Scientific Community Engagement Fundamentals private cohort for staff and friends of Australian BioCommons

CSCCE is collaborating with Australian BioCommons to host a private cohort of Scientific Community Engagement Fundamentals for staff and other community-builders in Australia. This highly-interactive 8-week virtual experience introduces core frameworks, concepts, and vocabulary in community management tailored to the STEM ecosystem, and is designed for those convening STEM communities of all sizes. 

The course will begin with a social hour on Tuesday, 7 February 2023 and will run on Tuesdays and Fridays until Friday, 31 March 2023. Most sessions will take place from 10am – 11:30am AEDT – please note the exceptions below.

The key dates and weekly topics are as follows (all dates and times in AEDT):

  • Social hour: Tuesday, 7 February – This session will take place from 10am – 11am
  • Lessons and co-labs: Tuesdays and Fridays, 10am – 11:30 am AEDT beginning Tuesday, 14 Feb through Tuesday, 28 March
    • Tuesday, 14 February and Friday, 17 February: What is community? 
    • Tuesday, 21 February and Friday, 24 February: Exploring community engagement roles
    • Tuesday, 28 February and Friday, 3 March: People and purpose
    • Tuesday, 7 March and Friday, 10 March: Community programming and scaffolded participation
    • Tuesday, 14 March and Friday, 17 March: Reading week
    • Tuesday, 21 March and Friday, 24 March: Community member participation
    • Tuesday, 28 March: Community lifecycle models
  • Graduation: Friday, 31 March – This session will be extended to 10am – 12pm AEDT

The cost to attend is AUD $1500 per person (this price reflects CSCCE’s general rate per ticket, USD $995, based on the 17 October 2022 exchange rate). Register your interest in this private cohort by sending an email to cscce-training-eoi@biocommons.org.au by Friday, 20 January 2023. See below for a course overview, syllabus and learning objectives. 

Course overview

Scientific Community Engagement Fundamentals is an eight-week course designed to offer new or existing community managers core frameworks and vocabulary to describe their community’s purpose, refine or create strategic programming to engage community members around their shared goals, and identify ways to lower barriers to member participation. While the content is designed for any level of learner, it should not be thought of as a “beginner” course. Rather, it is intended to create common ground so that scientific community managers can converse across disciplines, more efficiently learn from one another, and build successful engagement strategies that are grounded in theory.

Each week, participants will meet virtually (using Zoom) for a 90 minute lesson and a 90 minute Co-Lab. While lessons will involve structured presentations and activities, Co-Lab time is for discussion, reporting out, and seeking feedback from instructors and fellow learners.

Each week will also include approximately 90 minutes of homework, for a total time commitment of 4.5 hours per week.

Graduation from the course requires regular attendance and the presentation of a graduation poster during the final Co-Lab.

Course syllabus and learning objectives

WEEK ONE: GET TO KNOW YOUR COHORT

Before the course begins, we host a virtual social hour for all participants to find out about their instructors and fellow learners.

WEEK TWO: WHAT IS COMMUNITY?

Participants will gain an understanding of the key elements of a community as well as how to define their own community. Through the creation of a community overview statement, participants will explore the reach and purpose of their community.

WEEK THREE: EXPLORING COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT ROLES

Learners will consider the skills needed to excel in the role of a community manager, and use CSCCE’s skills wheel to explore the skills that they currently use. We’ll also explore the challenges of less visible leadership roles and how community managers represent a distinct kind of network-centric leadership.

WEEK FOUR: PURPOSE AND PEOPLE

With a stronger understanding of the nature of community, participants will work to identify the different stakeholder and member relationships for their community and the desired goals for each type. Discussion will include the challenges of distributing power and how to identify barriers to participation.

WEEK FIVE: COMMUNITY PROGRAMMING AND SCAFFOLDED PARTICIPATION

Via a series of worksheets, we’ll explore current and planned content and programming in our communities and whether it aligns with member needs. We’ll introduce the concept of scaffolding and its importance in providing supportive, responsive and multi-modal programming that empowers members to participate.

WEEK SIX: READING WEEK

Course participants can attend two optional sessions at the same time as the regular lessons and Co-Labs to share out progress so far, work through structured examples, and catch up on completing their course worksheets.

WEEK SEVEN: COMMUNITY MEMBER PARTICIPATION

Using the CSCCE Community Participation Model, participants will analyze the current programming in their own communities – identifying gaps and how to better align programming with desired outcomes. They’ll also acquire core vocabulary for describing different aspects of their community programming.

WEEK EIGHT: COMMUNITY LIFECYCLE MODELS AND GRADUATION

Community lifecycle models can inform the type of programming appropriate for a community, as well as how the role of  a community manager changes.  Learners explore several models and discuss the implications of a community lifecycle stages – for programming, team planning and evaluation.