Speaking Topics

Dr. Michelle Drouin offers a wide range of talks related to technology, social media, relationships, sexuality, sexual victimization and assault, polyvictimization, and digital safety and responsibility. For every speaking engagement, Dr. Drouin makes the following commitments to organizers:

Dr. Drouin uses a unique, interactive polling software to gather data from the talk. Using their own wifi-enabled or cellular devices, participants respond to questions she poses during the presentation, and they can even submit feedback!
Dr. Drouin can provide a summary of the polling data to conference organizers (if requested). This aspect of her presentation is always really well-received by participants, and they enjoy seeing how the polling data is summarized into a 1- to 2-page report.

Each talk will be specially tailored towards the audience.  Dr. Drouin will work with organizers to gather information about audience characteristics as well as pinpoint the goal of the talk.  If your speaker isn’t asking, “What’s the goal of this talk?” and “Who is the audience?” you need a different speaker!
For any talk where learning about the topic is the primary goal, Dr. Drouin can perform online pre- and post-tests to document learning gains related to talk topics (e.g., digital safety and responsibility, sexual assault and victimization, and digital evidence).
Note: This usually requires a wifi-enabled room, and every participant must have a wifi-enabled or cellular device.

“Thank you for coming to speak with us at the SAPR training. Your presentation was awesome!”

 “Thank you again for your presentation— it was extremely insightful. I also appreciate the follow up documentation you have sent us to reference.”

“Thank you, wonderful presentation. I’d appreciate the slides/data from the research your mentioned.”

“Thank you for coming to speak with us at the SAPR training. Your presentation was awesome!”

 “Thank you again for your presentation— it was extremely insightful. I also appreciate the follow up documentation you have sent us to reference.”

“Thank you, wonderful presentation. I’d appreciate the slides/data from the research your mentioned.”

Social Media Policy & Digital Citizenship for Adults

Most adults have gone from absolutely no training or monitoring of their use of social media and stepped into a culture (that pertains to public employees, especially) in which their language and behavior is subject to scrutiny from the general public. Additionally, social media policy provisions are either non-existent or difficult to understand. In this talk, I will explain your social media policy in a concise and direct way, emphasizing what does and does not violate the social media policies of your organization. Additionally, I will review e the nine elements of digital citizenship? While some schools are scrambling to teach some type of digital responsibility to youth, adults have been left behind, trying to figure out how to navigate our online lives without any guidance or education. In this talk, we explore how the nine elements of digital responsibility apply to adult online behavior with a focus on digital law, digital rights and responsibilities, and digital security (self-protection).

Potential Audience: This course will be especially valuable during recruitment, orientation, or ongoing training/continuing education for both college students and public and private sector employees. The course can be tailored as an educational module, with pre- and post-test scores for participants. Dr. Drouin will provide a summative report of the content and learning gains of participants.

Technology and Social Media: New Routes for Victimization?

Technology has emerged as a new medium through which people can victimize others. Stalking, sexual coercion, threats of violence, revenge porn, coercion, catfishing—these are just some of the ways in which people are using technology to threaten and harm others, often intimate relationship partners. In this talk, I will talk about some of the latest research on technology-mediated violence and assault, with a focus on sexual coercion, revenge porn, and technology-mediate intimate partner violence.

Potential Audience: This talk is especially useful for practitioners who serve victims of sexual assault and violence, including mental health counselors, sexual assault response coordinators (SARCs), victim advocates, medical personnel, and law enforcement (and those who direct and create policy for these personnel) as well as those who are working on legal cases that feature digital communication between victims and perpetrators, such as attorneys, judges, and policy makers. The talk can also be tailored as an educational module, with pre- and post-test scores for participants. Dr. Drouin will provide a summative report of the content and learning gains of participants.

