Category / PG research

This part of the blog features news and information for postgraduate research students and supervisors

BU Researcher Development Programme – March 2012

Sessions for the BU Researcher Development Programme in March 2012 are below. Booking is essential as places are limited – details of how to book are listed under each session.

Statistics Surgeries: Individual statistics advice with Dr John Beavis

Critical Thinking: Professor Jenny Moon

Action Research: Dr Ann Bevan

Using Endnote/Endnote Web: Emma Crowley

Research Philosophy: Professor Barry Richards

  • Date: Wednesday 28 March 2012
  • Time: 10:30-12:30
  • Room: PG22

Booking: graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk

Vice-Chancellor Doctoral (Fee Waive) Scholarship

We are delighted to announce the launch of the 2012 Vice-Chancellor Doctoral (Fee Waive Scholarships) which will offer support to up to 60 outstanding postgraduate research students.  The Scholarships will provide a full fee waive for up to 36 months in the case of full-time students and exceptionally 48 months in the case of part-time students.  Stipends (to cover living expenses) are not included in the scholarships and these must be provided by the student themselves or by a sponsor. 

This Scholarship programme will open on 1 March 2012 and will roll until 30 June 2012.  There are up to 60 scholarships available, which are nominally split evenly between the 6 Academic Schools.  However, individual schools may take up more or less than their allocated 10 scholarships as available.  There is no requirement for a School to accept candidates.

The focus of the Vice-Chancellor Doctoral (Fee Waive) Scholarships is on the outstanding nature of the candidate who must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • All candidates must demonstrate truly outstanding qualities and be motivated to complete a PhD in 3 years full-time or 4 years part-time.
  • All candidates must satisfy the University’s minimum doctoral entry criteria for studentships of an honors degree at First Class (1) and/or an appropriate Masters degree or equivalent .
  • An IELTS (Academic) score of 7.0 minimum is essential for candidates for whom English is not their first language.

In addition to satisfying basic entry criteria, BU will look closely at the qualities, skills and background of each candidate and what they can bring to their chosen research project in order to ensure successful and timely completion.  It is important to consider that in most cases the interpretation of ‘truly outstanding’ is likely to be those candidates with a First Class (Hons) degrees and/or a distinction at Masters, with clear documented evidence of drive, commitment and relevant skills.

Only the most outstanding candidates will be supported.  Full details and criteria are set out in the BU VC Scholarship 2012 – Policy document. Staff and potential candidates are asked to check the eligibility criteria carefully before applying. 

The scholarships will be awarded, via the process set out below, to candidates who meet the eligibility criteria, have the support of their supervisory teams, are accepted by the relevant Academic School and must be approved by the School’s Dean and UET.  The process will be managed by the Graduate School.  The Vice-Chancellor Doctoral Scholarships applications (on the appropriate application form downloaded from the Graduate School website from Thursday 1 March 2012) should be submitted to Dr Fiona Knight (Graduate School Academic Manager) no later than 30 June 2012 who will circulate to each School for approval.

BU’s Twin Track Approach to Funding over 100 Doctoral Opportunities

BU is committed as part of Strategic Plan BU2018 to investing in the postgraduate researcher community, increasing student numbers and to create a vibrant and stimulating postgraduate research environment within our key areas of outstanding, or emerging, research strength. During February and March 2012, BU will advertise 100 doctoral opportunities.  This will be guaranteed annually thereafter as part of BU2018. These postgraduate research students will contribute to world-class research in recognized areas of academic excellence and societal impact. BU has a twin track approach to funding doctoral students, the two elements are outlined below :

Fully-funded and Match-funded BU Studentships supported via central investment from RAE QR Funds.  In 2012, we have 44 BU Studentships to allocate and the internal competition for Studentship Projects is currently in process. 

  • Full details can be found here
  • Deadline for internal completion is 29 February 2012, funded projects will be advertised from 1 April 2012 with a closing date for applications of 31 May 2012.
  • Existing and established principles apply to these full time studentships including fee waivers, student bursary (including match-funded student bursary) and bench fees. 
  • Candidates apply to approved/funded projects, with an emphasis on attracting outstanding research talent.  UET and Graduate School approval of all candidates remains in place to secure BU’s investment

Vice-Chancellor Doctoral (Fee Waive) Scholarships provide outstanding students wishing to study with a particular supervisor or research team the opportunity of applying directly and developing a project with the supervisory team. 

