You are here

Research Commons - Workshops for graduate students & postdoctoral fellows

The Research Commons is pleased to offer you a range of workshops. Register for upcoming workshops. Search by date in our workshops calendar.

If you do not see the topic(s) you are interested in and/or would like a specialized workshop for yourself and a group of colleagues, send a request to research-commons@sfu.ca.

SFU values diversity and is committed to inclusion. If you believe you require any disability related accommodations in order to fully access and participate in our workshops and/or events, please contact us directly at library-workshops@sfu.ca. Please contact us as soon as possible as some accommodations will require lead time to arrange (i.e. CART, ASL)

 

Digital Humanities

 

Next semester's workshops will be posted soon.

EAL/ESL

Next semester's workshops will be posted soon.

Learning

Challenging Impostor Syndrome

Ever feel like your success is due to luck?  That others around you are more intelligent?  That your graduate program made a mistake admitting you--a mistake they might realize soon?  If you have struggled with feeling like you don’t fit in academia, this workshop is for you.   We will focus on understanding and challenging “impostor syndrome”—a remarkably common syndrome amongst graduate students.  You will learn about research on the topic, hear others’ experiences and reflect on your own, and discover some concrete tools for dealing with the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours associated with feeling like an imposter.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, August 22, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:00am Surrey, Galleria 5, Rm 5100

Managing Up: The Student-Supervisor Relationship

In this interactive workshop, we will discuss:

  • how to maximize your relationship with your supervisor,
  • develop a clear sense of your rights and responsibilities as a student (and those of your supervisor and others involved in your graduate program),
  • solve common problems that sometimes beset the supervisory relationship.

Speakers at the workshop may include:

Dr. Jeff Derksen, Dean and Associate Provost, Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies | Office of Graduate Studies and Post Doctoral Fellows
Laura Reid, Ombudsperson | Office of the Ombudsperson

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, August 23, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Surrey, Galleria 5, Rm 5100

Research data management

Data De-Identification

This workshop will touch on issues related to sharing sensitive data and offer practical suggestions on how sensitive data can be prepared.

Note: Workshop title was formerly called "De-identify Your Data"

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, October 5, 2018 - 1:30pm to 3:00pm Burnaby, SFU's Big Data Hub (Applied Science Building - Flexible Meeting Room ASB 10908)

Introduction to Health Statistics

This presentation covers health related statistics including:

  • CCHS- annual component and mental health,
  • Canadian Survey of Disability,
  • Aboriginal Peoples Survey,
  • vital statistics,
  • CHMS,
  • Canadian Cancer Registry,
  • General Social Survey- Caregiving & Care Receiving,
  • Census of Population.

We will also talk about data dissemination (aggregate data and microdata/PUMF).

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, October 25, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Introduction to Business Statistics

The first part of the presentation covers various resources related to business statistics, ie,  retail, wholesale, import & export, Canadian business counts, household spending, financial statistics, and 2016 Census results on population, demography, income, education and labour force status. The second part of the presentation would be a website navigation on how to find those resources on our website, then wrap up by a Q & A.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, November 22, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

What is the Open Science Framework (OSF)?

The OSF is a free, open-source web app that manages research projects at all stages of the research lifecycle. It is used for documentation, file storage, versioning, collaboration, and it connects the various tools researchers currently use. The OSF is produced by the Center for Open Science (COS) and has over 60,000 users across various academic disciplines. Attend the workshop to learn more and explore the OSF here: https://osf.io/

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, September 24, 2018 - 10:30am to 12:00pm Burnaby, SFU's Big Data Hub (Applied Science Building - Flexible Meeting Room ASB 10908)

Find Data / Share Data

Are you interested in increasing the visibility of your research? This workshop will help you describe your data for long term access and findability.   As a bonus, we'll also show  you how to find data relevant to your research.

Some of the tools we'll be looking at are DataCite, Abacus, ICPSR and Radar.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, October 5, 2018 - 9:30am to 11:00am Burnaby, SFU's Big Data Hub (Applied Science Building - Flexible Meeting Room ASB 10908)

Secure data

Protect your research data by following strong security practices. This workshop will cover topics including: cloud storage, full disk encryption, threat modelling, communication and file sharing, account security, two-factor authentication (2FA), and digital preservation.

