2020 NISS Writing Workshop for Junior Researchers (at JSM)

August 7 & 14, 2020

REGISTRATION IS CLOSED. Note the Adjusted Dates:  This workshop will take place August 7 and August 14.  This will follow the JSM virtual schedule.

Once again this very popular short course will be hosted by NISS.  If you are a recent graduate of a doctoral program and want to improve your communication skills - then this event is for you!

“Thanks for organizing the writing workshop! We are very glad that we attended the workshop. We learned a lot related to writing and got detailed comments on how to revise our papers. We are looking forward to other education programs provided by NISS.”  

Send in your application materials early!

Course Objective

The goal of the workshop is to provide instruction for writing journal articles and grant proposals. Participants will be required to provide a recent sample of their writing, which will be reviewed by a senior mentor. The sample could be a current draft of an article to be submitted for publication or an early version of a grant proposal. Senior mentors will be former journal editors and program officers, who will critique the submitted material and provide individual feedback. Participants will be expected to initiate a revision in response with additional feedback from their mentors. Deadline for the Writing Workshop application submission is July 5, with notification of acceptance on a rolling basis no later than July 15.

“The writing workshop was tremendously helpful! Thank you so much for organizing this workshop and helping us a lot. Thank you so much for sharing all the slides too. I am very grateful to take all advantages from NISS writing workshop.”

Course Content

The workshop consists of two sessions plus a final meeting with the mentor. The first tutorial is an all-day session that covers scientific writing, as well as how to organize a paper. It also discusses ethical issues, writing grant proposals and issues of journal choice and understanding and responding to reviewers’ comments. At the end of this session, each participant meets with the mentor who analyzed a paper the participant submitted prior to JSM. The second session focuses on the specific issues covering the writing process and details of grammar, sentence structure and word choice, especially helpful for participants whose native language is not English. A panel of senior researchers will discuss their experiences with technical writing in English.

“Thanks for your thorough guidance in the NISS Writing Workshop! I found that the one-to-one mentoring is very helpful for us to get insights into our shortcomings in academic writing. I really appreciate your work in organizing such a wonderful event.”

Target Audience 

The workshop is designed for researchers with a Ph.D. awarded or anticipated during 2014-2020 in statistics, biostatistics or related field. Attendance at the Writing Workshop will be limited and applicants within 0-6 years’ post-PhD and members of the participating societies will receive preference.  See testimonials from the evaluation at last year's event.

How to Register

You can register by clicking on the link just ahead, but, please note that you will need to submit a copy of your writing sample during this online registration.  To register, click on the (Pre-Registration Information Webform.Registration had closed)  Please answer all questions!  All submitted material will be handled confidentially!   If you have trouble with the submission of your paper on the registration form, please send a PDF or Word version to officeadmin@niss.org after you have completed the entire registration form. Thank you!

Course Fees

Workshop applicants are asked to register online, submit their writing sample.  If your submission is accepted, to confirm your interest in participation by paying the $150 registration fee after you have been accepted.  Funds have been secured for eligible participants without their own funding and registration can be reimbursed for those who complete the program.


Course Schedule

Virtually - On Zoom - All Times Eastern Time Zone

Part I: Friday, August 7, 2020   10:30 am-3:30 pm ET

Part II: Friday, August 14, 2020    10:30 am-3:30 pm ET

List of Confirmed Session Speakers / Mentors!

  • Jim Albert (Emeritus Distinguished University Professor of Statistics, Bowling Green State University)
  • Naomi Altman (Professor Emeritus of Statistics, Pennsylvania State University) 
  • Roger Berger (Emeritus Professor of Statistics and Founding Chair & Director, Arizona State University)
  • Emma Benn (Associate Professor of Biostatistics, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai)
  • Keith Crank (Program Officer at the National Science Foundation, retired)
  • Cheryl Eavey (Program Director for Methodology, Measurement, and Statistics at SBE, National Science Foundation) 
  • Susan Ellenberg (Professor of Biostatistics, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine)
  • Xuming He (Chair and H.C. Carver Professor of Statistics, University of Michigan)
  • Tim Hesterberg (Senior Statistician, Google)
  • Gabriel Huerta (Statistician, Sandia National Laboratories)
  • Peter Imrey (Professor of Medicine, Cleveland Clinic)
  • Tyler McCormick (Associate Professor of Statistics and Sociology, University of Washington)
  • Karen Messer (NIH BMRD Study Section Chair, Professor and Chief of the Division of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics, UC San Diego School of Medicine)
  • Nicholas Jewell (Professor of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine)
  • Nicole Lazar (Professor of Statistics, Pennsylvania State University)
  • Edsel Pena (Professor of Statistics, University of South Carolina)
  • David Rocke (Distinguished Professor of Biostatistics, University of California, Davis)
  • Ali Shojaie (Professor of Biostatistics, University of Washington)
  • Aleksandra Slavkovic (Professor of Statistics and Associate Dean, Pennsylvania State University)
  • Hal Stern (Interim Provost, Executive Vice Chancellor, and Chancellor's Professor of Statistics, University of California, Irvine)
  • John Stufken (Bank of America Excellence Professor, University of North Carolina at Greensboro)
  • Judy Wang (Program Director for Statistics at MPS/DMS, National Science Foundation; Professor of Statistics, George Washington University)
  • Leland Wilkinson (Chief Scientist, H2O.ai and Adjunct Professor of Computer Science, University of Illinois at Chicago)


Event Type


National Institute of Statistical Sciences


National Science Foundation
National Institute of Statistical Sciences
American Statistical Association
Institute for Mathematical Statistics
International Chinese Statistical Association
International Biometric Society (WNAR)




Pennsylvania Convention Center
Virtual Meetings
2020 NISS Writing Workshop for Junior Researchers - Sponsors
Susan Ellenberg speaking with 2019 workshop participants.
Getting comments regarding a paper in progress at the 2019 workshop.