  • Full details will be posted here on 1 March 2012.
  • The scheme will open on 1 March 2012 and will roll until 30 June 2012.
  • These Scholarships provide a fee waiver only and will be allocated by School’s to outstanding applicants on the basis of merit. 
  • Projects are developed and approved post-award, and within 3 months of the award, or the offer of a Scholarship will be withdrawn. 
  • They are eligible for full-time study (and exceptionally part-time) by both UK/EU and overseas students, and those with industry/business/government sponsorship are particularly encouraged to apply. 
  • Allocations will be approved by the relevant School Dean, Graduate School and UET to secure BU’s investment. Schools are not required to accept candidates on this scheme if they choose.

Full details of both schemes are available on the BU Research Blog.  If you have any queries, please contact Professor Tiantian Zhang or Dr Fiona Knight  in The Graduate School (graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk).

Second showing of the PHD Movie on 15 February!

Love PHD Comics? Then come to the screening of The PHD Movie, hosted at BU on Wednesday 15 February!

BU first screened the movie in December but due to popular demand a second screening has now been arranged!

The PHD Movie is being shown at universities around the world and premiered at UCLA in Los Angeles in September. It has also been shown at Harvard University, Yale University, University of Sydney, CERN, and multiple screenings at the Max Planck Institute.

In the UK the movie is only scheduled to be screened at UCL, Oxford, Glasgow, Cranfield, Bristol, Imperial College, York, Newcastle, Liverpool, Birmingham, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Brunel and Bournemouth!

The PHD Movie is a live-action adaptation of the popular online comic strip by Jorge Cham (PHD Comics). It was filmed on location at and was produced in partnership with the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

The film introduces audiences to the unique and funny culture of Academia and follows four graduate students (Cecilia, Mike, Tajel and the “Nameless Grad Student”) as they struggle to find balance between research, teaching and their personal lives with humor and heart.

The Movie was produced and directed by and stars real PhD students and researchers.

The second Bournemouth screening will be held on Wednesday 15 February between 12:30-2pm in the Allesbrook Lecture Theatre on the Talbot Campus.

It is free to attend and lunch will be provided! 😀

Places at the screening are limited so complete the booking form below if you’d like to come along.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Hello everybody!

I am Tiantian Zhang, the new Head of the Graduate School,  I started on 16 Jan and have enjoyed the first two weeks at BU! Just tell you a little bit about myself – I graduated from Liaoning University with a BSc in Environmental Biology and worked as a research scientist in the areas of Environmental Science for 5 years in China before obtaining a MPhil degree in Environmental Biology at Middlesex University and a PhD degree in Cryobiology at University of Bedfordshire. I worked as a post-doc and a senior research fellow before I was made Reader in 2003 and Professor in 2005. I was the Director of LIRANS Institute of Research in the Applied Natural Sciences at University of Bedfordshire before joining BU. My work at University of Bedfordshire also involved working closely with the Research Graduate School on developing frameworks for doctoral training and Personal Development Planning programs and other cross institutional initiatives.

My research interests are in the areas of cryopreservation of gametes and reproductive cells and its applications in biomedicine, conservation and animal reproduction. The work has mainly been focused on cryopreservation of reproductive cells and embryos of aquatic species, effect of cryopreservation on genome and metabolic activities of reproductive cells and fish stem cell culture development and cryopreservation. My research also included ecotoxicology studies using fish cell lines and other biological materials. My cryobiology research was funded by funding bodies such as  the Wellcome Trust and the European Commission. The outcome of my research has led to 129 publications and 86 conference presentation. I have supervised 15 research students to completion and is currently the Director of Studies of  6 PhD students.

I have enjoyed meeting many people during my first two weeks at BU and is looking forward to meeting  as many of you as possible in the near future! I am also looking forward to working with you all in taking the Graduate School forward.

See you soon!