Learn how to keep data secure with SFU resources.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, October 5, 2018 - 11:30am to 1:00pm Burnaby, SFU's Big Data Hub (Applied Science Building - Flexible Meeting Room ASB 10908)

Research programming

Next semester's workshops will be posted soon.

Next semester's workshops will be posted soon.

Research software

Citation Management

Cite your sources easier and faster with Zotero

Want to make your research and writing more efficient? Hate the last minute rush of trying to create a correctly formatted bibliography? This workshop is for you! We will introduce Zotero, a citation management tool that can help you import, organize, share, and manage your citations and documents, as well as create correctly formatted in-text citations and bibliographies in almost any style -- in seconds.

Bring your laptop: this interactive workshop will cover registration, installation, and everything that you need to know to get up and running with Zotero.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Cite your sources easier and faster with Mendeley

Want to make your research and writing more efficient? Hate the last minute rush of trying to create a correctly formatted bibliography? This workshop is for you! We will introduce Mendeley, a citation management tool that can help you import, organize, share, and manage your citations and documents, as well as create correctly formatted in-text citations and bibliographies in almost any style -- in seconds.

Bring your laptop: this interactive workshop will cover registration, installation, and everything that you need to know to get up and running with Mendeley.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - 12:30pm to 1:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

GIS

Introduction to Spatial Thinking and ArcGIS

  • Which areas in Ontario are susceptible to drought? Which areas are susceptible to longer periods of drought and which to shorter periods?
  • What is the travel route of the Anna's hummingbird (Calypte anna)? Does it pass close to areas where predators are present, specifically those which prey on eggs?
  • Are neighbourhoods with low socioeconomic status spatially correlated to high morbidity rates?

Many of these questions ask about the spatial relationship between two or more phenomena. This workshop is an introduction to spatial thinking and the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). This workshop assumes attendees have no previous experience with GIS.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • think spatially about their research;
  • understand the elements of GIS;
  • use a leading industry software (ArcGIS);
  • create simple maps using geospatial data;
  • look for and find geospatial data and resources.

Software: ArcGIS Online, ArcGIS Desktop 10.6 (participants will not need their own computer)

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - 2:30pm to 4:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Lab 2105

Advanced GIS: Raster Data Analysis

Raster data is continuous, pixelated data. For example, aerial photographs, LIDAR data, and digital elevation models store information as raster data. In contrast, vector data is discrete and is stored as geometric objects: points, lines and polygons. The tools available to you, and the kind of analysis you can conduct, with raster data are different than those for vector data. This session will focus on working with raster data in ArcGIS.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • distinguish between different types of raster data;
  • work with digital elevation models (DEMs);
  • explore raster surface data (hill shade, contour, aspect data);
  • create and work with mosaic datasets.

Software: ArcGIS Desktop 10.6 (participants will not need their own computer)

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, October 10, 2018 - 2:30pm to 4:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Lab 2105

Advanced GIS: Vector and Tabular Data Analysis

Vector data is discrete data stored in points, lines and polygons. The tools at your disposal and the kind of analysis you can conduct with this type of data is different than those for raster data. This workshop will deepen your knowledge of attribute tables that accompany vector data. You will learn to add new data in an existing table, import data from an Excel worksheet, join two tables together, convert a list of X-Y coordinates to a shapefile, and create simple SQL-queries.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • edit and add information to an attribute table;
  • import Excel tables and X-Y coordinates into ArcMap;
  • formulate queries;
  • join data from two separate sources;
  • and, explore spatial patterns in data.

Software: ArcGIS Desktop 10.6 (participants will not need their own computer)

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, October 18, 2018 - 2:30pm to 4:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Lab 2105

Mapping Census Data

This workshop will cover two very practical skill areas for ArcGIS users:

  • finding Canadian Census data that is accessible to university researchers,
  • and mapping it using ArcGIS software.

This workshop will guide you through tips for mapping large amounts of census data quickly and for working with spatial patterns and relationships among census variables.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • find and choose Census data required for their research;
  • extract relevant Census data from Census files;
  • understand the census spatial units;
  • and, map census data using census spatial units.

