Research Communications Academy

Word cloud for UNH Research Communications Academy


The Research Communications Academy (RCA) trains faculty members, graduate students, and research-related staff to effectively communicate the power and impact of UNH scholarship with a broad audience. Launched in 2019, the RCA is hosted annually by the Research Office, NH EPSCoR and the UNH Graduate School.

2022 Research Communications Academy

UNH’s fourth annual Research Communications Academy (RCA), scheduled for spring semester 2022, provides intensive communications training to a select cohort of UNH faculty, graduate students, postdoctoral researchers and research staff from all schools, colleges, institutes and disciplines, as well as to NH Biomade team members. The 2022 RCA will launch with a three-hour online session hosted by the Alda Center for Communicating Science (ACCS) on January 20 or 21, 2022 (2 – 5 p.m.). ACCS facilitators will provide a highly interactive training designed to help researchers connect and interact with an audience in meaningful ways, create memorable messages, and prioritize clarity. Registration for the 2022 RCA cohort is now closed.

In addition, the 2022 RCA will offer Zoom workshops addressing specific communications skills. These workshops are open to all, and you do not have to be a part of the RCA cohort to attend.

Better Posters with Zen Faulkes

Friday, March 11, 2022, 12:40 - 2 p.m.

Almost anyone who’s wandered the poster hall at an academic conference or squinted at complex figures in a presentation has thought it: There has to be a better way. From overly long titles, tiny text and swarms of logos to bad font choices, color schemes and blurry images – it’s easy to leave viewers confused by your poster’s message. In this session, Zen Faulkes, who’s written the Better Posters blog and Better Posters book, will share tips on how to create and deliver conference posters that deliver maximum impact for your research. Faulkes, a biologist and instructor at McMaster University, will also review and workshop finished or in-progress posters submitted by Research Communications Academy participants. Register here.

Watch a video of the session here.

Communicating with News Media

Thursday, March 24, 2022, 12:45 p.m.

A panel of veteran news reporters — New Hampshire Bulletin senior reporter Annmarie Timmins and Hakai Magazine photojournalist Steve DeNeef — join UNH media relations specialists and experienced interviewee Alix Contosta, research assistant professor in EOS, to discuss how to make any news interview a positive experience in communicating your scholarship. Supporting material is here.

Watch a video of the panel here.

Updated 3/23/22: Steve DeNeef is unable to join this panel.

On-Camera Practice Interviews

Thursday, March 31, 2022, 12:30 - 2 p.m.; open only to selected members of RCA 2022 cohort

Practice being interviewed on-camera with UNH media relations specialists.

Using Social Media for Research Communications

Thursday, April 7, 2022, 12:40 - 2:00 p.m.

Hear from your colleagues about how to use social media to communicate scholarship, connect with collaborators, create a personal learning network and increase the impact of your work. Panelists: Remington Moll, assistant professor of wildlife ecology; Anne Hartwell, doctoral student in oceanography and Skype a Scientist participant; Julia Saltzman, a graduate student in quantitative marine ecology; and Nate Spada ‘21G.

Watch a video of the panel here.

Communicating with Policy makers

Friday, April 15, 2022, 2 - 4 p.m.

Communicating with policy makers often comes in the form of supporting or opposing a bill by providing testimony to legislators in committee. PowerPlay’s interactive training lab will create a mock legislative committee hearing using actor/improvisors. Participants will be encouraged to ask the characters questions, make suggestions about how to navigate the challenges they're facing, and then rewind the scene and examine in real time how effective those strategies might be. PowerPlay has developed a dynamic, interactive way to confront crucial issues from the comfort and safety of your chair.

Watch a video of the panel here.

Communicating in Interdisciplinary Teams

Thursday, April 21, 2022, 12:40 - 2:00 p.m.

Teams, including interdisciplinary teams, are important to solving complex problems, and strong communication is an essential component to team success. This workshop focuses on fostering communication among team members. Experts and exercises will help you understand team foundations, explore potential differences a member may bring to the team and facilitate team discussions. With Tuck Pescosolido, an associate professor in Paul College with expertise in team development. Moderated by Maria Emanuel, senior associate of research and large center development and manager of UNH’s Collaborative Research Excellence (CoRE) initiative.

Watch a video of the session here.

Contact Justine Stadler with questions.


“I recommend the Research Communications Academy to any researcher — in any field. If we want our research to make a difference, then we need to constantly improve our ability to advocate for it.”

Bryan Mascio

Postdoctoral researcher, education

Research Communications Tips and Resources

Past Research Communications Academies

Read more about the 1st annual RCA