Annual graduate student forum
highlights innovative research
Graduate students from across the University of Delaware came together to share their research at the third annual Graduate Student Forum on Friday, May 10. Photo by Duane Perry
Now in its third year, the Graduate Student Forum provides a
valuable opportunity for students across the UD campus to share
their research with colleagues and peers.
"The importance of knowing how to convey your research to
broad audiences can't be overestimated," noted Vice Provost for
Research Charlie Riordan at the inaugural forum in 2011. "It will
serve you in communicating your work to family members to
funding agencies, school districts and the community at large."
This year's event featured more than 50 presentations organized
into panels as well as 20-plus posters, with topics ranging from
high-performance composite resins, to mental health screening in
public housing, to public perception and decision-making during
"The Grad Forum is such an important event for graduate students
because it allows us to highlight our research, share our findings in
an interdisciplinary forum and get practice for presenting at other
conferences," said Emily Bonistall, past president of UD's Graduate Student Government. "It's also a fantastic social event where
students get to meet new people, enjoy a reception and have a
chance to win fabulous raffle prizes. All around, the day was
wonderful, and I look forward to seeing the event continue to grow."
New graduate teaching assistants participate in a concurrent session on Teaching in the Social Sciences and Humanities this summer. Photo by Lane McLaughlin
Graduate teaching assistants (TAs) contribute significantly to the teaching mission
of most research institutions, and the University of Delaware is no exception. UD's
annual conference for graduate teaching assistants introduces newly appointed TAs
to UD's teaching community and provides a supportive forum to help TAs transition
into their teaching roles and responsibilities. Over 200 new TAs attended this year's
conference, representing 26 academic programs across UD.
An integral part of the TA conference are the TA fellows who lead concurrent
sessions, as well as faculty and staff from academic programs across the university
who volunteer their time to share their expertise on such topics as enhancing
learning through technology, engaging students through active learning and
effective classroom communication. The TA fellows are senior TAs who reflect on their
teaching experiences at UD, providing strategies for enhancing student learning and
becoming an effective teaching assistant. Topics at the 2013 conference included:
Engaging Students and Making Learning Fun
Teaching Challenges and Surprises: How Might We Respond?
Enhancing Learning, Organization and Communication via Technology
Seven Ways A Librarian Can Make your Life Easier
Giving Feedback on Students' Written Work
A Practical Approach to Diversity in the Classroom
In addition, newly appointed international TAs participate in a four-week International Teaching Assistant (ITA) training program conducted by the University's English Language
Institute (ELI). The program is designed to help prepare new
international TAs for their responsibilities, with special instruction in speaking and
listening skills for the classroom as well as a cultural and pedagogical orientation to
the U.S. college environment and the University of Delaware in particular.
Ken Hyde is ELI's program director for ITA. "We are extremely pleased with the role
the ITA program has played for the last 27 years in preparing UD's international
graduate TAs to be valuable contributors to their departments, and to their students
as teachers and mentors," commented Hyde. "When we get positive feedback from
those graduate students, it gives us a sense of pride in helping them toward their goals."
ELI's pre-MBA program includes
training in case study analysis and critical
reading and writing skills required for
MBA programs; exposure to economics,
management and finance vocabulary and
concepts; and workshops and lectures by
entrepreneurs and MBA faculty.
"We have been able to admit a much
larger population of future international
MBA students through the collaboration
with ELI," said Denise Waters, assistant
director of recruitment and admissions
for graduate and executive programs in
the Lerner College. "We often find that
applicants who would otherwise be
qualified for admission are lacking only in
English language skills, so it is a win-win if
we are able to offer them the opportunity
to study in the ELI pre-MBA program prior
to becoming matriculated MBA students."
One such student is Dawei Wang, a full-time
MBA student from China pursuing a
concentration in accounting. "From my
point of view, the academic writing and
presentation skills I learned from ELI
benefitted me a lot, for they built a sound
foundation for graduate study," said Wang.
"The entrepreneur class was very helpful
because it is extremely similar to several
business courses at UD, which gave me a
well-rounded preparation in advance."
The University of Delaware Library
launched a new Article DELivery Service this
year, available to UD faculty and graduate
students. Provided through UD's interlibrary
journal articles and book chapters from the
Library's print and microform collections,
and are delivered electronically to users' ILL
accounts. Service are typically delivered
within two business days, at no charge.