Software: ArcGIS Online, ArcGIS Desktop (participants will not need their own computer)

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, October 25, 2018 - 12:30pm to 2:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Lab 2105

Intro to Geospatial Data with R

The lessons in this workshop will cover how to open, work with, and plot vector and raster-format spatial data in R.

Additional topics include:

  • working with spatial metadata (extent and coordinate reference systems),
  • reprojecting spatial data,
  • and working with raster time series data.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • import and export raster and vector data from R;
  • analyze and edit raster and vector data;
  • explore spatio-temporal data in R.

This full-day workshop will follow the Data Carpentries' syllabus.

Prerequisites:

Software requirements:

  • Participants will need to bring their own laptops with the most recent version of R and Rstudio installed. For installation instructions and to download the data used in this lesson, see the workshop homepage.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - 9:00am to 5:00pm Harbour Centre, Rm 1415

Python

Introduction to Python

Python is a popular language for scientific computing, and great for general-purpose programming as well. In fact, almost everyone who uses Python likes it so much they get upset about having to learn any other programming language.  This hands-on workshop will cover basic concepts and tools, including program design, version control, data management, and task automation. This workshop uses curricula from Software Carpentry, whose mission is to help researchers get more work done in less time and with less pain by teaching them basic lab skills for scientific computing.  It also provides a good technical basis for the two-day GIS workshop which will follow, which is an introduction to automated geoprocessing using Python to perform analysis with ArcGIS. Given this, you might be able to do St. Patrick one better, and with the power of Python, drive the snakes back into Ireland!

Software requirements:

Participants will need to bring their own computer. Instructions on installing Python and other necessary information will be sent out to participants closer to the workshop date.

Prerequisite:

This workshop is designed for people with no background in Python.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, September 25, 2018 - 9:30am to 4:30pm Burnaby, SFU's Big Data Hub (Applied Science Building - Flexible Meeting Room ASB 10908)

Geoprocessing in ArcGIS

The analysis of place-based (or spatial) data requires a basic understanding of how to process the data. For example, what are the routes taken by Anna’s hummingbird (Calypte anna) during winter migration and where do their routes overlap with predator territory? If we have data on the locations of Anna’s hummingbird and their predators, we could process their network (or routes) and then analyze the overlap with predator territory.

Researchers in various disciplines will find this workshop helpful as an introduction to basic geoprocessing tools and workflow automation in ArcGIS. In this workshop, participants will learn to run basic and advanced geoprocessing tools using Python and an automated workflow process tool called Model Builder. During the workshop, participants will:

  • explore different data formats that work with ArcGIS;
  • use tools to their full extent in ArcMap;
  • learn about kernel density analysis;
  • automate geoprocessing tools; and
  • use Python in IDLE and in ArcMap.

Software requirements:

Participants will need to bring their own computer, running the Windows operating system. This workshop requires the use of ArcGIS Desktop, which is available for download and can be installed on Windows operating systems only. Instructions on installing ArcGIS Desktop and other necessary information will be sent out to participants closer to the workshop date.

Prerequisite:

This workshop assumes prerequisite knowledge of the Introduction to Python (Day 1) material or its equivalent. Please contact data-services@sfu.ca if you are not planning to attend Day 1 and would like clarification on the prerequisites.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, September 26, 2018 - 9:30am to 4:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Geoprocessing in ArcGIS with Python

Researchers often have to analyze many individual datasets separately using the same process. For example, maybe you need to convert 100 CSV files into shapefiles and create buffers with increasing increments around them, in each one. Sometimes even working spatial analysts don’t have access to premade tools that can run this analysis; in which case, they need to create the tool themselves to automate most of this processing.

Almost all uses of GIS involve a repetition of work, and this creates the need for methods to automate, document, and share multiple-step procedures known as workflows. Geoprocessing allows you to automate your GIS tasks and perform spatial analysis and modeling. This workshop will guide participants in the creation of custom geoprocessing tools in ArcGIS using Python. At the end of the workshop, participants will be able to:

  • create a geoprocessing workflow in ArcGIS Model Builder;
  • create a geoprocessing workflow using Python code;
  • run basic geoprocessing and shapefile editing tools using Python code; and
  • code a single tool that can be used in ArcMap to run the entire workflow.

