Convincing and Debating

Seminar PDF

Duration: 2 days

Course type: In-house seminar

Trainer: Philipp Gramlich or Karin Bodewits

Target group: PhD students and postdocs

Number of participants: 6-12

Scientists are often in the situation that they need to discuss their findings or their need for extra funding or resources with other members of the scientific community or with the general public. The ability to express yourself in a concise and clear manner, using strong arguments, is therefore of utmost importance.
This interactive seminar with real life scenarios, public speaking exercises, argumentation examples and debates, will help participants to successfully engage in various interactions with other scientists and non-scientists. Your Q&A sessions will never be the same again. You will convince your boss to buy this fantastic Mass Spec. You will disarm other people´s arguments against you now that you can look behind their facade. And last but not least, you will win on paper (e.g. research- and grant- proposals)!

Seminar contents

Public speaking

  • Fear of public speaking
  • Establish contact
  • Different group sizes
  • Stylistic figures

Argumentation strategies

  • The right argument for the right audience and setting
  • Scientific proof vs. understandable analogy: get more versatile

Structuring your argumentation

  • Structures for adversarial and neutral audiences
  • Addressing the ‘opponent’ or a third party


  • Learn to challenge the argument
  • Reply to challenges and even attacks

This course can be combined with the courses Negotiation and Oral presentation to give the integrated 4-day programme Argumentation and presentation.


Karin Bodewits ( or Philipp Gramlich ( )/ Tel: +49 (0)89 99 016 971