Researcher development: Research Futures
Research Futures provides postgraduate research students with a full programme of training and development throughout their PhD or MPhil studies. The main programme is delivered at the Edinburgh Campus and contains a wide range of courses pitched at various levels of expertise. For those students studying at other campuses there are also dedicated programmes available. Course sessions are typically delivered in three hour sessions facilitated by experts.
First year students
First year research students are invited to an induction course and reception to mark the beginning of their programme. During the first year, the Research Futures Research Student Workshop Programme covers areas such as presenting your research, research writing and communication for researchers. First years are strongly encouraged to take part in the two day intensive course ‘how to be an effective researcher’. This provides strategies for managing your research project and your relationship with your supervisor.
During the following year, courses such as project management, issues in research and publishing research outcomes build upon the skills gained in the first year.
Final year students
During the final year, workshops covering viva preparation, business skills, career management and advanced presentations skills help prepare research students for finishing the PhD or MPhil and taking the next career step. Final year students are strongly encouraged to participate in one of the National or Edinburgh local grad schools. This is a three to five-day residential course that provides an intensive range of exercises to give an insight into the research student’s potential career direction.
Some workshop materials are available online. There is also a specially developed online resource, ‘the perfect doctoral experience – how close can you get?’ This material covers topics such as completing your Doctorate on time and managing your relationship with your supervisor.
Learning enhancement and development skills (LEADS)
This programme of courses is designed to provide research students with the necessary skills for university teaching. The programme will help develop the knowledge, skills and confidence to be an effective teacher or tutor in a range of contexts. Each session focuses on a different aspect of teaching and learning relevant to anyone new to teaching. Most sessions last for two hours and are based on small group work and practical, task-focused activities.