Workshops

  • At the Centre for Academic Development, we offer a wide range of online workshops to help you reach your full potential. 

    If you are a new student planning to start in September, you may be interested to know that we will be offering sessions before you arrive to prepare you for university life, which are detailed below. There is no need to book these; just visit this page on the day of the session and click on the Zoom link for the session you wish to attend.

    Once you have started at Brookes and have a student number, you can then book a place on any of the other workshops in this series using the buttons below, which will appear on this page from Monday 13 September.

    All the workshops in this series run for an hour, with an optional extra half hour at the end in which you can raise any questions you may have.


    September

  • Moving from school or college to university brings a changing relationship with staff and teachers. There are lots of development opportunities available and many people who can offer support, but you will need to think about how you can get the most out of what is on offer. In this workshop, we’ll be thinking about the type of support you can expect, who you can turn to for help, and what the best way of approaching people might be.

    • Tuesday 14 September 11.00am-12.30pm. Click on the link below to join the session on the day.

    Join 'Becoming an Independent Learner'

    Going to university in the UK is an exciting opportunity for international students and also brings new challenges. This session will highlight differences between the UK university system and elsewhere and suggest key study skills for students who are studying in the UK for the first time. 

    • Friday 17 September 11.00am-12.30pm. Click on the link below to join the session on the day.

    Join 'Study skills for International Students'

    This session will help you make the most of your university experience, with information on mature student support, and activities exploring learning technology, reading strategies, and building your confidence. By the end of the session, you will have met some interesting new people and developed some great ideas about how to make the most of your first few months at Brookes.

    • Friday 17 September 1.00-2.30pm. Click on the link below to join the session on the day.

            Join 'Getting Started: A Guide for Mature Students.'

    Independent study involves needing to organise your own time more than was probably the case in school or college days. This session explores how to ensure that your medium to long-term planning is effective enough to make your short-term workload manageable. Time management will also reduce stress and give you the chance to have a life that is not all about work.

    • Friday 24 September 3.00-4.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Independent study involves needing to organise your own time more than was probably the case in school or college days. This session explores how to ensure that your medium to long-term planning is effective enough to make your short-term workload manageable. Time management will also reduce stress and give you the chance to have a life that is not all about work.

    • Monday 27 September 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Being an effective student involves developing the skills and qualities you already have and acquiring new ones. This workshop will provide you with the tools to analyse how you can reach your full potential at university and make the most of the developmental opportunities that are available to you. If you are looking for springboard for change, this could be it!

    • Monday 27 September 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    A key skill you will learn at university is how to take control of your independent reading. It is quite common to feel unsure about whether you are finding the right sources, or if you are making the best use of your reading time. This workshop will look at some key skills for deciding which texts will and won’t be useful for you, and getting what you need from them as efficiently as possible.

    • Tuesday 28 September 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Why do we take notes and how can we ensure the notes that we take are useful? This workshop focuses on the importance of effective note-taking when reading and will help you improve your practice and confidence.

    • Thursday 30 September 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

  • October

  • Knowing how paragraphs work is essential in ensuring that your ideas are effectively expressed in your writing. Poor paragraphing can result in really important arguments being hidden among minor details, and can also leave your writing feeling disorganised and not well-focused on the topic. This workshop will help you reach your paragraphing potential!

    • Monday 4 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    When you’re focusing on what you want to say, it can be easy to forget that your reader needs to easily follow and understand your ideas. This one-hour session will show you some simple ways to keep your reader engaged and clear about the points you want to make, allowing your good ideas to stand out and be noticed. 

    • Tuesday 5 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    We really want you to know that the university understands that all new students will have experienced some big interruptions to their learning in the last two years. In this 60-minute workshop, we’ll explore some common concerns that new students might have about the impact of COVID on their education. We want to reassure you and help you start thinking about how you can take action to feel more confident.

    • Wednesday 6 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Independent study involves needing to organise your own time more than was probably the case in school or college days. This session explores how to ensure that your medium to long-term planning is effective enough to make your short-term workload manageable. Time management will also reduce stress and give you the chance to have a life that is not all about work.

    • Wednesday 6 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Have you been given an assignment that you’re not sure how to approach? Perhaps you’ve struggled in the past to understand exactly what you need to write? This session will show you how to use your task instructions and other resources to get a clearer idea of what your lecturers are hoping to see. Perfect for undergraduates or anyone who wants more confidence in this area, this session will last one hour and be followed by a chance for you to ask questions and discuss your specific assignments.

    • Thursday 7 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Using sources in your writing is an important part of academic study. This workshop will introduce and practice the most common ways of incorporating references in your writing and will highlight good habits that will help you avoid plagiarism.

