UCD SMARTlab PhD students David, Nigel, Will, Taey, Rama, Sapna and Ron were supported by Dr Chris Hales, Dr Camille Baker and Prof. Lizbeth Goodman at a writing retreat hosted by the Centre for Creative Collaboration in London. Students were given the opportunity to put time aside to focus on substantial writing focused entirely on their personal PhD work.
The aim of the retreat was to leave with a substantial amount of high-quality new writing, or vastly improved old writing, of a good enough level to include directly in the finished PhD, and to come away with greater confidence overall in the production of academic texts.
Student objectives included:
- producing writing towards their own personal PhD text without the regular distractions of daily working and personal activities;
- having a member of SMARTlab supervisory staff (who probably will not be on their supervision team) to read and comment on their written text;
- having fellow students read and comment on their text;
- improving the accuracy, clarity and overall quality of academic writing by receiving feedback from staff and other students; and
- discussing and comparing notes on the use of various writing techniques and software (e.g. Endnote, Zotero) with other students.