Posted by Alan Nagel on January 12, 1999 at 08:57:39:
In Reply to: Conference Lectures - a modest proposal posted by Jerry Silverman on January 11, 1999 at 23:04:51:
: Many of those who have posted on this subject have remarked on the low regard in which they hold the lectures at conferences. Let me offer a suggestion.
: 1) Fewer lectures.
YES of course: organizing committees must take some responsibility to balance out academic power, conoisseurship/expertise, and recognition/exposure of the established authorities. Cf. Alberto Boralevi's finely comprehensive remarks on the practicalities.
: 2) Longer lectures. ... at least 40-60 minutes in length. Or perhaps a single academic session could contain two presentations [and] panel discussion by other experts in the field.
: 3) Written texts.
Consider advantages in combining 2) and 3). How many of us in fact keep focused on 45-50 min. lectures? (not enough of my students!)
BUT handouts of outlines, 'takehome points' illustrations, etc. are warranted--even necessary?--if lectures go over 20 minutes.
ALTERNATIVE cf. brief presentations in person with full text argument in written form available in advance.
AND with etext becoming very widely used, why not make texts available on boards like this, and for those with simpler technology by request email?
THEN panel discussion of the brief oral presentations informed by the written texts can be offered. (Several academic conferences have gone this route, with varying results.)
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