    • Friday 8 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Being an effective student involves developing the skills and qualities you already have and acquiring new ones. This workshop will provide you with the tools to analyse how you can reach your full potential at university and make the most of the developmental opportunities that are available to you. If you are looking for springboard for change, this could be it!

    • Monday 11 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    A key skill you will learn at university is how to take control of your independent reading. It is quite common to feel unsure about whether you are finding the right sources, or if you are making the best use of your reading time. This workshop will look at some key skills for deciding which texts will and won’t be useful for you, and getting what you need from them as efficiently as possible.

    • Tuesday 12 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Clear, effective slides are a highly useful tool for emphasising your key points and helping your audience keep up. In this session, we will discuss some key dos and don’ts of presentation visuals, including both how to create them and how to use them. There will be 30 minutes at the end of the workshop for you to ask questions, or get feedback on your own slides.

    • Tuesday 12 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Using sources in your writing is an important part of academic study. This workshop will introduce and practice the most common ways of incorporating references in your writing and will highlight good habits that will help you avoid plagiarism.

    • Wednesday 13 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Visual information, such as graphs, charts and photographs, is a common feature of text types like reports and portfolios. This session will offer some useful tips and strategies to present visual information in a clear, professional way for your reader to use. Aimed at anyone new to this aspect of academic writing, or wishing to improve, the workshop will be one hour, followed by an optional 30-minute Q&A.

    • Thursday 14 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Why do we take notes and how can we ensure the notes that we take are useful? This workshop focuses on the importance of effective note-taking when reading and will help you improve your practice and confidence.

    • Thursday 14 October 3.30-5.00pm

    Sign up here to join

    Reading and research is an important part of the writing process. At university, your job is not just to repeat what other people have said, but to reach your own conclusions and present your own arguments based on what you have researched. This session explores how good notes can be used to help you find your writing ‘voice.’

    • Tuesday 19 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Clear, effective slides are a highly useful tool for emphasising your key points and helping your audience keep up. In this session, we will discuss some key dos and don’ts of presentation visuals, including both how to create them and how to use them. There will be 30 minutes at the end of the workshop for you to ask questions, or get feedback on your own slides.

    • Tuesday 19 October 2.00-3.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Students are often told that their writing should be more critical, but how do you do this? This workshop explores the value of questions in moving from being descriptive to more critical, and where your own ideas fit in the research process.

    • Tuesday 19 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Students are often told that their writing should be more critical, but how do you do this? This workshop explores the value of questions in moving from being descriptive to more critical, and where your own ideas fit in the research process.

    • Wednesday 20 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Essay tasks come in many different forms, and it may be hard to decide what to include and how to structure your main body. Making a plan based on your instructions will help you to get started, stay on task, and feel more confident that your finished assignment is clear and focused. This session is suitable for undergraduates and any student lacking confidence in their essay planning. It will show you both how to make a plan, and how to use it! The workshop will be one hour, followed by a chance for you to ask questions and start planning your own assignment

    • Thursday 21 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Are you struggling to get your Harvard referencing conventions right? Perhaps you’ve had feedback about your referencing and you’re not sure what you need to fix. This interactive session will focus on the content, formatting and punctuation of referencing, so you know what to include and how. The session will be one hour, followed by an optional 30 minutes for you to ask questions and discuss those tricky sources you’re not sure about. It’s perfect if you’re new to Harvard referencing, or just want to build your confidence.

    • Thursday 21 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Using sources in your writing is an important part of academic study. This workshop will introduce and practice the most common ways of incorporating references in your writing and will highlight good habits that will help you avoid plagiarism.

    • Friday 22 October 10.00-11.30am

    Sign up here to join

    Being an effective student involves developing the skills and qualities you already have and acquiring new ones. This workshop will provide you with the tools to analyse how you can reach your full potential at university and make the most of the developmental opportunities that are available to you. If you are looking for springboard for change, this could be it!

    • Monday 25 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    It seems logical to write the introduction to an essay first, but in fact it can be easier to perfect this part later on, once you know what the essay is really trying to say. Whenever the time comes, it is useful to know the typical features of introductions and conclusions, so you can write them with confidence and efficiency. This session will outline the most common “moves” that these key sections include, and the language to make them clear and effective.

    • Monday 25 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Reading and research is an important part of the writing process. At university, your job is not just to repeat what other people have said, but to reach your own conclusions and present your own arguments based on what you have researched. This session explores how good notes can be used to help you find your writing ‘voice.’

    • Tuesday 26 October 10.00-11.30am

    Sign up here to join

    What exactly is analysis? Why is it so important in academic writing? How can I include more in my writing? Join us for this session where we will take the mystery out of analysis. We’ll also practice distinguishing between analysis and description and learn the types of questions you need to ask yourself when analysing a topic. 

