The second annual conference for Research Software Engineers invites applications to present a workshop or tutorial on a topic of interest to research software engineers and academic software developers. You can put your idea forward to be considered as a hands-on tutorial, which will teach a new skill or technology, or as a discussion workshop.

Tutorials and workshops can be on any topic that may be of interest to research software engineers and academic research software developers. We are particularly interested in the following themes:

  • Good software development practice
    • Tools and techniques
    • Culture and experiences
  • Reproducible software & research
  • Specific programming techniques or new languages
    • Parallel programming
    • Introducing a useful module or library
    • Demonstrating a new programming language
  • RSE as a career

Each session will have an RSE volunteer assigned to it, they will be there to provide technical assistance and an extra pair of hands during the tutorial or workshop. All attendees will be bringing their own laptops, and the RSE team will be creating virtual machines that will allow the hands-on tutorial material to be run across all of their different operating systems. It is expected that discussion workshops will not require participants to use laptops.

Who should apply?

We are keen for the tutorials to be used by RSEs to help teach other RSEs. You don’t need to be the inventor or developer behind a piece of software to teach other people how to use it.

We encourage anyone who has an interesting take on research software development:

  • Researchers at any career stage who develop software for research purposes
  • Software developers working in a research context, whatever their job title or department
  • People from any organisation that provide tools, platforms or services of interest to RSEs

No travel funds?

Anyone submitting an application to present at RSE2017 will be eligible to apply for a travel bursary. On the call documents as part of the submission there is a tick box to say whether you wish to apply for a bursary, and then a text box to explain your reasons for applying. Please fill in this box, bearing in mind the selection criteria listed here. Applicants must submit a completed talk, poster, workshop or tutorial application by the early submission deadline (April 7th) and will be notified of the outcome on April 13th. This will give time for you to find alternative travel money or withdraw or modify your submission before the full submission deadline on April 28th. Note that the bursary will be awarded pending the successful award of the talk, poster, workshop or tutorial submission.

First-time presenter?

We want you to present! It’s important that the program includes people who don’t normally publish papers or attend academic conferences or we’ll be missing whole sections of the RSE community.

It’s not intimidating. The emphasis is on learning from each other in a supportive atmosphere. Your perspective is welcome and this will be a great chance to start a wider discussion of issues you care about.

We can help. We can offer mentoring and other support with preparing your workshop or tutorial – just tick the box when submitting your proposal.

Guidance

While writing you application and the material for your tutorial or workshop, it might help to think about the following things

Audience

  • Who is your audience? Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced

Outcomes

  • What will your audience learn as a result of the workshop?
  • How will you know if the workshop has been a success?
  • Will there be anything generated as a result (Etherpad/Google doc/blog post/code)

Timings

  • It can be difficult to get the balance right between setting the scene and your attendees having enough time to have a go.
    • We recommend that the first introduction should be 5-10 mins of the tutorial/workshop lead talking
    • The bulk of the session should have the attendees doing the hands-on activity or participating in the discussion
    • Allow 10 minutes at the end to wrap up and where appropriate point to other resources
  • If the planning for the tutorial or workshop means that the lead spends more than half of the time talking to the audience, then consider whether it should be submitted as a talk instead

Software

  • It is not expected that discussion workshops will require the attendees to bring along a laptop.
  • Hands-on tutorial sessions will generally require participants to bring along a laptop which can run the VM we will provide
  • Any software or material you provide for the tutorial must be compatible with the Linux distribution we are using and aim to use less than 250 MB of space (as the VM will be distributed to attendees as a USB thumb drive)

Resources

Will your tutorial or workshop need any specific resource?

  1. Hands-on tutorials:
    • Will it need access to the internet? Which ports will you need open on the firewall? These must be supplied at least 8 weeks before the conference.
    • What will the attendees need to participate beyond bringing their own laptop?
    • Are there any prerequisites?
  2. Discussion workshops:
    • Do you need any stationery? Flipcharts etc
    • Will you need a specific room layout?

Applications

Please complete your submission before midnight on April 28th 2017. Please feel free to get in touch with either Catherine Jones (catherine.jones@stfc.ac.uk) or Matt Williams (matt.williams@bristol.ac.uk)  if you would like to discuss your idea for a workshop, or to discuss what technical support we can provide.

Submit a Workshop or Tutorial

Timeline

  • Friday 7th April – Early submission deadline (for people without travel budget to apply for bursaries)
  • Thursday 13 April – Provisional notification about travel bursaries (subject to workshop/tutorial being selected)

    • People without travel budget may withdraw submission
  • Friday 28 April – Deadline for submissions
  • Monday 22nd May – Notification of outcome