Software requirements:

Participants will need to bring their own computer, running the Windows operating system. This workshop requires the use of ArcGIS Desktop and Python. ArcGIS Desktop is available for download and can be installed on Windows operating systems only. Instructions on installing ArcGIS Desktop and other necessary information will be sent out to participants closer to the workshop date.

Prerequisite:

This workshop assumes prerequisite knowledge of the Introduction to Python (Day 1) and Geoprocessing in ArcGIS (Day 2) materials or their equivalent. Please contact data-services@sfu.ca if you are not planning to attend Day 1 or Day 2, and would like clarification on the prerequisites.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, September 27, 2018 - 9:30am to 4:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Qualitative Data Analysis

The Nuts and Bolts of NVivo for Windows

NVivo is a qualitative data analysis software program, but what does that mean -- and what does it mean for your research? Find out what NVivo is, when to use it, and how to get started.

In this hands-on introductory workshop, you'll take a tour of the NVivo software environment, using sample data. You’ll be introduced to NVivo’s functions and you’ll leave equipped with the basic info you need to begin working with NVivo. Topics introduced may include importing files and beginning coding.

This workshop is suitable for those with little or no experience using NVivo or other qualitative data analysis software.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, September 21, 2018 - 9:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Lab 4009

The Nuts and Bolts of NVivo for Mac

NVivo is a qualitative data analysis software program, but what does that mean -- and what does it mean for your research? Find out what NVivo is, when to use it, and how to get started.

In this hands-on introductory workshop, you'll take a tour of the NVivo software environment, using sample data. You’ll be introduced to NVivo’s functions and you’ll leave equipped with the basic info you need to begin working with NVivo. Topics introduced may include importing files and beginning coding.

This workshop is suitable for those with little or no experience using NVivo or other qualitative data analysis software.

Notes:
1. This workshop is for NVivo for Mac. The Windows interface is significantly different. Please check here for NVivo for Windows workshops being offered.
2. Please bring your own Mac laptop preloaded with the latest version of NVivo. You can download NVivo and the license key with your SFU computing ID by using the self-serve download link here. If you are unable to get past the authentication page, then please email nvivo-rc@sfu.ca.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, September 28, 2018 - 9:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Doing More with NVivo for Windows

Need help moving forward with your qualitative data analysis? If you've had some experience with bringing in documents and coding them, you’re ready to move on to analyzing your material. In this hands-on workshop, Graduate Peer NVivo Facilitators will walk you through visualizations and queries using sample data and may be able to address other topics depending on the needs of the group.

This workshop is suitable for those who have some experience with NVivo or who have already taken the Nuts and Bolts of NVivo workshop.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - 9:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Lab 4009

Doing More with NVivo for Mac

Need help moving forward with your qualitative data analysis? If you've had some experience with bringing in documents and coding them, you’re ready to move on to analyzing your material. In this hands-on workshop, Graduate Peer NVivo Facilitators will walk you through the visualizations and queries that are available in NVivo for Mac and may be able to address other topics depending on the needs of the group.
 
This workshop is suitable for those who have some experience with NVivo or who have already taken the Nuts and Bolts of NVivo workshop.
 
This is a BYOL workshop: Bring Your Own Laptop, with the latest version of NVivo for Mac installed on it.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, November 7, 2018 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Making Literature Reviews a Breeze (almost) with NVivo for Mac

This interactive workshop introduces importing and coding of literature review materials and key tools that can be particularly helpful when reviewing literature in your area of research.

Topics covered include: introducing NVivo and setting up a project working with your information identifying themes, topics and ideas and collecting data to support them using tools such as text search query, matrix coding query, and Framework Matrix.

What will you achieve from this course? At the end of this, you will have the knowledge to set up a literature review in NVivo, and begin to work with your information. You will also be able to use NVivo to organize your content and begin to identify themes, topics or ideas.

It is appropriate for those who have had some experience with NVivo or who have taken the Nuts and Bolts of NVivo workshop. For more information about NVivo at SFU, please visit NVivo Software for Research Analysis.