    • Tuesday 26 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Are you struggling to get your Harvard referencing conventions right? Perhaps you’ve had feedback about your referencing and you’re not sure what you need to fix. This interactive session will focus on the content, formatting and punctuation of referencing, so you know what to include and how. The session will be one hour, followed by an optional 30 minutes for you to ask questions and discuss those tricky sources you’re not sure about. It’s perfect if you’re new to Harvard referencing, or just want to build your confidence.

    • Tuesday 26 October 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Knowing how paragraphs work is essential in ensuring that your ideas are effectively expressed in your writing. Poor paragraphing can result in really important arguments being hidden among minor details, and can also leave your writing feeling disorganised and not well-focused on the topic. This workshop will help you reach your paragraphing potential!

    • Wednesday 27 October 10.00-11.30am

    Sign up here to join

    It can be difficult to know how to approach a presentation assignment, but just like written assignments a simple structured plan is the best place to start. This one-hour session will give you some introductory tips to help you decide what to include, how you might order it, and how to check that you’re covering the points required by the task. There will also be 30 minutes at the end for you to ask questions and workshop your own presentation assignment plan.

    • Thursday 28 October 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

  • November

  • As well as having strong content, outstanding presentations must also be communicated clearly for your audience to understand. In this session, we will learn some essential strategies to help your audience follow your structure and understand your key points. We’ll also work on verbal delivery, using pace and intonation to keep your talk clear and engaging. The workshop will be one hour, with an extra 30 minutes at the end for you to ask questions and discuss your own presentation assignment.

    • Tuesday 2 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Would you like to make your writing sound more “formal” or “academic”? Effective academic writing follows certain conventions of style and clarity, which help you communicate your ideas in an appropriate and convincing way. This one-hour session will cover some top tips for writers who are new to the style of writing required at university, or who wish to improve in this area. There will also be time at the end to address any specific questions you may have.

    • Tuesday 2 November 2.00-3.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Students are often told that their writing should be more critical, but how do you do this? This workshop explores the value of questions in moving from being descriptive to more critical, and where your own ideas fit in the research process.

    • Tuesday 2 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Students are often told that their writing should be more critical, but how do you do this? This workshop explores the value of questions in moving from being descriptive to more critical, and where your own ideas fit in the research process.

    • Wednesday 3 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Knowing how paragraphs work is essential in ensuring that your ideas are effectively expressed in your writing. Poor paragraphing can result in really important arguments being hidden among minor details, and can also leave your writing feeling disorganised and not well-focused on the topic. This workshop will help you reach your paragraphing potential!

    • Wednesday 3 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Using sources in your writing is an important part of academic study. This workshop will introduce and practice the most common ways of incorporating references in your writing and will highlight good habits that will help you avoid plagiarism.

    • Thursday 4 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    It can be difficult to know how to approach a presentation assignment, but just like written assignments a simple structured plan is the best place to start. This one-hour session will give you some introductory tips to help you decide what to include, how you might order it, and how to check that you’re covering the points required by the task. There will also be 30 minutes at the end for you to ask questions and workshop your own presentation assignment plan.

    • Thursday 4 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Knowing how paragraphs work is essential in ensuring that your ideas are effectively expressed in your writing. Poor paragraphing can result in really important arguments being hidden among minor details, and can also leave your writing feeling disorganised and not well-focused on the topic. This workshop will help you reach your paragraphing potential!

    • Monday 8 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Grammar is more than just a set of rules to follow when constructing sentences; it is an agreed code and structure for writing that helps us communicate ideas clearly to avoid misunderstanding. Clear and accurate communication is needed when writing about complex ideas in our academic work. This workshop explores some of the key rules, and the reasoning that underpins them.

    • Monday 8 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Are you struggling to get your Harvard referencing conventions right? Perhaps you’ve had feedback about your referencing and you’re not sure what you need to fix. This interactive session will focus on the content, formatting and punctuation of referencing, so you know what to include and how. The session will be one hour, followed by an optional 30 minutes for you to ask questions and discuss those tricky sources you’re not sure about. It’s perfect if you’re new to Harvard referencing, or just want to build your confidence.

    • Tuesday 9 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    As well as having strong content, outstanding presentations must also be communicated clearly for your audience to understand. In this session we will learn some essential strategies to help your audience follow your structure and understand your key points. We’ll also work on verbal delivery, using pace and intonation to keep your talk clear and engaging. The workshop will be one hour, with an extra 30 minutes at the end for you to ask questions and discuss your own presentation assignment.

    • Tuesday 9 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Making the most of feedback is a useful quality to develop at university, which can be put to great use throughout your working life. In this session, we explore the different sources of feedback you can access at university, the barriers that can stop people making the most of feedback opportunities, and the skills and qualities involved in turning feedback into an action plan for sustained improvement.