Facebook Fired!? How to Avoid Social Media Missteps and Career-killers

What’s on your digital billboard? Anything that might cost you your job, your education, or your reputation? In this interactive talk, I will present the latest research on how social media is affecting educational and career opportunities, using recent cases highlighted in the media to illustrate how social media missteps have led to dismissals from colleges and employment terminations (especially with public sector employees). I will also overview the Top 5 mistakes people make in their online digital representation and the Top 5 things you can do to improve your own digital brand.

Potential Audience: This course will be especially valuable to new college students, military personnel, and public and private sector employees (during recruitment, orientation, or ongoing training and education). Additionally, I have a separate talk geared towards high school students, especially juniors and seniors that focuses on creating a digital brand that will aid with college admissions.

Social Media 101 for Practitioners: Promises and Perils

This talk will give an overview of the ways in which social media can be used in positive ways within health, wellness, and outreach organizations and also the ways in which social media might be being used by teens and young adults to inflict harm and support unsafe/unhealthy lifestyle choices. I will also cover issues relating to teen and young adult relationship health and wellness, including sexting, sexting coercion, intimate partner violence, and polyvictimization.

Potential Audience: This talk is aimed at practitioners and members of community-based organizations focused on mental health counseling, public health, public safety, education, and law enforcement.

The Sex Talk Your Parents Never Gave You

Sexual education for adults? Is this really necessary? Well, considering your parents never had to navigate their sexual relationships through technology— yes! Yes, it is necessary.  In this age of technology-mediated communication, people are live-streaming sexual assault, engaging in revenge porn and sextortion, and recording others (with and without their knowledge) engaged in lewd acts. In this talk, I will give specific information about navigating sexual relationships in a complex digital world including risks and negative outcomes associated with sexting (especially with casual sex partners). I will also reference research on stereotypical sexualized behaviors, bringing focus to issues of harassment, social norms, and peer acceptance.

Potential Audience: This course will be especially valuable to adult college students, military personnel, and community-based organizations (and practitioners) that serve youth and young adults. This talk can also be adjusted to a younger audience (middle or high school students) to be delivered as part of a sexual education curriculum.

Sexting, Ghosting, & Phubbing: Modern Issues in Couple and Family Relationships

In this interactive presentation, we will explore the ways in which technology is being used to start, maintain, and end romantic relationships, including sexual relationships. I will use the latest research as a springboard to discuss the ways in which technology is interfering with modern couple and family life, from relationships between intimate partners to relationships between family members, including parents’ interactions with their children.

Potential Audience: This is a fantastic learning module for undergraduate and graduate college students (especially those majoring in psychology, social work, health sciences, and counseling) as a supplement to a general curriculum focused on modern issues in romantic and family relationships. This talk is also ideal for practitioners and members of community-based organizations focused on mental health counseling, public health, public safety, education, and law enforcement.

Modern Love: Finding a Signal Within All the Noise

Dating in the modern world is complicated. In this time of endless options and unlimited 24/7 access to everyone, how do we find the one? In this interactive talk, we will explore the pull and addictive properties of smartphones and other technology and how that is affecting modern-day relationships, including romantic relationships, friendships, and even family relationships. I will also present the latest scientific findings related to back burners, phubbing, ghosting, and digital infidelity.

Potential Audience: This is a fantastic ice breaker and highly entertaining talk that all digital natives (and 20 and 30 somethings) will find informative and relevant. Using interactive polling software, the audience members get to know a lot about each other (and themselves) as I guide them through a series of questions aimed at developing a greater understanding of the complexity of modern-day relationships.

Keeping My Child Safe Online: A Guide for Parents and Educators

Before you handed your child a technological device (e.g., a phone, iPad, video games, etc.), did you set some ground rules? Are you sure you know what your child does when they are online? In this talk, I will showcase some of the BEST and WORST of the social media apps—some of which are aimed to protect your child, others of which are pose real risks. I will also describe the importance of and essential elements contained in “technology contracts” that every parent should have with their child before handing them a technological device.

Potential Audience: This talk is great for parents, educators, and community-based organizations serving youth and teens.

Dr. Drouin at TEDxNaperville