BSU Research News – 31/03/2017

Workshop focus: Managing a Research Project

The BSU Researcher Development Team puts on a variety of free training events, lectures and workshops each year. From grant funding and viva preparation, to effective leadership and mindfulness, the fast-growing programme aims to meet the development needs of all researchers at every stage of their career. This week, our focus turned to project management, and giving students the knowledge and training to manage a collaborative research project, be it a current PhD, or more complex international initiative.

Project management sounds rather dull, but it is in fact an exciting box of tools to help plan and put a new idea in to practice, from start to finish. Or, as Dennis Lock puts it:

‘The principle identifying characteristic of a project is its novelty. It is a step into the unknown, fraught with risk and uncertainty…’

This more dynamic take underpinned yesterday’s workshop by adopting a hands-on, practical approach, to get students planning project scenarios with risks, issues and a few crises thrown in for good measure. After exploring PM good practice such as milestone planning, setting SMART objectives, and learning the secret to being a good leader, the group set about designing and implementing their own collaborative projects.


They were also introduced to a handy free planning tool called Trello, which provides an online interactive space in which a project team can build and manage a project. Trello is surprisingly user-friendly for the non-techy, with a simple yet very useful ‘to do list’ function, along with the usual calendar, document-sharing and meeting alert capabilities.

By the end of the session, students had completed an A to Z of project management in just four hours (with lunch in between), and were newly equipped with the fundamentals of a handy piece of planning software. Feedback has been positive, with praise for Trello and enthusiasm to extend the session, and use real-life scenarios to apply what had been learnt. Generally, students found the session very enjoyable and felt it would be really useful in the future.


We have several other exciting, practical workshops coming up, focusing on leadership, research funding, academic-writing and career development, to name a few. so check out the Researcher Development page for details and booking information. We hope to see you there!

Early Stage Researcher Conference 2017

Thursday 8th June 2017 will see Bath Spa University’s third annual Early Stage Researcher Conference descend on our beautiful Corsham Court Campus. Centering around the theme of ‘Impact’, postgraduates and ESR’s from across the University are invited to attend the free conference, to deliver and learn about all the research that is happening at BSU.

Find more on the conference website at, and questions can be directed to the Committee Chair, Conor, at

Don’t forget: the deadline for sign ups and submissions is 14th April 2017. Don’t miss out!

Explore Art Trowbridge event

To celebrate the growing cultural and creative offer in Trowbridge, Town Hall Arts, Drawing Projects UK, and Trowbridge Museum have joined up to offer an evening of special events on Thursday 6th April 2017. Enjoy the exhibitions and explore art in Trowbridge at your own pace or with a guided walking tour across each venue. The evening will start with drinks at 5.00 p.m. at Drawing Projects UK at Bridge House on Stallard Street, and the guided tours will commence from there. All three venues are open from 5.00 – 7.00 p.m. and the events are free of charge. BSU MA Curatorial Practice student Nina Jesih is taking part, and the event is supported by Anita Taylor, Dean of School.

Thursday 6th April, 5.00 p.m. – 7.00 p.m.
Town Hall Arts, Town Hall, Market Street, Trowbridge, BA14 8EQ
Drawing Projects UK, Bridge House, 10 Stallard Street, Trowbridge, BA14 9AE
Trowbridge Museum, The Shires Shopping Centre, Court Street, Trowbridge, BA14 8AT

Open Scores Lab 7: Cathy van Eck

Wednesday 5 April, 12-4pm, CM108

In Lab 7 we welcome Cathy van Eck who will present recent work that explores microphones and loudspeakers as instruments, as well as ongoing work by Lab composers Louis d’Heudieres, Oogoo Maia and James Saunders.

12-2pm: Cathy van Eck – Air, Electricity and Movement

Cathy van Eck composes relationships between everyday objects, human performers, and sound. She is interested in setting her gestures into unusual, surprising or poetic relationships with sounds, mainly by electronic means. The result is a kind of performative sound art, since it combines elements from performance art, electronic music, and visual art. Today, Cathy will discuss some of her own works and relate them to her research on microphones and loudspeakers, as examined in her book Between Air and Electricity. For more information please see Cathy’s website.

2-4pm: New pieces by Louis d’Heudieres, Oogoo Maia, and James Saunders

The second half of the lab will feature realisations and discussion of work in progress by composers Louis d’Heudieres, Oogoo Maia and James Saunders. The pieces will variously involve reading very fast, locating hidden information, and body manipulation.

From Research to Social Entrepreneurship

If you missed last week’s workshop focus on Creating Positive Change, you can catch a great blog post on the event by one of the keynote speakers, Dave Jarman.

Creative Practice PhD Methodologies seminar

Do you struggle with contextualising your creative practice as academic research? Is the thesis that you are writing to accompany your practice making your hair fall out? Do your PhD students look at you with a puzzled expression when you discuss research methodologies?

In this seminar aimed at PhD students and staff supervising creative practice or practice-based PhDs, Dr Donna Hancox from Queensland University of Technology (QUT) will offer an interactive introduction to understanding and developing creative practice research methodologies. Dr Hancox will present the work that she has done at QUT to help students undertaking practice-based PhDs conceptualise and develop their research methodologies. She will present the framework that she has developed to evaluate creative and other non-traditional research outputs as part of the research quality agenda being developed by Australian universities. The seminar will be interactive and a number of case studies will be presented and discussed. This seminar is hosted by Making Books: Creativity, Print Culture and the Digital Research Centre and supported by GALA.

To sign up, please go to



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