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Workshops & training

My goal for all workshop participants is that they identify their individual writing challenges, learn strategies for overcoming them, and become more independent and productive writers. These are the goals I've helped PhD students, postdocs, junior professors, and staff at the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, the Ludwig Boltzmann Gesellschaft in Vienna, and TH Köln achieve.

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The Ludwig Boltzmann Gesellschaft Winter School 2022

I work with leading researchers who are experts in their field but who struggle to express their research in writing. I want workshop participants to leave with a text that is better structured and has a clearer focus and argument, and with a strategy for how to improve it. Ideally, I want participants to leave with a healthier approach to writing, one that is less anxiety inducing and more productive. I want them to walk away with strategies for identifying what's not working in their text and how to improve it themselves. To me, a workshop is about working, not passively listening. In every workshop, I always request time for individual writing-coaching sessions, because each researcher has unique writing challenges, and needs different tools and advice to keep moving forward. I believe this approach is one that leads to the greatest improvements in academic writing.

Feedback from past workshop participants

Winter School 2022

Ludwig Boltzmann Gesellschaft

“Marc was fantastic on so many levels! Especially during the 1:1 session, where he helped me set up an adequate strategy for writing my paper and gave me specific advice for structuring my arguments.”

Winter School 2021

Ludwig Boltzmann Gesellschaft

“The virtual exchanges with Marc were great because he gave interesting inputs and the exchange showed that we all face the same challenges while writing...The 1:1 writing coachings were really great and so instructive. It was great to have the possibility to talk about the own example and text. He is so fast in getting to the point and understanding the ideas behind the text. That´s really impressive. Would love to work with him in the future (if there is any possibility to receive funding for that - over university or work).”

Academic Writing Style Workshop

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München

“We discussed my text as well as how best to communicate with peer reviewed journals reviewers and then discussed the two more specific questions I asked. After the session, Mark gave me my text with his suggestions for improvement and further guidance...I liked the coaching so much that I am very eager to consult with Mark Abernathy on other texts...If I had to pick one word for feedback, it would be the word: energising.”

My approach to feedback

I take feedback from my workshops very seriously. In 2020, I received the following comment from a participant in the LMU workshop: “Here I would like to note that there were, however, far too many slides and examples per problem area - I think you would have understood very well what the key content to be absorbed was even after two examples. Also, it wasn’t quite ideal for time management - even though we finished on time, it was an unusual mix of way too many slides at one point and hurrying at another.” I took this comment to heart and in my next workshop significantly reduced the number of slides I used, modified the content and examples, and made an effort to allot a balanced amount of time for all workshop elements and examples.

 

One LBG Winter School 2021 participant wrote that my input sessions could be better structured and that “sometimes a bit more time would have been needed to discuss all the aspects that had been brought up during the rather short sessions.” I took these comments seriously as well and worked on aligning my workshop content for LBG Winter School 2022 with the time allotted. The
result of this approach to feedback was a 100% rating from all 12 participants who gave me feedback on the 2022 Winter School.

Below are some highlights from my recent workshops

Let me design a workshop to help your research group or department get published and funded.

What do you want participants to have improved by the end of the workshop? (Choose all that apply)

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Who is Marc Abernathy?

Learn more about me and my experience helping researchers like you

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