Dr. Michelle McGinn in an extension of her role as the Associate Dean of Research and International Initiatives led a workshop on helping research assistants deepen their engagement with the research process, improve their skillset as well as improve their marketability. The workshop began with a reflective exercise to determine what each attendee knew, wanted to know, and had learned.
Those present participated in case studies, interactive discussions and collaborative activities to explore some common dilemmas, challenges and opportunities often faced by research assistants. The groups then nominated one member to present their group findings.
Being a research assistant, I found the workshop extremely helpful. Some common themes included discussions of what research assistants do, what are the benefits of being a research assistant and what skills do I need to have? Students also participated in a mini-workshop on transferable skills.
The findings of the workshop are being implemented in the creation and continued action research to improve a Handbook for Research assistants. The handbook can be found here.
A worthy read for any and all aspiring research assistants, current researcher, or those contemplating a career in academia.
The workshop was a part of Career Corner, a joint-initiative of Congress 2014 and Brock University.