Participants should also have some familiarity with citation management software (Zotero, Mendeley, Refworks, EndNote, etc).

Note: You will need to bring your own Mac laptop, loaded with the latest version of NVivo for Mac.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, November 21, 2018 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

R (Software)

Text Mining in R

Text mining techniques can be applied to various data sources (e.g., newspaper articles, emails, online discussion posts, etc.) to efficiently extract useful data for different research purposes. For example, health science researchers may be interested in investigating a frequency of a particular disease name mentioned in a large set of newspaper articles. Educational researchers, on the other side, may wish to extract and categorize students' opinions from discussion forum in a high enrollment course. R offers a comprehensive set of functionalities for text mining. In this workshop, you will learn how to implement basic methods for preprocessing textual data, metadata management, a creation of term-document matrices over the collection of textual documents, sentiment analysis, text tokenization, word relationship extraction and text visualization.

Note: Workshop participants will need to bring their own laptops, with R and RStudio installed prior to attending the workshop.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, October 11, 2018 - 10:00am to 4:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

10 Principles of Reproducible Research: The Hands-on R Edition

Do you spend too much time re-running analyses? Did you ever have trouble regenerating a figure or result from a previous analysis? This session is for you!

In this workshop, we will explore 10 principles that you can follow to elevate your research to the next level in terms of reproducibility. Equipped with these principles, you and others will spend less time re-running your analyses. We will apply these principles in real time to a toy R project that we will start from scratch. Topics will include R, RStudio, Git/GitHub, R Markdown/Notebooks, Conda/Bioconda, and open research.

Prerequisite Knowledge:

In order to get the most out of the hands-on demos, you need to be familiar with R. That being said, the principles are certainly generalizable to other programming languages like Python, so you can still join us to learn the concepts.

Software Requirements:

Create a GitHub.com account if you don't already have one. If you already have one, confirm that you can log in.

Please have a recent version of R installed (version 3.1.2 or later). You can check your R version by running "R.version.string" at the R console. Install the tidyverse, knitr and rmarkdown R packages using the following command:

install.packages(c("tidyverse", "knitr", "rmarkdown"))

Optional: Install Miniconda to follow along one of the hands-on demos, but it is not strictly necessary. Windows users would also benefit from installing Git for Windows.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, November 6, 2018 - 9:30am to 12:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 3008

Statistics

Introduction to Health Statistics

This presentation covers health related statistics including:

  • CCHS- annual component and mental health,
  • Canadian Survey of Disability,
  • Aboriginal Peoples Survey,
  • vital statistics,
  • CHMS,
  • Canadian Cancer Registry,
  • General Social Survey- Caregiving & Care Receiving,
  • Census of Population.

We will also talk about data dissemination (aggregate data and microdata/PUMF).

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, October 25, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Introduction to Business Statistics

The first part of the presentation covers various resources related to business statistics, ie,  retail, wholesale, import & export, Canadian business counts, household spending, financial statistics, and 2016 Census results on population, demography, income, education and labour force status. The second part of the presentation would be a website navigation on how to find those resources on our website, then wrap up by a Q & A.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, November 22, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Visual Analytics

Next semester's workshops will be posted soon.

Scholarly communication

What's Your Impact?: An Introduction to Measuring the Impact of Your Research Within and Beyond the Academy

Who is looking at your research and how can you measure it? Find out more about research impact – what it is, how to measure it and how to leverage it. This session will help you:

  • understand what is meant by research impact,
  • become familiar with the different types of research impact metrics,
  • know the tools available to calculate research impact.
  • and devise a strategy to increase the impact of your own research activities.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, September 18, 2018 - 1:30pm to 3:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Get credit for your work: Build a sustainable online CV with ORCID

  • Are you looking to reduce the amount of manual data entry required when you submit a manuscript, apply for a grant, or update your CV?
  • Are you tired of receiving emails from online networking sites, asking you to pay for premium services?
  • Do you want to ensure that you get credit for all of your work?

Then this workshop is for you.

We will introduce ORCID (the Open Researcher and Contributor ID), a free, open, not-for-profit organization that provides authors with a unique numeric identifier to distinguish themselves from other researchers and automatically link their professional publications and activities. ORCID iDs persist throughout an author's scholarly career and ensure consistent, reliable attribution of their work.

