OSSC is excited to announce the launch its inaugural Michaelmas ’19 Talk Series. This term’s line-up of talks will feature three experts in their fields talking about everything from the skills needed for scientific research to developing good writing habits, mastering different styles of writing, the writer’s process, and the importance of good grammar for everyone (and especially for lawyers)!

All talks will begin at 5:30pm and will be held in Talbot Hall, Lady Margaret Hall, Norham Gardens, OX2 6QA. Talks are free. No booking required.

Carolyn Carr: Navigating life as a research scientist. 5:30pm Tuesday 29 October, Talbot Hall, LMH

Dr Carolyn Carr is an Associate Professor of Biological Sciences at DPAG at Oxford. She currently works in the field of stem cell therapy for heart failure. Her background is in chemistry, and she completed her BA and DPhil in chemistry at LMH, Oxford. Aside from her research at Oxford, Dr Carr has also worked as a researcher for Kodak and for a University spin-out company studying Alzheimer’s disease.

Dr Carr will discuss her not always straightforward career path, what it is like working in academia and industry, and what skills are important for life as a research scientist.

Bart van Es in conversation: The craft of writing. 5:30pm 19 November, Talbot Hall, LMH

Professor Bart van Es is a Professor of English Literature at Oxford and a Fellow of St Catherine’s College. Professor van Es has written academic books on Spenser and Shakespeare, and he is also the author of the part-memoir-part-history book, The Cut Out Girl, which won the 2018 Costa Book of the Year Award,

Professor van Es will be joined in conversation by Dr Margaret Coombe, Director of the Oxford Study Skills Centre, and will discuss his latest book and the process of writing it.

The conversation will also consider the craft of writing and writing more generally: how writers write, the different types of writing, and how everyone from aspiring writers to reluctant writers of tutorial essays can get busy writing.

Ben Staveley: Good grammar and the law 5:30pm Wednesday 4 December, Talbot Hall, LMH

Ben Staveley is a crusader for good writing and grammar with a legal background. He was a tax partner at Freshfields for fifteen years, where he became convinced that the firm’s reputation would stand or fall by the quality of its writing. Since then, he’s made excellence in writing his personal and professional pursuit. He currently works at the University of Southampton where he teaches writing to law students and as an independent consultant, helping law firms and other businesses who want to achieve written excellence. He is also the author of Faultless Grammar: the busy lawyer’s reminder guide.

Mr Staveley will offer a light-hearted discussion of what makes good writing and grammar, how students in any discipline can improve their writing skills, and what may be at stake, legally speaking, in a single comma.