On Monday the 5th of June, the Pre-course of ISCOMS 2023 will take place. The Pre-course aims at improving your research skills. To master your research skills, several masterclasses are organised. In addition to that, a lecture about “Your Future at the UMCG”, two speed keynote lectures, a Science Elective and to finish the day a social programme activity will be held. Furthermore, the Pre-course includes a Science Elective and the day will finish with a social programme activity

Below you can find the preliminary programme for the Pre-course of ISCOMS 2023. More will follow soon!


08:15 - 09:00
09:00 - 09:30
Day opening
09:30 - 11:10
Course I
11:10 - 11:50
11:50 - 13:20
Science Elective
13:20 - 14:20
14:20 - 15:50
Course II
16:00 - 17:00
Speed keynote lectures
17:00 - 17:30
Your Future at the UMCG
19:00 - 23:00
Social programme
Speed Keynotes


Prof. H.H. Kampinga, PhD

The abstract of a scientific paper or grant is the gateway to being noted and read. If you do not roll out the red carpet, people will pass by! A good abstract should not only present the essential and sound features of your research and radiate its high quality, but also should advertise why your findings are relevant and how they are relevant.

In this Masterclass, we will have an interactive discussion about the DOs and DONTs in writing a convincing scientific abstract.

If this abstract did not convince you to come to this workshop, you should still come to teach me how to make a better one.

G. Buist PhD

Medical students are supposed to read an enormous amount of information in textbooks, on the internet, and in medical journals. Research is progressing fast, and textbooks often contain dated information. Recent manuscripts provide up-to-date information. However, are we certain that the presented information is valid and should be implemented in patient care? Critical appraisal of a manuscript enables the assessment of the validity of the study results. In this pre-course class, participants will be provided with an approach to critically appraise (clinical) research papers, assess research design, and identify selection bias, information bias and confounding factors. Different research designs will be presented, and strengths and weaknesses will be discussed. Using these different criteria participants will together critically assess a research paper. The results of the assessment will be discussed during the masterclass. This short training will help you to identify the weak and strong points of a scientific paper.

Prof. J.A. Lisman PhD

After years of meticulous study design, data analysis and perfecting your article, there is only one task left; getting your article published!

How do you choose the right scientific journal for your manuscript, and what happens after the submission of your article to your journal of choice? Which features render your paper attractive to the editor and how do you increase the likelihood that your manuscript will be sent out for review? What will convince the reviewers that your work is good and how do you respond to their comments? How do you react to a rejection by the editor, would you accept it or fight for your article?

Prof. J.A. Lisman will help you to find the answers to all these questions in this very interactive Masterclass.

M. El Moumni MD PhD

In 90 minutes, an overview of statistical techniques will be given. Together with the participants several questions will be answered including:

  • What is the link between probability theory and statistics?
  • Why is it important to use descriptive statistics?
  • What is a statistical test? Why should we abandon null-hypothesis significance testing (NHST)?
  • How to interpret effect sizes, confidence intervals and meta-analytic thinking?
  • How do we calculate a sample size?

Based on the article of Selles et al. (2021) analyzing the effect of treatment (operative vs nonoperative) on the functional outcome in patients with a displaced intra-articular distal radial fracture, we will go through several steps of the statistical process. Starting with descriptive statistics, and refreshing the theory of hypothesis testing, we will end up with how to interpret the results of the analyses and integrate the findings across similar studies using meta-analytic thinking.

Emphasis will not be on formulas and mathematics, but on understanding the logic behind the statistical tools to avoid biased conclusions. Depending on the interest of the participants, more time can be spent on elementary or advanced statistics.

Prof. A.J.W. Scheurink PhD

This masterclass will provide strategies for preparing interesting and engaging presentations. The essence of an effective presentation is engaging the audience, capturing their interest by posing an intriguing question, spelling out a methodology for addressing that question and then answering it. A successful presentation provides the audience with cues and information in an orderly structure, allowing them to form expectations on what they will hear and when they will hear it. Tips for doing so, along with tips on what not to do, will be supplied. The presenter will engage participants in a highly interactive format by crafting storylines and structures from material that they provide. The focus of this masterclass will be on oral presentations but at the end we will give some dos and don’ts on poster presentations as well.

