13th December 2018
CCI Facilities and Students

Research training & professional development

Succeed in your goals and plan for the future

As a postgraduate research degree student, you'll attend research and professional development workshops and training as part of the Graduate School Development Programme (GSDP).

We've designed the Graduate School Development Programme (GSDP) to support you at key doctoral milestones, and to help you become an independent researcher and employable doctoral graduate. Our aim is to help you develop the research, professional and transferable skills to succeed in your research degree and beyond.

We work with the best tutors from across the University to bring you high-quality and engaging development opportunities. You'll hear from experienced researchers about their experiences of doing research and the lessons they've learned. 

Starting with the Graduate School induction event, you'll find the GSDP is a great opportunity for you to build networks across the University, meet other postgraduate researchers and discuss your research.

GSDP training and development

We recognise that every postgraduate researcher (PGR) brings their own set of skills and experiences to doctoral study. Whatever stage you're at with your research degree, we have development opportunities to suit your needs.

Our programme is organised into 10 development areas, and most of these are linked to the skills and knowledge domains outlined by the nationally agreed Vitae Researcher Development Framework (RDF).

GSDP development areas

By the time you complete your thesis, you’ll be expected to have developed high-level critical reading and writing skills, as well as the ability to produce high-quality written documents. These workshops offer a supportive environment in which you can work to develop your academic skills.

Identifying relevant literature and referencing it correctly is a crucial skill for PGRs. In these workshops, you’ll learn how to find, manage and keep up-to-date with  literature effectively, and cite references accurately.

Successful researchers are highly skilled at managing research projects and their time. Our workshops in personal effectiveness will help you make the transition to postgraduate research by developing your ability to manage your research and time effectively.

There are certain milestones you will need to navigate during your doctoral journey. Through these workshops, we will demystify the research degree process and help you to understand what is required at each milestone and how to prepare yourself for each stage of your research degree.

Research governance is a core skill for all researchers and our GSDP workshops will help you to understand what is expected of you as a postgraduate researcher, and how to meet your ethical and legal obligations. They will also help you to learn how to organise your research project and keep it running smoothly.

A robust and carefully considered research design is a fundamental part of good research. These workshops will help you understand the philosophical underpinnings of research and kick-start the process of designing your own research project.

Once you have decided on a research question and overall research design, these workshops will help you think carefully about the finer details and consider how you will collect your data to enable you to create a coherent and robust research project.

Whatever type of data you will be collecting, you should take time to plan your data analysis before you start – so you can be confident that you are collecting data that can help you to answer your research question. These workshops will help you plan your data analysis, work with a variety of data types, conduct robust analyses and present your findings effectively.

Excellent research is nothing if we cannot communicate it effectively to other researchers and the wider public. In these workshops, you’ll learn how to skilfully communicate your work and its implications to a wide variety of audiences.

Whatever your goals and motivations, our career development workshops will help you consider and plan your next steps, and make the most of the opportunities available to you during your research degree.

Find out more about the workshops available within each of these development areas in our GSDP Brochure.

I would have no hesitation in recommending these courses to UoP PGRs – especially if an early evening slot that you can attend from home would fit your circumstances. The materials to support the sessions are provided and this often includes the recording of the session. I would have thought this would be particularly valuable to those for whom English is a second language.

Caroline Kovacs, PhD School of Computing

Further training and development

You can access other training and development opportunities as a postgraduate research degree student. 

Subject specific training

As a postgraduate research degree student, you'll need to develop many research and transferable skills. In addition to the research skills you'll gain through your GSDP training, you can make use of subject-specific training in your faculty.

Online training and development

Online training resources for PGR students cover many aspects of the doctoral process and skills for researchers. You can self-enrol onto these self-paced resources on Moodle (our virtual training environment).

Our online training includes:

  • How to search for Research Funding
  • Introduction to Research Data and Document Management
  • Introduction to Writing the Literature Review
  • Managing the Supervisory Process
  • Planning and Writing Your Thesis
  • Preparing for Your Doctoral Viva Voce Examination
  • Preparing for Your Major Review
  • Principles of Successful Poster Design
  • Project Management for Research
  • Using MS Excel for Data Analysis
  • Writing a Funding Application

Graduate Students Professional Development (GPROF)

The Graduate Students Professional Development (GProf) course provides a six-part introduction to teaching and learning in Higher Education (HE), and is mandatory for postgraduate students involved in any teaching activity in the University. Experienced and qualified teachers from other sectors should also undertake GProf for an introduction to processes and practices at Portsmouth. Postgraduate students who are not teaching, but are interested in learning more about teaching and learning in HE are also welcome to attend.

Postgraduate students are permitted to teach after they have attended the initial GProf Orientation session, but must then complete the full course. 

For more information about GProf, including how to register, please visit the GProf Moodle page.

Partnership training with the University of East Anglia

This online training is delivered in partnership with the University of East Anglia, and offers research and professional skills training in a ‘live-taught’ online format.

Five different modules are available, covering:

  • Academic writing
  • Qualitative research skills
  • Quantitative research skills
  • Finishing your PhD
  • Teaching Skills

LinkedIn Learning

LinkedIn Learning is an online training resource which is free to all our postgraduate research degree students. You can access a library of more than 14,000 courses on business, software, and creative skills – some of which will be directly relevant to research degree students, while others provide general skills training such as Microsoft Office, SPSS, and Nvivo.

Skills Forge

Once you start your research degree with us, you'll be able to use your University account details to book onto and record any training and development you attend using Skills Forge.

You can also record supervisory meeting minutes and notes, external training and development events, and conferences you attend as part of your training and development.

Ready to find out more?

Graduate School Development Programme 2023/24

Download our accessible brochure and find out more about our Graduate School Development Programme for 2023/24
Download our programme

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