Bring your laptop and a copy of your CV: this interactive workshop will cover the basics and benefits of getting started with ORCID.

Participants will leave with:

  • an ORCID iD,
  • a newly created online CV,
  • and an understanding of how to automatically keep their profile up-to-date.
 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, October 3, 2018 - 11:30am to 1:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons
Tuesday, November 6, 2018 - 10:30am to 12:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Preparing to Publish

Graduate students are always encouraged to publish but often without really knowing what that means or how to start. This workshop will focus on navigating the peer review process and will also touch on the topics of open access, working with an editor, and co-authorship.  It will include a discussion of copyright transfer agreements and licenses and provide insight into publishing venues for assuring your research has the best possible visibility, accessibility, and impact.

A few questions this session will help to answer:

  • How does the publishing cycle work?
  • How can you assess potential publishing venues?
  • What is peer review and how can you respond to reviewer comments?
  • What rights can you retain to your published research?
  • What are predatory publishers and how can you avoid them?

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, October 24, 2018 - 10:30am to 12:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Writing

Graduate Open Writing Lab: Write Time, Write Space (drop-in)

The Graduate Open Writing Lab is for all graduate students who want the time and a quiet, dedicated space to work on their writing. A Graduate Writing Facilitator will be available for consultations and to answer questions.

Registration not required - please drop in!

Summer Semester 2018 - [May 7 to August 3]

Burnaby Campus
Graduate Open Writing Lab (Facilitated) - Mondays, 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm, SFU Burnaby, W.A.C. Bennett Library, Research Commons, Rm 7010

Vancouver Campus
Graduate Open Writing Lab (Facilitated) - Fridays, 11:30 am to 2:30 pm, SFU Vancouver, Harbour Centre - Room 7356

Upcoming Workshops

Please register for the following writing workshops:

Thesis Boot Camp

This multi-day boot camp is for SFU graduate students at both the PhD and Masters level, who are currently writing their thesis or dissertation.

Here's your opportunity to dedicate three days to making serious progress on your dissertation or master’s thesis. Along with a comfortable, quiet working environment, snacks and lunches, you will benefit from structured time, dedicated space, professional advising and peer support—all motivating factors in that final push towards completion of your dissertation or thesis.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, August 21, 2018 - 8:30am to 5:00pm
Wednesday, August 22, 2018 - 8:30am to 5:00pm
Thursday, August 23, 2018 - 8:30am to 5:00pm
Surrey, Galleria 5, Rm 5140

Revising without Procrastination

Is your revision process slowing you down? Do you find it hard to generate new pages until the old ones are "perfect"? Sometimes too much revision becomes a form of procrastination. Through free-writing, interactive exercises, and discussions, participants learn more about balancing the complementary requirements of creation and revision and take away practical strategies to revise productively. . .without getting stuck!

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, August 21, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:15am Surrey, Galleria 5, Rm 5100

What's in a Paragraph? Improving Transitions, Paraphrasing and Thematic Progression

We know that most paragraphs should contain certain elements, but do we know how to focus on and improve those individual elements?

In this workshop, participants will “zoom-in” to examine and practice how to create a paragraph with a single and concise academic point. To do this, suggestions for improving transitions, paraphrasing, and thematic progression will be provided and discussed.

 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, August 23, 2018 - 9:15am to 10:15am Surrey, Galleria 5, Rm 5100

Write Conversations: Finding Your Voice

Academic writing can be more than boring readers and emulating stuffy styles. In fact, expressing complex ideas in your own voice can be one of the best ways to make your work stand out. Join us for a conversation on conformity, creativity, and originality and begin your journey toward discovering your academic voice.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, September 10, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons
Friday, September 21, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Harbour Centre, Rm 7400

Write Right: Expectations and the Writing Process for Graduate Students (condensed version)

Writing in graduate school can be a challenging and confusing prospect. This evening workshop has been developed for graduate students to learn more about the expectations of graduate writing at SFU as well as the writing process.

The workshop will include discussions on: 

  • making time for writing,
  • the writing process,
  • strategies for writing,
  • and the revision process.