Best wishes

Tiantian

PGR students – sign up to the BU Research Themes!

The BU Research Themes were launched in December at the first of the BU-wide Fusion events. The Themes are societally-led, encourage cross-School working and collaboration, and will be the main vehicle through which BU research is presented externally in future.

We’re now encouraging postgraduate research students to sign up to one or more of the Themes! This is a great way to get involved in the BU research environment and to meet other academics and students from across the University.

There are eight BU Research Themes:

  • Creative & Digital Economies
  • Culture & Society
  • Entrepreneurship & Economic Growth
  • Environmental Change & Biodiversity
  • Green Economy & Sustainability
  • Health, Wellbeing & Aging
  • Leisure & Recreation
  • Technology & Design

If you would like to join one or more of the Themes, then complete the form below and I will add you to the list.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Your School / Professional Service (required)

Staff or PGR student? (required)
StaffPGR

Please select the themes that you are interested in (required)

PGR Workshops: February 2012

Sessions for the BU Researcher Development Programme in February 2012 are below. Booking is essential as places are limited – details of how to book are listed under each session.

Details of January’s programme can be found here.

Statistics Surgeries: Individual statistics advice with Dr John Beavis

Making your Mark at Conferences: Presenting your work at Conferences and making the most of the networking availability – Dr David Osselton

Introduction to Focus Groups: Focus Groups – how to prepare; run and maximise the research benefits – Prof Edwin van Teijlingen

Public Engagement Workshop: How to get started in public engagement – how it is of benefit to your research – Dr Tom Wakeford

Research Impact: How to maximise the impact of your research – Professor Mark Hadfield

Introduction to Mixed Methods Research: Introduction to Mixed Methods Research – Dr Carol Bond

Introduction to Case Studies: Using Case Studies in your Research – Professor Alan Fyall

The PhD Movie: A chance to see the second showing of the PhD Movie – with free lunch!

Using Archival Material – Short Course: Further details to follow. Professor Hugh Chignell

Research Philosophy: Understanding research philosophies – Professor Barry Richards

These sessions are primarily aimed at new PGRs however all PGRs and ECRs are welcome.

Second chance to see The PHD Movie!

Love PHD Comics? Then come to the screening of The PHD Movie, hosted at BU on Wednesday 15 February!

BU first screened the movie in December but due to popular demand a second screening has now been arranged!

The PHD Movie is being shown at universities around the world and premiered at UCLA in Los Angeles in September. It has also been shown at Harvard University, Yale University, University of Sydney, CERN, and multiple screenings at the Max Planck Institute.

In the UK the movie is only scheduled to be screened at UCL, Oxford, Glasgow, Cranfield, Bristol, Imperial College, York, Newcastle, Liverpool, Birmingham, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Brunel and Bournemouth!

The PHD Movie is a live-action adaptation of the popular online comic strip by Jorge Cham (www.phdcomics.com). It was filmed on location at and was produced in partnership with the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).

The film introduces audiences to the unique and funny culture of Academia and follows four graduate students (Cecilia, Mike, Tajel and the “Nameless Grad Student”) as they struggle to find balance between research, teaching and their personal lives with humor and heart.

The Movie was produced and directed by and stars real PhD students and researchers.

The second Bournemouth screening will be held on Wednesday 15 February between 12:30-2pm in the Allesbrook Lecture Theatre on the Talbot Campus.

It is free to attend and lunch will be provided! 😀

Places at the screening are limited so complete the booking form below if you’d like to come along.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Launch of the PhD Studentship Competition 2012!

The deadline for this competition is 29 February 2012 and we look forward to recieving your applications!

 We are delighted to announce the launch of the 2012 BU PhD Studentship competition for candidates starting in October 2012 in which there will be 44 studentships available across three parallel strands: (1) Matched Funding; (2) Fully Funded; and (3) Education & Pedagogic Research.  An overview of the three strands is provided below.

The studentships will be awarded to supervisory teams on the basis of a competitive process across the whole of BU led by Professor Matthew Bennett (PVC Research, Enterprise & Internationalization) and managed the Graduate School.  Applications will be assessed and awards made by a cross University Panel consisting of the academic members of UET and two members of the BU Professoriate. In selecting proposals for funding emphasis will be placed on the excellence of the research and quality of proposal in the first instance.  Strategic fit with REF and Societal Impact will also be assessed.

