workshop, please bring a draft of your statement. If you've never written one before, try to bring some notes on things like your teaching, tutoring, or mentoring experience; your goals across a quarter and in a given class session; and/or some activities or teaching tactics you use in the classroom. Click here to register. 

Demystifying the Publishing Process (Grads)

Jennifer Johnson, PhD
Monday, Nov. 18th, 3:30 PM - 5 PM
Hume Center Lounge (Room 101)

Are you thinking about developing your conference paper, dissertation chapter or seminar paper into something publishable? This workshop is designed to introduce the publishing process to graduate students. We will discuss choosing a venue for your piece, audience and editor expectations, submissions policies, responding to a call for papers, and the review and revision processes. While the workshop facilitator will draw on her recent journey as a journal editor and writer in the social sciences, graduate students across the disciplines are encouraged to attend. Participants should bring their computers and are welcome to bring a working manuscript or abstract/proposal. Click here to register. 

Preparing a Memorable Job Talk (Grads & Postdocs)

Helen Lie, Ed.D
Tuesday, Dec. 3rd, 3 PM - 5 PM
Beam, 1st floor conference room

Giving a successful job talk requires more than simply knowing your topic inside and out. In this interactive session, learn strategies you can use to structure your talk, make your content memorable for diverse and interdisciplinary audiences, and enhance your delivery. Register via Handshake here

Weekly Vocal Yoga (open to all)

Tom Freeland, PhD
Wednesdays Noon - 1 PM
Graduate School of Business (check here for the current room location)

Vocal Yoga is a weekly drop-in voice workshop designed to help you get your voice in shape! Strengthen your speaking voice through theatre-based voice training exercises that explore breathing technique, resonance, and articulation. These sessions are open to the entire Stanford community and resume every quarter from weeks two to ten. Contact for more information. 


-After the "Shitty First Draft" (Grads/PostDocs)

-Quick Bytes: Effective Slide Design & Delivery. Strategies for Maximizing Your Impact

-Responding to Reviewer Comments: Using FeedbackWhile Keeping Your Vision (Grads/PostDocs)

-The Postdoc's Guide to Developing a Winning Writing Practice

-Telling Stories with Qualitative Data (All Grads)

-Your Research in a Nutshell: The Dissertation Abstract and Research Statement

-Planning Your Summer Writing

*Have an idea for a graduate or postdoc writing workshop? Please contact us at

Workshop Survey

Feedback is essential for improving our existing workshops and for the development of new ones.  Once you've participated in one of our workshops, please help us by responding to our workshop survey for 2019-2020.

Additional Workshop Resources

Research statement for graduate student fellowship and grant proposals: workshop writing kit

This kit is written to accompany the workshop provided by the Hume Center.  The kit provides instruction for how to approach writing research statements for fellowship and grant proposals as well as practical worksheets to help you prepare, to write, and to revise your proposal.

Questions about workshops

Are workshops free? 

Yes, the workshops are free, but you need to register in advance. Spaces in workshops are typically capped at 20 participants and are allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Can anybody attend?

Workshops are open to graduate students who are registered at Stanford University in one of the seven schools. Visiting scholars and postdoctoral candidates are also welcome to attend.

What should I bring to the workshop?

Participants should bring a laptop or pen/paper to each workshop.

Where are the workshops located? 

Unless otherwise noted, workshops are held in the Hume Center.