Effective Communication Skills for Graduate Students

Graduate school is a time to learn communication skills that will help you in the professional world. Part of being a professional is being able to effectively communicate with others, from your professors, to your peers, to your clients.  

Perfect Your Listening Skills

Part of learning to communicate is learning to listen. When someone else is speaking, make sure to ask clarifying questions. By paying attention and reflecting on what others are saying, you can not only build better connections, but it can teach you different forms of communication.

Perfect Your Writing Skills

Another communication skill to work on would be your writing skills. Many people forget to hone in their writing skills in favor of practicing their speaking skills. Keep in mind that both of these forms of communication are vital in the working world. You should be prepared to write for every audience you might encounter in your career, in a clear and concise manner. Practice and perfect your writing process, from brainstorming, to drafting, to editing the finished product. Lastly, you should practice writing across different forms whether they are digital or physical. Even within digital communication, reflect on how to write emails and reports.

Perfect Your Public Speaking Skills

When public speaking, you should consider your audience. Ensure that your presentation is geared toward them. Then you should think of a “hook” for your presentation, within the first sentence, that will interest your audience. Next, you should consider the tone of what you are presenting, whether it is persuasive or informative and how you can effectively communicate it. To conclude, you should consistently practice your presentation. Practicing will help make you more confident when speaking. Also, it will solidify the material in your mind so that you are not relying on your notes or your visuals. Another good way to practice is to record your practice to see your body language. Analyze how you can adjust your body language to appear more confident. 

Communication skills are needed across every specialization. It’s Important for graduate students to reflect and practice different forms of communication that they will encounter within the professional world. 
If you need extra guidance on developing your writing skills, click here for more tips!   

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