Only the best projects in each strand will be funded and proceed to advert. Full details and criteria are set out in the BU Studentships Policy.  Staff are asked to check the eligibility criteria carefully before applying. 

Applications (on the appropriate application form downloaded from the BU Research Blog) should be submitted to Dr Fiona Knight (Graduate School Academic Manager) no later than 29 February 2012, who will circulate to the judging panel for consideration.  The panel will individually score each proposal and meet formally to select the successful projects.

Good luck!

Strand 1 – Matched Funded Studentships

  • A total of 32 matched funded studentships are available.
  • Matched-funding (50% equivalent to £21k over three years) may come from:
    • Industry/business partners,
    • Government and non-government organizations,
    • Academic Schools,
    • NHS,
    • Research Councils, or
    • Other external bodies.
  • In seeking match-funding and developing the associated projects applicants are encouraged to avoid a local or regional focus.
  • Priority may be given to applications that involve supervisors from two or more Schools and/or those from early career researchers.
  • All proposals should match clearly to one of the eight BU Research Challenges.
  • Applicants are encouraged to discuss potential applications to this funding strand with Deputy Dean Research or equivalent within their School.
  • Please submit proposal on Application Form (Strands 1 & 2)

Strand 2 – Fully-Funded Studentships

  • A total of 6 fully funded studentships are available.
  • These are exceptional awards for elite, highly original, timely and non-applied or “blue-sky” research projects where there is no potential for match funding.  Priority will be given to those areas where there is a clear strategic driver for a particular REF Unit of Assessment, Group or Centre and/or the applicant can demonstrate an immense societal impact.
  • All proposals should match clearly to one of the eight BU Research Challenges.
  • Applicants are encouraged to discuss potential applications to this funding strand with Professor Matthew Bennett.
  • Please submit proposal on Application Form (Strands 1 & 2)

Strand 3 – Education and pedagogic research studentship

  • A total of 6 studentships with an educational or pedagogic focus are available.
  • Matched-funding (50% equivalent to £21k over three years) may come from:
    • Industry/business partners,
    • Government and non-government organizations,
    • Academic Schools,
    • NHS,
    • Research Councils, or
    • Other external bodies.
  • Proposals must be able to demonstrate clearly how the research will benefit fusion within BU and have a wider impact on society or the HE sector.
  • Priority may be given to applications that involve supervisors from two or more Schools and/or those from early career researchers.
  • Applicants are encouraged to discuss potential application with Professor Tim McIntyre-Bhatty.
  • Please submit proposal on Application Form (Strand 3)

To help applicants with their proposals John Wakeford, an external academic who now runs grant writing workshops, will be coming to the university on 31st January and 1st February to run 1 day sessions.  If you would like a place on either day please contact Susan Dowdle.

PGR Workshops: January 2012

Sessions for the BU Researcher Development Programme in  January 2012 are below.  Booking is essential as places are limited, details of how to book are listed under each session.

PGR Induction Dr Fiona Knight

Introduction to BU’s academic and professional support for your research degree

Can social media enhance my research profile? Susan Dowdle

Using Twitter, blogs, social citation to raise your research profile.  Discussion on how to use Web 2.0 technologies professionally and some top tips on making connections and raising your profile.

Introduction to Education Practice: for Postgraduate Research Students (PGRs) Linda Byles

This 3 day event is designed to prepare Post-Graduate Research students to undertake their teaching responsibilities

Grant Writing Workshop for Early Career Researchers Martin Pickard (external)

This workshop is aimed at early career researchers and phd students in the mid to late stages of their phd, starting to think about grant writing.  More details on the event can be found in this blog post.

  • Date: 26 January
  • Time: 9:30 – 17:00
  • Room: K103, Kimmeridge House
  • Booking:  All bookings for this event are via Susan Dowdle

Introduction to Mixed Methods Research Dr Carol Bond

These sessions are primarily aimed at new PGRs however all PGRs and ECRs are welcome.