    • Wednesday 10 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Being an effective student involves developing the skills and qualities you already have and acquiring new ones. This workshop will provide you with the tools to analyse how you can reach your full potential at university and make the most of the developmental opportunities that are available to you. If you are looking for springboard for change, this could be it!

    • Wednesday 10 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Essay tasks come in many different forms, and it may be hard to decide what to include and how to structure your main body. Making a plan based on your instructions will help you to get started, stay on task, and feel more confident that your finished assignment is clear and focussed. This session is suitable for undergraduates and any student lacking confidence in their essay planning. It will show you both how to make a plan, and how to use it! The workshop will be one hour, followed by a chance for you to ask questions and start planning your own assignment.

    • Thursday 11 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    What exactly is analysis? Why is it so important in academic writing? How can I include more in my writing? Join us for this session where we will take the mystery out of analysis.  We’ll also practice distinguishing between analysis and description and learn the types of questions you need to ask yourself when analysing a topic. 

    • Thursday 11 November 3.30-5.00pm

    Sign up here to join

    It seems logical to write the introduction to an essay first, but in fact it can be easier to perfect this part later on, once you know what the essay is really trying to say. Whenever the time comes, it is useful to know the typical features of introductions and conclusions, so you can write them with confidence and efficiency. This session will outline the most common “moves” that these key sections include, and the language to make them clear and effective.

    • Monday 15 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Would you like to make your writing sound more “formal” or “academic”? Effective academic writing follows certain conventions of style and clarity, which help you communicate your ideas in an appropriate and convincing way. This one-hour session will cover some top tips for writers who are new to the style of writing required at university, or who wish to improve in this area. There will also be time at the end to address any specific questions you may have.

    • Tuesday 16 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Making the most of feedback is a useful quality to develop at university, which can be put to great use throughout your working life. In this session we explore the different sources of feedback you can access at university, the barriers that can stop people making the most of feedback opportunities, and the skills and qualities involved in turning feedback into an action plan for sustained improvement.

    • Tuesday 16 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Grammar is more than just a set of rules to follow when constructing sentences; it is an agreed code and structure for writing that helps us communicate ideas clearly to avoid misunderstanding. Clear and accurate communication is needed when writing about complex ideas in our academic work. This workshop explores some of the key rules, and the reasoning that underpins them.

    • Wednesday 17 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Are you struggling to get your Harvard referencing conventions right? Perhaps you’ve had feedback about your referencing and you’re not sure what you need to fix. This interactive session will focus on the content, formatting and punctuation of referencing, so you know what to include and how. The session will be one hour, followed by an optional 30 minutes for you to ask questions and discuss those tricky sources you’re not sure about. It’s perfect if you’re new to Harvard referencing, or just want to build your confidence.

    • Thursday 18 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    This workshop aims to help you submit your work with more confidence. We’ll consider what you need to check, and how. You’ll also have the chance to try out some strategies that might help you see your work as you’ve never seen it before...

    • Friday 19 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Have you been given an assignment that you’re not sure how to approach? Perhaps you’ve struggled in the past to understand exactly what you need to write? This session will show you how to use your task instructions and other resources to get a clearer idea of what your lecturers are hoping to see. Perfect for undergraduates or anyone who wants more confidence in this area, this session will last one hour and be followed by a chance for you to ask questions and discuss your specific assignments.

    • Tuesday 23 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Visual information, such as graphs, charts and photographs, is a common feature of text types like reports and portfolios. This session will offer some useful tips and strategies to present visual information in a clear, professional way for your reader to use. Aimed at anyone new to this aspect of academic writing, or wishing to improve, the workshop will be one hour, followed by an optional 30-minute Q&A.

    • Tuesday 23 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Do you get stressed about exams or in-class assessment? This session explores how to use active rather than passive approaches to make your revision effective, overcome exam nerves, and make sure you use your exam time well.

    • Wednesday 24 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    When you’re focusing on what you want to say, it can be easy to forget that your reader needs to easily follow and understand your ideas. This one-hour session will show you some simple ways to keep your reader engaged and clear about the points you want to make, allowing your good ideas to stand out and be noticed. 

    • Thursday 25 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    This workshop aims to help you submit your work with more confidence. We’ll consider what you need to check, and how. You’ll also have the chance to try out some strategies that might help you see your work as you’ve never seen it before...

    • Monday 29 November 12.00-1.30pm

    Sign up here to join

    Do you get stressed about exams or in-class assessment? This session explores how to use active rather than passive approaches to make your revision effective, overcome exam nerves, and make sure you use your exam time well.

    • Tuesday 30 November 4.00-5.30pm

    Sign up here to join