Prof. T.S. van der Werf MD PhD

Imagine making your first scientific mark, when your work is accepted for a poster presentation at a scientific meeting.

How can you avoid the pitfall of writing a dense full article, instead of drafting a well-designed poster that reads easily? And that helps you to attract curious conference attendees, and have helpful and challenging discussions about your work?  

In this course, we will discuss the challenges of reaching out to colleagues in the field, and attract the attention of colleagues. By presenting in a condense, attractive, and easily accessible fashion, using real-life examples, in an interactive course.  

Prof. J. Fleer MD PhD & S. Scholtens PhD

You are all biomedical students with an affinity for research, but have you considered doing a PhD? This may be a tough decision. Maybe you already made up your mind and you are aiming for a PhD, but it could very well be that you struggle to decide, because other career choices are luring as well. Perhaps you are hesitant, because of the many stories you heard about how stressful it is to be a PhD student. Or you simply don’t know what a PhD trajectory really entails and therefore you find it difficult to decide on whether to go for it or not. During this masterclass, you will take time to think about a possible future as a PhD student and how to cooperate with stressful situations. We will guide you through some exercises to help you in finding out whether a PhD is something for you


N. Jansen PhD & R. Nuijtinck MD

Do you want your work to have an impact in clinical practice? Follow this masterclass! The number of publications has grown exponentially over the past decade, however implementation of the acquired knowledge lags behind. Implementation of research can not only be realised from governance at higher levels, but starts with those who conduct the research.

We will discuss contemporary examples of what can happen to results of your clinical studies and which challenges researchers encounter once their findings have been published in peer-reviewed journals. This ‘Papers into Practise’ masterclass will discuss how researchers can design research with clinical impact. A practical tool will be provided to optimize your research from start to finish and beyond.

Your Future At the UMCG

If you want to know more about PhD positions and research at the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG), come to Your Future at the UMCG! Prof. Han Moshage, PhD & Maria Camila Almanza from the faculty of Medical Sciences will give a detailed presentation about the possibilities of doing research and the opportunities to gain a PhD position at the UMCG. The session will be concluded with a personal story from a PhD graduate.

Science Elective

M. Versluis MD PhD

In this Science Elective we will analyse a gynaecological episode of the fascinating House MD series. During this Science Elective, a specialist on the topic of the episode will discuss the facts and myths of a House MD episode.

Doctor Gregory House is not known for his commitment and empathy towards his patients, staff, or interns. These characteristics often place him, his colleagues, and patients in problematic situations. However, to what extent is an episode realistic? Are the disease characteristics of the patients like those in real life? And are the used diagnostic tools suitable? What can we learn from this television programme?

These questions will be answered during this interactive course, where participants will be able to judge and discuss the authenticity of a House MD episode.

K. Ho Pian MD PhD

In this Science Elective the illusive mechanisms of our brain and its psychological phenomena will be explored. Star Trek was not far off displaying new scientific devices and techniques which we now are so accustomed to, like computers, touch screens and mobile phones. New technology allowed us to investigate our brains further, and generated new treatment possibilities for our patients.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (i.e. fear of contamination or checking compulsion) is one of those new areas in which technological intervention can bring a solution in heavily affected patients.

Now, what is our current understanding of obsessive-compulsive symptoms and the involved neuronal circuitry? Which technological interventions do we have at our disposal? And how does a patient experience these hightech possibilities?

Live at ISCOMS, a patient expert can answer your questions. So, travel with worp nine to this elective!

Prof. J.C. Billeter PhD

Have you ever considered changing something about the way you behave or look but thought: “I am who I am”? What if such adjustments could already be made before you were born? Should your parents decide whether or not you should change? Would this also be the case if you had inherited a genetic disorder? In this debate, we will discuss the possible pros and cons of genetic modification and designer babies.


E. Weelink MD 

In this Science Elective, you will get an insight in Dutch HEMS work. What entails HEMS and what does a HEMS physician do? By means of taking a typical HEMS shift, you will get acquainted with the Dutch HEMS work. Including technical and non-technical skills, patient cases, and of course also relaxation. Learn about the helicopter view of acute prehospital patient care.