Emerging Rural Scholars Summit

Proposed Program





Welcome & Introductions

Welcome to Montana State University

Introduction to the Rural Education Research Student Group

Getting to know participants


Morning Tea


Lightning Talks

5 minute presentations by attendees introducing their research


Keynote: Securing Research Funding

Why Should We Fund That? Successfully Applying for Rural Education Research Grants




Consult a Colleague: Being a Rural Education Academic

Session 1: Communicating and disseminating research to external stakeholders

Session 2: Communicating and disseminating research to an academic audience

Session 3: Where to after a PhD in rural education?


Afternoon Tea


Consult a Colleague: Doing Rural Education Research

Session 1: Rural Education Research Ethics

Session 2: Working with theory in rural education research

Session 3: Methodological considerations in rural education research


Summit Conclusion


Summit Picnic

Lightning Talks

“Lightning Talks are a series (usually at least 4 - 5) of 5 minute talks/presentations by different speakers, each introducing a topic or idea very quickly. A set of Lightning Talks is an excellent way to rapidly and compellingly share information about diverse topics from several presenters, without overwhelming the absorptive capacity of the audience. They are very useful when you have many presenters but a short schedule.” (UNICEF Knowledge Exchange  https://www.unicef.org/knowledge-exchange/files/Lightning_Talks_production.pdf)

More detailed information can be found under ‘submission guidelines’ for Lightning Talks

Keynote Address

Finding and applying for funding can be a daunting task. Where do you look? How do you pitch your rural project? How do you make it stand out in a crowd of applicants? What are grant partners looking for in an application? In this discussion we draw on the expertise of Professor John Pegg, director of the SiMERR National Research Centre, and founder of the ISFIRE symposium. John has over thirty years of experience receiving competitive grant funding and has successfully completed many large-scale rural education research projects.

Consult a Colleague Workshops

Being a rural academic is an exciting and important role. These workshops are informal discussions about topics of interest that students may encounter in their work in rural education. Participants are encouraged to come to each session with questions they may have in relation to each topic. A rural education academic will be available to discuss and provide feedback to participants in each of these sessions. 

Being a Rural Education Academic

These workshop sessions aim to demystify some of the common scenarios you may face with your research working as an academic in rural education.

Session 1:Communicating and Disseminating Research to External Stakeholders

You have all these wonderful findings, now how do you communicate with people who may have an interest in your findings? Disseminating your research to academics is different to disseminating your research to politicians, community members, participants, and industry groups. What are some of the strategies you can use to communicate your research in these settings, and what media can you use to disseminate your work? How is writing for a newspaper different to writing for a community magazine?


Session 2:Communicating and Disseminating Research to an Academic Audience

Navigating ways to disseminate rural education research findings in an academic environment can be challenging.  What are some strategies for disseminating research to an audience that is unfamiliar with rural research? What are some of the most appropriate journals and what are they looking for? How can we widen our target audience for rural education research?


Session 3:Where to After Graduate Studies in Rural Education?

Thinking ahead and planning your career in rural education research is important in this competitive job market. As a rural education scholar, what can you do to prepare yourself for the job market? How can you make your work stand out in the crowd? How can you incorporate your rural education research into your job? Where should you be looking for jobs?

Doing Rural Education Research

These workshops focus on the process of doing rural education research. They consider some of the important issues that you will encounter in your work.


Session 1: Rural Education Research Ethics

Researching rural communities comes with a set of unique ethical challenges.  How do you ensure anonymity in small communities? How do you recruit participants? How do you report back to participants & interested parties? How do you negotiate difficult topics and issues raised in the research? How do you manage relationships with participants both during and after the research?


Session 2: Working with Theory in Rural Education Research

Theory is an important part of education research. What is theory and its place in rural education research? What are some of the theories you are thinking about using in your work? How does it relate to rural education research? What are some of the theoretical frameworks in rural education? How can we work with these?


Session 3:Methodological Considerations in Rural Education Research

There are many considerations when thinking about approaching rural education research. How can we ensure that rural people and communities matter?  What methodological approaches can we use to ensure there is a focus on the rural? How can we move beyond deficit approaches & viewing the rural as more than the place a study occurs?