Participants will also learn how to consider:

  • transitions,
  • outlining,
  • synthesizing,
  • and audience.

Participants can bring an example of a future writing assignment to add to the discussion. If you are looking to take your writing to the next level, then this workshop is for you!

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, September 13, 2018 - 5:00pm to 8:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

Write Conversations: Writing as Practice and Process

This workshop will begin with a discussion on writing as process and then explore goal setting and outlining. Following this this workshop is the Graduate Open Writing Lab; you are welcome to stay and work on your writing.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, September 14, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Harbour Centre, Rm 7400

Write Conversations: I speak Science, don't you? Communicating your Scientific Research

This write conversations session is an informal dialogue about scientific communication with different types of audiences. Being able to communicate your research and work to a variety of different audiences will help disseminate your work widely. This session will explore the different types of audience, how communication to each of them is different, and why it needs to be different.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, September 17, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Write Conversations: Creative Writers' Workshop

Journal articles, conference papers, and books aren't the only platforms for the expression of academic knowledge. In fact, creative writing about big and complex ideas and can be a valuable way to reach beyond academia and explore new perspectives. This workshop presents a constructive space to share your creative work and to listen to the work from across the disciplines. Feel free to bring pieces of poetry, fiction, or creative non-fiction to share with other participants, or come ready to freewrite during the workshop. The format is pretty loose, so you can determine which activities will be most useful.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, September 24, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Write Conversations: Critical Research, Reading, and Writing

This workshop will begin with a discussion of strategies for critical reading and note-taking and then explore how these skills contribute to critical writing for a literature review. Following this workshop is the Graduate Open Writing Lab; you are welcome to stay and work on your writing.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, September 28, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Harbour Centre, Rm 7400

Write Conversations: Lay Language

Lay language is needed in order to convey technical and advanced ideas in ways that are more effective than “dumbing it down”. You may be preparing a grant or fellowship proposal, writing for online purposes or fine tuning your “job talk”— all of which require you to translate your work and research to persons outside of your core field of study.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, October 1, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Write Conversations: Academic Writing? What’s that?

This write conversations session is an informal dialogue about how academic writing is different from other types of writing (e.g., magazines, newspapers, proposals and technical reports). Topics on understanding your field and scholar-based audiences will be discussed as well.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, October 5, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

SSHRC Doctoral Proposal Writing

In the first half of this workshop, participants will learn about the application process and requirements, eligibility mistakes, evaluation criteria, tips and tricks for your bibliography and citation as well as common mistakes to avoid.

In the latter half of the workshop, participants will learn how proposal writing differs from other types of graduate writing.  A facilitator will review some of the basic elements of proposal writing and how to make a persuasive argument to your readers. They will help you think about:

 

  • your audience and the needs of your audience,
  • the critical messages that you want to convey,
  • and finding an engaging hook.

Participants should bring their in-progress proposals and any other supporting material they would like to work on. Light refreshments will be served.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, October 10, 2018 - 1:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

Write Conversations: Dressing Up (or Down) Your Writing: Audience, Purpose, and Style

This workshop will begin with a discussion about the need to consider audience, purpose, and style in writing. We will then explore “style,” including word choice, sentence structure, tone, and voice, and how these aspects impact your writing. Following this workshop is the Graduate Open Writing Lab; you are welcome to stay and work on your writing.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, October 12, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Harbour Centre, Rm 7400

Write Conversations: What's Your Research Question?

It is important to know what your research question is prior to writing your dissertation. Fully understanding what THE question is will help you make conceptual links and focus your reading and research.  How does one come up with a research question? What is a good research question?  Is the research question same thing as a hypothesis?  Join this Write Conversations session to find out.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, October 15, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Writing a Winning Business Plan

What is a business plan? What is its purpose? What sections do I need? What elements are key to an effective executive summary?  This workshop is designed for anyone with little to no experience with writing an effective and persuasive business plan.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, October 22, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Preparing to Publish

Graduate students are always encouraged to publish but often without really knowing what that means or how to start. This workshop will focus on navigating the peer review process and will also touch on the topics of open access, working with an editor, and co-authorship.  It will include a discussion of copyright transfer agreements and licenses and provide insight into publishing venues for assuring your research has the best possible visibility, accessibility, and impact.

