Unlike the CommKit which contains guides written by Comm Fellows, the following posts are a collection of voices from in and around NSE about communicating in academia. If you’d like to suggest topics or contribute your own post, please email Marina Dang (dangm@mit.edu).


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Participate in MIT’s 2nd Annual Research Slam!

Looking to build your research communication skills? Excited to compete for hundreds of dollars in prizes? Participate in MIT’s 2nd Annual Research Slam and Three Minute Thesis (3MTTM) competition! And spread the word to friends and labmates! Perks of participating Hundreds of dollars in prizes. The winner gets $600, the runner-up gets $300, and the… View Article

What Is Your (Statement of) Purpose?

“When I was 8, my mother bought me a science encyclopedia, which opened my mind to the wonders of the universe. This fueled my passion for physics and engineering and has motivated me to apply to the Nuclear Science and Engineering department at MIT.” Grad school admissions committees have read countless stories like this in… View Article

How Do We “Trigger” Effective Communication?

The concept of a threshold or trigger is common in engineering. Once a variable exceeds a particular value, another response variable changes rapidly. Signal strength as a function of applied voltage, semiconductor optical response as a function of photon energy… With experience, an experimentalist will know with confidence at which level of the independent variable,… View Article

Code-Talk for Any Audience

Gone are the days when obscure, hour-long PowerPoints filled with complicated math results derived alone can win awards. The modern engineer must be communicative, creative, and collaborative to be successful. As a graduate student in neutronics, this can be especially challenging. My publications often center on subtle approximations to the neutron transport equation and their… View Article

Writing Strategies from NSE PHinisheD

“Just write, sleep, write, sleep, etc.” Such is the life of one thesis writer hoping to defend soon. He is also one of the dozen members of NSE PHinisheD, a community of graduate students who are months away from receiving their doctoral degrees. Together and under my lead, they’ve discussed deadlines, examples of thesis outlines,… View Article

Here to Help

People often joke that MIT made a “mistake” letting them in—a small sign of the widespread imposter syndrome among students. I first arrived in 2015 as an undergrad and I’m now a Master’s student, so I’ve had two opportunities to make this joke! Many of us feel the need to prove that MIT didn’t make… View Article

Questions to Bring to Your Faculty Interview

Despite the pandemic, many institutions are moving forward with their faculty hiring, and selected candidates are now preparing for their interviews in earnest. If you’re one of those candidates, congratulations on making it to the next round! As you polish your seminar presentation and anticipate questions that may get thrown at you, make sure you… View Article

Three Tips for Your Grad School Personal Statement

Getting into graduate school requires more than an outstanding GPA and rock-solid letters of recommendation. Whenever I meet with clients to work on their grad school personal statements, I make sure that we cover these three best practices: Robbie Stewart is a PhD graduate student working with Prof. Koroush Shirvan. He is also a Communication… View Article

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