Presenting Research Data and Information

Yesterday I attended Warren Pearce and Nicola Underdown’s enjoyable and informative workshop on data presentation at the Jubilee Graduate Centre. Whilst I doubt I will be using any quantitative data in my thesis, there was plenty here to take away for future reference.

Warren talked about the ‘curse of knowledge,’ and demonstrated how our assumptions of audience understanding can affect the process of communicating information. He recommended Made to Stick, a useful looking book by the Heath Brothers on communicating ideas, as well as the ‘bible’ of statistical graphics by Edward Tufte, which has helped establish some of the key principles of visual communication.

Nicola introduced the acronym LATCH, to describe the fundamental elements on which different presentational figures (graphs, charts etc.) are based: Location, Alphabet. Time, Category and Hierarchy, and discussed the importance of context, describing how the interaction of the author in environments related with different dissemination formats (paper, poster, presentation etc.) influences audience understanding.

Overall, this was a great introduction to an element of research dissemination that is often overlooked and undervalued. There has been such a good response that Warren and Nicola are running the workshop again next week. They’ve also set up an excellent online resource at


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