SLAC Outreach Project Proposal
A key component of SLAC training is experience in communicating science to non-scientific audiences through outreach. SLAC trainees can fulfill the Outreach requirement of their program by either taking an existing graduate course centered on outreach activities, or by proposing a novel outreach project.
- Demonstrate an ability to connect science and the science community with nonscientists
- Communicate scientific research through a range of media to educators, policy makers, and/or the public
- Demonstrate an ability to translate science into impactful, sustainable community engagements
Individuals or groups can propose an outreach project. Projects require a faculty advisor and a clear plan for sustained engagement with a non-UConn population for the purpose of outreach. Outreach activities can be educational, informational or promote appreciation of diversity. Students will typically enroll in one credit of independent study with the faculty advisor to document their experience.
Proposals must address four questions: What is the purpose of the outreach activity? Who are you trying to communicate to? What are you trying to communicate? Why is this an important communication and use of everyone’s time? In addition, proposals should provide the means of contacting the community and indicate how the engagement is to be sustained.
Typically this project would be proposed at the end of the fall semester of the fellowship year or early in the spring semester, and then completed over the spring (and perhaps summer) of the fellowship year.
Project proposals can be submitted to the Curriculum Committee for evaluation on a rolling basis. The Curriculum Committee’s role is to check for feasibility, ensure the project is an appropriate scope (neither under-ambitious nor over-ambitious), and connect the project leaders with a faculty mentor who will provide guidance on the project.
- Develop a problem-based module on sleep and memory to deliver to a middle science classroom.
- Develop a visual exploration of the brain for school age children to promote engagement in brain science.
- Presentation to senior group to motivate hearing aid adoption with an infographic and informational handout with references to services.
- Neurodiversity and stigma—presentation to parents or school admins/teachers about how brains differ to move thinking away from a deficit model.
- Being co-editor of the Brain Digest.
- Design a website aggregating information about activities that have cognitive benefits for kids at different ages. Develop social media campaign to disseminate the information to interested communities.
- Design in-service training for daycare/school teachers on an aspect of development.
- Develop a TikTok to promote the learning sciences to middle and high school children.