Spring School Questionnaire Summary
Following the spring school “Language, Music and Cognition: Organizing Events in Time” held from 26th February to 2nd March 2018 at the University of Cologne, participants evaluated our spring school by means of a feedback questionnaire. Participants were invited to share their experiences, opinions, and criticism regarding the preparation work, the program of the event, the organizers’ work, and the overall quality. In the following, we provide a short summary of the results.
Regarding our program, among the ‘topics of the day’, cognitive neuroscience was evaluated as most interesting. Additionally, most participants agreed that they became more comfortable with the topics they had not been familiar with before and were motivated to learn those topics. Concerning our workshops, the vocal learning and rhythmic ability workshop which discussed evolutionary topics was evaluated as most informative in the context of the current spring school.
Half of the participants preferred reading materials to prepare for the lectures, while the other half rather attended introductory group work sessions. Both methods of preparing participants for the lectures of the day were rated as helpful. Participants reported that they found the length and difficulty of the lectures to be appropriate. The feedback survey also tells us to consider changes in the structure and organisation of the group work sessions in the morning and the ratio of lecture time and break time.
Participants found that the organizers and the website were very helpful and the scientific atmosphere was very enjoyable and productive. The social events which we offered throughout the spring school week was reported as helping the participants to get to know each other. Our spring school app, which we developed for use during the spring school, was used by more than half of the participants, which still leaves room for improvement, considering its usefulness in providing information and help in an easy and accessible way.
Overall, the quality of the spring school was evaluated very positively, and some minor changes regarding schedule and equipments will improve the next event. Our relatively new ideas (the app and the introductory group works in the morning) will definitely see improvement in our next spring school based on the feedback of this questionnaire.
We are looking forward to making the spring school 2019 an even more enjoyable experience for our participants based on the results of this questionnaire.