PGR Development Scheme 2011/12

The Graduate School PGR Development Scheme is open to all BU postgraduate researchers (PGRs) irrespective of mode of study (full-time / part-time) or funding status (BU studentships / externally funded / self funded).

Individual awards will provide financial support of normally up to £2,000 (and exceptionally £5,000) for research activities related to an individual PGR’s research project or personal development.  It is envisaged that each year approximately 15 awards will be made.

Examples of research activities covered by the Scheme include:

  • Research Activities
    • Conference attendance
    • Additional fieldwork
    • Other activities required to advance research e.g. visiting major libraries, museums, other research institutions (UK, EU or International)
    • Preparation of specialist material or data
    • Research consumables and equipment (providing it is clear these would not normally be purchased by the School as part of the research degree)
  • Developmental Activities
    • Research development e.g. attending external training events specific to research activity
    • Personal development e.g. attending external personal development training events
  • Networking
    • Organisation of an academic conference at BU with external participants;
    • Attendance at external networking events leading to advance of the research
    • Publications or dissemination of research

You should also map the proposed activity onto the relevant sub-domains of the Vitae Researcher Development Framework (RDF):

Knowledge & Intellectual Abilities A1 – Knowledge base A2 – Cognitive abilities A3 – Creativity
Personal Effectiveness B1 – Personal qualities B2 – Self-management B3 – Professional & career development
Research Governance C1 – Professional conduct C2 – Research management C3 – Finance, funding & resources
Engagement, Influence & Impact D1 – Working with others D2 – Communication & dissemination D3 – Engagement & impact

 Awards will only cover direct costs including travel; subsistence; training or development costs) and all applications will need to include a precise breakdown of costs.  Applications should be supported by the Supervisory Team and the relevant Deputy Dean (Research & Enterprise) of the relevant AcademicSchool.

 There will be two competitions per annum.  PGRs wishing to apply must submit a completed GS PGR Development Scheme – Application Form to the Graduate School Academic Manager by the following deadlines:

  • 29 February 2012
  • 31 October 2012

Applications to the Scheme will be reviewed independently and all decisions on funding will be made by the Graduate School. 

 For further information please read the GS PGR Development Scheme – Policy.

PGR Training Workshops – Dec 2011

Sessions for the BU Researcher Development Programme in  December 2011 are as follows:

Research Ethics Professor Holger Schutkowski

  • Date: Wednesday 7 December
  • Time: 10:30-12:30
  • Room: PG22
  • Prior booking essential by emailing graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk
  • Please include one line about your research ethics issues or concerns

 Researchers must Write Professor Matthew Bennett

  • Date: Wednesday 7 December
  • Time: 14:00 – 15:30
  • Room: PG22
  • Prior booking essential by emailing graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk
  • Basic introduction to the importance of writing in research

Academic Writing Sue Mitchell (external)

  • Date: Both the Tuesday and Wednesday sessions are now full
  • Time: 09:oo  – 17:00
  • Room: PG22
  • Prior booking essential by emailing graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk
  • Academic Writing Skills: improving your publications; grants

These sessions are primarily aimed at new PGRs however all PGRs and ECRs are welcome.  Prior booking is essential on some sessions where places are limited.

PGR students – interested in some funding to travel?

Santander provides BU with funding for research students or staff to travel to universities in the Santander overseas network to work on a specific piece of work and develop links.  There are 4 x £5000 scholarships available with a deadline of 9th December.

This is an excellent opportunity to travel to other countries such as the USA or South America and enhance your PhD by working with international researchers in your field and potentially enhancing your future career by developing international networks.  Priority is given to research students and early career researchers.

Details on how to apply are available in this earlier blog post.