A few questions this session will help to answer:

  • How does the publishing cycle work?
  • How can you assess potential publishing venues?
  • What is peer review and how can you respond to reviewer comments?
  • What rights can you retain to your published research?
  • What are predatory publishers and how can you avoid them?

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, October 24, 2018 - 10:30am to 12:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Write Conversations: Going with the Flow: Cohesion and Coherence

This workshop will begin with a discussion focused on how we can communicate the logical progression of our ideas. We will explore a number of ways to develop a clear, compelling, and logical argument from the beginning, through the middle, to the end of a piece of scholarly writing. Following this workshop is the Graduate Open Writing Lab; you are welcome to stay and work on your writing.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, October 26, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Harbour Centre, Rm 7400

Write Conversations: Presenting with E.A.S.E. - Oral Presentations

Are you presenting to a scholarly audience at a conference in a room with 300 or more people? Maybe, you'll be presenting in a seminar, a workshop or to your colleagues? There are best practices for making your presentation Engaging, Actionable, Simple and Entertaining. Sign up for this workshop and learn some presentation skills from a 2013 TEDx speaker.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, October 29, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Critical Thinking for Critical Writing

Critical writing depends on critical thinking. However, we often get caught up in reading sources solely for content or information, neglecting critical reflection on authors’ reasoning, style, and argumentation, which then prevents our writing from being as critical or analytical as it should be. This workshop will help graduate writers rethink how to approach sources and their own writing for successfully engaging in academic discourse!

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, October 30, 2018 - 12:30pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

Write Conversations: The Work We Do After the Work We Did: Editing, Revising, and Proofreading

This workshop will begin with a discussion on the differences between revising, editing, and proofreading as well as their importance in the writing process. We will explore a number of revising, editing, and proofreading techniques employed by successful writers. Following this workshop is the Graduate Open Writing Lab; you are welcome to stay and work on your writing.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, November 9, 2018 - 10:30am to 11:30am Harbour Centre, Rm 7400

Write Conversations: Writing for Collaboration in the Sciences

This write conversations session is an informal dialogue about writing styles, specifically for the purpose of creating collaborative relationships between scientists. Laboratory research depends on collaborative ideas and technologies to make advances. This session will focus on writing styles for letters, proposals, and emails to potential collaborators both in academia and industry.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, November 26, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7010, Research Commons

Thesis

Thesis Boot Camp

This multi-day boot camp is for SFU graduate students at both the PhD and Masters level, who are currently writing their thesis or dissertation.

Here's your opportunity to dedicate three days to making serious progress on your dissertation or master’s thesis. Along with a comfortable, quiet working environment, snacks and lunches, you will benefit from structured time, dedicated space, professional advising and peer support—all motivating factors in that final push towards completion of your dissertation or thesis.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, August 21, 2018 - 8:30am to 5:00pm
Wednesday, August 22, 2018 - 8:30am to 5:00pm
Thursday, August 23, 2018 - 8:30am to 5:00pm
Surrey, Galleria 5, Rm 5140

Thesis Template and Resources

This demonstration introduces you to the Thesis Submission process and the Thesis Template. It will begin with an introduction to required copyright permissions from the Copyright Office at SFU, followed by a review of the overall submission process (including deadlines and supporting documentation). Additionally, SFU Library's research data specialists will give instruction on how to preserve and, if appropriate, share research data for future uses.

The technical part of the workshop will follow, where you will be walked through the resources on the website and the functionality of the thesis template.

Students are encouraged to bring their own computer and thesis document(s) to work along with the facilitator during the workshop.

Learn how to:

  • request copyright permissions
  • write in the MS Word template-based file
  • format your text using styles
  • bring text in from other documents
  • insert figures, images, and auto-numbered captions
  • generate the Table of Contents, List of Tables, List of Figures, etc.

If you’ve begun writing, send your document to theses@sfu.ca in advance of the workshop; one might be used in demonstrating the Library’s thesis template. After the session, the formatted document will be returned in which the student can continue his/her work.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, August 21, 2018 - 1:00pm to 2:00pm Surrey, Galleria 5, Rm 5100