Conferences are an integral part of academic life, but more often than not, the pressure of having to present at a conference and the focus on getting the papers approved for presentation can be quite tedious, overwhelming; even scary to some. However, attending conferences have a lot of advantages, a few of which are discussed below.
One of the most immediate advantages of attending conferences is getting to know other people in the field. Like minded people are a pool of great ideas, and conferences are the best venues to meet them because they might share your worldview in a lot of ways. You can also meet people who work in another field and use the opportunity to get to know them better, because they might be able to give advice on topics from their field. Networking is as important in academic circles as it is for job hunting.
Get To Know The Latest Research Trends
Conferences provide a unique opportunity: to know about the latest findings in a field even before getting published in journals. Researchers might also give insight into work that they are currently doing and present preliminary findings. These may not be conclusive research findings, but they can definitely help give you ideas about what people are currently working on and be a great inspiration on your research.
Improve Communication And Presentation Skills
Presentation and communication skills are very important academic requirements that can be honed only by doing so. Soft skills are a major requirement in all walks of life, and conferences give a chase to practice those skills. Rehearsing multiple times and actually presenting a conference in front of a live audience can definitely make you more comfortable in doing so. You can come to know things about your speech like the speed at which you talk, the number of pauses you take and the amount of detail you put into an explanation. Communication skills can also be improved by answering questions at the end of the presentation and chatting with other attendees.
This might be overlooked in the tension of attending the conference, but going to a conference can definitely be a fun activity if you want it to be. Even though conferences are more of a work event than a leisure event, you can find fun activities in the process like meeting people of the place, trying out the food and going to tourist destinations nearby. There may also be social functions held at conferences, like dinners, parties or trips. Even though there is the off chance of it being boring and dull, these events are most commonly relaxed and friendly affairs. You can gain the company of others and even make new friends.