PGR Events – Researcher Development Programme

Sessions for the BU Researcher Development Programme in  November/December 2011 are as follows:

Managing your Thesis workshop (Part 2) Using MS Office 2010 to manage your thesis and other documents facilitated by Su Kensley

    • Date: Wednesday 30 November
    • Time: 10:00-13:00
    • Room: S103
    • Prior booking essential (max 20 places) by emailing itskills@bournemouth.ac.uk

Research Ethics Professor Holger Schutkowski

  • Date: Wednesday 7 December
  • Time: 10:30-12:30
  • Room: PG22
  • Prior booking essential by emailing graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk
  • Please include one line about your research ethics issues or concerns

 Researchers must Write Professor Matthew Bennett

  • Date: Wednesday 7 December
  • Time: 14:00 – 15:30
  • Room: PG22
  • Prior booking essential by emailing graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk
  • Basic introduction to the importance of writing in research

Academic Writing Sue Mitchell (external)

  • Date: Wednesday 14 December
  • Time: 09:oo  – 17:00
  • Room: PG22
  • Prior booking essential by emailing graduateschool@bournemouth.ac.uk
  • Academic Writing Skills: improving your publications; grants

These sessions are primarily aimed at new PGRs however all PGRs and ECRs are welcome.  Prior booking is essential on some sessions where places are limited.

BU Researcher Development Programme – November 2011

Sessions for the BU Researcher Development Programme in  November 2011 are as follows:

Statistics Surgery: Individual statistics advice with Dr John Beavis

    • Date: Every Wednesday
    • Time: max 45 minutes consultation –10:00-16:00
    • Room: tbc
    • Prior booking essential through Staff Development

Managing your Thesis workshop (Part 1 & 2) Using MS Office 2007 to manage your thesis and other documents facilitated by Su Kensley

    • Date: Wednesday 2 November and Wednesday 9 November
    • Time: 10:00-13:00
    • Room: MG08
    • Prior booking essential (max 12 places) by emailing itskills@bournemouth.ac.uk

Literature Reviews Undertaking your literature review with Professor Adele Ladkin

    • Date: Wednesday 16 November
    • Time: 10:30-11:30
    • Room: PG22
    • No booking needed

BU Research Strategy & REF Overview of research at BU and its wider context, introducing the REF with Professor Matthew Bennett

    • Date: Wednesday 16 November
    • Time: 13:00-14:30
    • Room: PG22
    • No booking needed

Introduction to Qualitative Research The main aspects of qualitative research with Professor Kate Galvin

    • Date: Wednesday 23 November
    • Time: 10:30-12:30
    • Room: PG22
    • No booking needed

Introduction to Quantitative Research The main aspects of quantitative research with Professor Adrian Newton

    • Date: Wednesday 23 November
    • Time: 13:30-15:00
    • Room: PG22
    • No booking needed

Managing your Thesis workshop (Part 1 & 2) Using MS Office 2010 to manage your thesis and other documents facilitated by Su Kensley

    • Date: Wednesday 23 November and Wednesday 30 November
    • Time: 10:00-13:00
    • Room: S103
    • Prior booking essential (max 20 places) by emailing itskills@bournemouth.ac.uk

These sessions are primarily aimed at new PGRs however all PGRs and ECRs are welcome.  Prior booking is essetial on some sessions where places are limited.

If you have any questions about the sessions, please contact Dr Fiona Knight or Susan Dowdle.

 

BU Researcher Development Framework

BU has adopted the VITAE Researcher Development Framework to help you identify your strengths and prioritise for personal and career development, inform discussions with the supervisory teams and consider what skills and experiences will enhance career prospects and how to articulate capabilities to future employers.

 By monitoring and recording your development activities within the RDF, you will be able to:

  • aid self-reflection and set aspirational goals
  • choose the most appropriate formal and informal development
  • assess opportunities provided by BU and look for development opportunities externally
  • prepare for one-to-one progress reviews, appraisals and career
  • prepare for development conversations with Supervisory Team
  • consider how skills and experiences will enhance career prospects
  • highlight, articulate and evidence the transferability of their skills in their CV, in job applications and at interviews.

