SISRM Workshops

Workshop Dates Summer 2023: June 12 – July 14

The Practice of Social Science Research Workshop provides students with supplemental professional skills development for students to use in and outside of the academy. Workshops include talks from UChicago faculty about their early-stage research projects, hands-on projects in academic writing, research, and research programs, and field visits to view research in practice within the Chicago area.

Workshops are open to all participants of the Summer Institute. Workshops are mandatory for students who are participating in the SISRM RA program.

The 2023 workshop schedule is in development and will be published in May.

SISRM has helped me come up with ideas about how I can more specifically approach my interests.This program has demonstrated how interdisciplinary the social sciences can be, in research and in the real world.

Stina B.

SISRM 2022

These images show SISRM fellows in the Summer 2022 workshop series. Images detail faculty chalk talks and excursions to the Art Institute of Chicago, the Chicago History Museum, the Argonne National Laboratory, and Mindworks: The Science of thinking

2022 Workshops

The following workshop descriptions from Summer 2022 reflect the general content of workshop programming.

Faculty Chalk Talks

Faculty chalk talks feature social scientists from throughout the University. In these talks, faculty discuss what social sciences research looks like in their research.

Exploring the Social Sciences

These workshops provide perspectives of what it means to engage in social scientific research, and how that engagement looks at the University of Chicago.

  • Panel: What do we mean when we say ‘Social Science Research?’ with Mark Bradley, Bernadotte E. Scmitt Distinguished Service Professor of International History and the College, and Leslie Kay, Professor of Psychology Professors Kay and Bradley discuss their journeys to the social sciences, how they view their respective fields within the context of the social sciences, and the advantages and disadvantages of interdisciplinary work. Professors also provide students with important points to think about when it comes to understanding research questions.


  • Social Science for Humanity: We Can’t ‘Tech’ Our Way Out of It with Paul Poast, Associate Professor, Political Science and Director, Summer Institute in Social Research Methods
    What is the value of social science research? Why bother majoring in social science? This workshop explores the importance of the concept economy in solving Big Problems.


  • An Introduction to the IRB and the Ethics of Research with Cheryl Danton, IRB Managing Director
    This workshop provides students with an overview of the Social and Behavioral Sciences IRB office—what it is, how it came to be, how it functions, and why ethics and procedures matter in social science research.

Library Skills and Research Tools

  • Starting Your Research: Best Practices for Finding and Using Library Resources with Rebecca Starkey, Head of Research and Instruction Services
    During this session, students learn about the multitude of resources offered by the library and elsewhere to help with their research
  • Digital Scholarship with Cecilia Smith, Director of Digital Scholarship
    This workshop discusses digital scholarship initiatives in the Library and introduces ways to start and execute research. It also touches on important considerations to make when collecting data.
  • Data Sources and Text Mining with Greg Fleming, Business and Economics Librarian
    This workshop covers an overview of the best practices and expectations for writing research abstracts and creating research presentations and posters.
  • In Partnership with the Center for Spatial Data Science with Dylan Halpern, Senior Software Engineer for the US Covid Atlas
    In this two-day workshop, students learn about open data and how to use it to explore questions and answer them. The goal of this workshop is for students to better understand different types of open source licenses and their implications, and to be able to find open source datasets.


    • Tools for Visualizing Geospatial Data Big and Small
    • Finding (and Making Use Of) Open Data Sources
    • Formats to Publish Data Findings and User Exploration

Professional Skills

Now that you have all of these skills, what do you do with them? This week we’ll talk about how to put your talents to pragmatic use, including thinking about them as they apply to future job applications.

  • Civic Engagement Session with Nick Currie, Assistant Director of Student Civic Engagement Initiatives


    This workshop helps students become aware of the opportunities available to interact with and help the community in Chicago.

  • Graduate School 101 with Lindsey Weglarz, Assistant Dean of Students for Admission


    This workshop introduces students to the topic of graduate school: what it is, why students should consider going or not going, and how to prepare.

  • Career Advancement: Transferring Your Skills with Daniel Clark, Program Director of Careers in Behavioral Sciences


    This workshop addresses the process of translating professional and extra-curricular experiences into cross-functional skills applicable to a variety of roles.

  • Writing Effective Abstracts and Presentation Design with Nichole Fazio, Executive Director, College Center for Research and Fellowships

    This workshop gives students overview of best practices and expectations for writing research abstracts and creating research presentations/posters, including how to maximize time and space and think about sequential narrative organization.

  • Professional Writing Workshop with Kathryn Cochran, Deputy Director of the Writing Program

Workshop Partners