So I figured now would be a good time to sit back and review how this Fall 2012 season of the #EBJClub went, and ponder about how we should do things in 2013. So here are some cool numbers:
- The EBJClub page had a total of 29 posts which brought 3,529 views and 112 comments. Not bad – and I still think we could have gotten even more, but unfortunately our most heated discussion, which prompted a post to keep it going, only came by the end of the semester, when everyone was swamped!
- We met a total of five times, with the videos available for future reference. The youtube videos have attracted 223 views.
- An average of eight people joined in for each discussion. As expected, numbers started high in the first couple meetings and steadily declined, but we were still strong and steady with six participants on the last couple meetings, which were great discussions!
- This is the statistics I am most proud of and happy about: Participants included undergraduates, masters students, PhD students, and postdocs from four different countries and about 10 different states – and that’s not counting the text-only participants!
Therefore, I think it was a very successful experiment! I learned a lot and enjoyed as much, and hope you guys share the enthusiasm. I loved it and hope we can keep it going for the next semester!
But wait – the best is yet to come!
We have some special ideas for the “next season” of the EBJClub which, if pan out, will make it an even more interesting experience overall! So now is the time to start thinking about putting things together and planning how we think it will work best. As I said above, I think it was a very successful experiment, but an experiment nonetheless. Some things worked great, others not so well. So now is the time I’d like to hear from you! What did you think? How can we make it even better? Are you in for next semester? Here are a couple things I have in mind:
- I think it will work better if we change the way we choose papers. The voting-every-week-from-a-couple-suggestions was nice, but I think we may have missed on some cool papers to discuss (for example those that came out after we made our list) and passed on some nice readings from our own list. Also, it was a lot of work to manage on my own. So we can either change the system, or take some volunteers to help out on the organization.
- One suggestion was to have one person responsible for choosing each week’s reading. I think it’s a nice suggestion, but I fear it might make people uncomfortable to join in mid-season. Also, it would require a certain “commitment” from a core group of people to participate throughout the entire season.
- Another suggestion was to choose a specific topic/book to read over the semester. This works really well for ournal clubs, and personally I quite like the consistent-readings format. But we are a very diverse group – one of our strong points, IMHO -, and it will be hard to find something everyone is interested in for a whole-semester commitment.
- Should we maintain an every-other-week meeting schedule? Meet more often? Meet less often?
So, hope everyone’s as excited as I am! Who’s in for Evolutionary Biology Journal Club Season 2? What are your suggestions on how to make it even better?