As a Postgraduate Researcher at BU, you are required to engage in a personal programme of researcher development throughout the duration of your enrolment. This is not formally credit bearing, however you are required to compile evidence of specific training and development courses undertaken, as well as evidence of personal development through independent activities undertaken as part of your research.  The process is as follows:

  1. Discussion of individual training needs with supervisory team at initial supervisory meetings to prioritise development activities throughout the course of the research.
  2. Identify most appropriate mechanism for developing identified training needs
  3. Record development on overview sheet and complete record sheet for each development activity
     – outline the activity, the skills gained from the activity and how the skills can be applied
    –  Supervisors to be sign off
  4. Review individual training and development needs as part of the Annual Monitoring Process
  5. Develop and maintain portfolio of research activities

Many generic research methodology and skills development sessions are offered centrally by the GraduateSchool and RDU and details will be communicated via the Research Blog.

 Specific and in depth methodological training should be offered by the Academic Schools or identified externally.  Other independent development activities may include:

  • Attendance at externally organised Researcher Development activities (e.g. Vitae events)
  • Participation in specific training related to individual research projects
  • Participation in internal Seminars and Conferences
  • Participation at external Seminars and Conferences
  • Publication of papers
  • Wider research activities – organisation of seminars, conferences, etc
  • Public engagement & outreach activities

Vitae and the Researcher Development Framework

Vitae is an organisation set up to promote career development in both postgraduate researchers and academic staff.  They have recently launched the Researcher Development Framework which is intended to help people monitor their skills and plan their personal development.  At BU we will be using this framework to format the training on offer for the postgraduate research students and academic staff.

The Vitae website is an excellent resource and the organisation regularly runs free training events specifically aimed at PGRs.  Upcoming events include Effective Researcher – The end is in sight aimed at students close to the completion of their PhD.

The Researcher Development Framework (RDF) is the professional development framework to realise the potential of researchers.  The RDF is a tool for planning, promoting and supporting the personal, professional and career development of researchers in higher education.  It was designed following interviews with many successful researchers across the sector and articulates the knowledge, behaviours and attributes of a successful researcher. 

There is a planner available on the Vitae website to help you assess which stage you are at with your skills and a tutorial providing guidance on how to use the framework.

Top 10 tips from researchers on using the Researcher Development Framework (RDF):

1. You might choose to use the RDF for short term as well as long term development. The RDF can be used in planning for your long term career ambitions but also to make a feasible short term plan. It can be useful to imagine your long term ambitions in order to focus your career path however the reality of progressing through to the higher phases may be more difficult to plan. In the short term, making decisions about how to progress to the next phase or what sub-domains are most important for you will be easier. Try to be realistic when setting these short term goals.

2. Use the RDF to highlight your strengths and areas for development and how these might be used to benefit/influence your personal, professional and career development.

3. Use the RDF to highlight your applicable and transferable skills. This is important for career progression within or outside academia.

4. Prioritise those areas which are most relevant. You don’t have to try to develop in all the areas of the RDF at once. There may be some sub-domains/descriptors where there is less relevance in progressing through the phases for you.

5. Draw on experiences outside of work to evidence your capabilities.

6. Progression to the highest phase in a descriptor will not be applicable to everyone but being aware of the possibilities can aid personal and career development.

7. Talk to others to get their views about your strengths and capabilities. Your supervisor, manager, peers, family and friends are a great source of information to find out more about yourself. Talk to them about how they perceive your capabilities. By understanding how others view you, you will be able to make more informed choices about your future.

8. To move from one phase to the next why not explore attending courses. These courses may be run at a local level (within your University) or may only be run nationally or internationally so awareness of opportunities for training is important. Vitae also run a wide range of courses which address many aspects of personal and career development.

9. Some phases may only be reached through experience and practice however good self-awareness and professional development planning will aid the process.

10. Networking is likely to enable you to reach more experienced phases.

BU research features in the THE!

Congratulations to BU PhD student Adil Saeed from DEC’s Sustainable Design Research Centre! Adil’s research featured in the Times Higher Education today – pg 15 of the printed publication as part of the Campus Round-up section.

Adil is pictured at the Tank Museum at Bovington with some additional information on the relationship between BU and the Museum and an outline of Adil’s research.

You can access the online story here: http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?sectioncode=26&storycode=417729&c=1

We previously ran a story on the blog about Adil’s research and the close links between BU and the Tank Museum which you can read here: Sustainable Methodology of Conserving Large Historic Vehicles in a Museum Environment.