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Presenting is a crucial skill for researchers, yet it is often something that even experienced scholars struggle with. This interactive workshop is designed for people who already have some experience of presenting and the basic principles involved, but would like to develop their skills in this area to a higher level.

This workshop provides the opportunity for practical experience of presenting within a supportive environment. During the workshop, you will be given time to design and deliver a short (5-10 minutes) presentation to a small audience comprised of your fellow researchers.


This course is designed for students with some presentation experience. It is possible to attend this course as an individual workshop, although we would recommend that you try to attend the series starting with the Basic Presentation Skills course.

3 other events...

Date Availability
Thu 12 Mar 2020 10:00 [Full]
Thu 4 Jun 2020 10:00 [Full]
Tue 23 Jun 2020 10:00 [Full]

Learn how to create and deliver an effective presentation.

Most postgraduate researchers benefit from giving presentations about their research by gaining feedback, sharing their ideas and/or findings, and raising their profile in the research community. Therefore, learning how to present your research effectively is an important skill to develop during the course of your doctorate.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Mon 27 Apr 2020 14:00 [Places]

As a researcher, you are expected not only to run experiments, but also write regularly. Establishing a writing regular routine can be difficult, especially when experiments are running well. This half day workshop will explore the different writing techniques, tips and tricks, productive writers use regularly to keep on track with their writing commitments.

7 other events...

Date Availability
Wed 26 Feb 2020 10:00 [Places]
Fri 28 Feb 2020 14:00 [Places]
Wed 11 Mar 2020 10:00 [Places]
Wed 25 Mar 2020 10:00 [Places]
Wed 6 May 2020 10:00 [Places]
Wed 27 May 2020 10:00 [Places]
Wed 24 Jun 2020 10:00 [Places]

Across all AHSS disciplines (and within) there are varying views of what research is. Following the work of Thomas Kuhn, these views form what are commonly referred to as ‘research paradigms’, entailing a variety of epistemological (study of knowledge) and ontological (study of being) assumptions that ultimately underpin and guide how we carry out research (method).

Though not a definitive means by which to conceptualize meta-research, this course offers the ‘research paradigm’ as a heuristic and expedient entry point into key terms and concepts often encountered by research students and the tactic assumptions underpinning them. This can and often does result in an ability to understand the significance of one’s own research, the research of others and the broader intellectual context in which both are situated.

Giving presentations is an essential skill for a researcher, be it in your deparment, at a major conference, or in your next job interview! You know your subject but sometimes issues of performance and clarity stop you being your best. Perhaps you can't project your voice, perhaps you are terrified of the Q&A, perhaps you feel your slides let you down, or perhaps you just don't know what to do to get better.

This is a highly interactive workshop that requires you to throw yourself into the activities. Everyone will be involved as we apply some of the material from the online Presentation and Performance toolkit and try it out in a safe and supportive environment.

The workshop is especially designed for those who feel less confident with the performance aspects of giving presentations. If you are comfortable standing up and talking in front of others then we recommend starting with the online materials.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Tue 11 Feb 2020 10:00 [Full]
Developing Your Leadership as a PhD Student Thu 16 Jan 2020   10:00   [More dates...] [Places]

Leadership is a word that seems to be ubiquitous in universities these days, but keeping a handle on all its possible meanings is becoming ever harder: research leadership, team leadership, institutional leadership, thought leadership, educational leadership, ethical leadership, inclusive leadership…

Likewise, employers beyond academia repeatedly tell us that they’re seeking researchers who can be self-motivating, proactive, strategic; can build productive relationships with colleagues at all levels of seniority; are able to create consensus and shared understanding; know how to mentor and guide as well as take direction…

So, if leadership is being talked about everywhere and yet is also very hard to define, how can you as a PhD student identify your own leadership practice and your future potential?

This interactive workshop will combine practical insights with key leadership theories in order to explore the ways in which you’re already acting as a leader; to examine how ‘follower’ behaviours have a crucial role in shaping good leadership; and to consider leadership in a variety of contexts.

The session will be led by Jen Wade, a highly experienced trainer who has been leading her own business for more than ten years, working with a diverse range of organisations across the academic, public, and commercial sectors.


Outcomes:

  • Review a range of definitions of, and styles of, leadership.
  • Recognise your current strengths and future potential as a leader.

2 other events...

Date Availability
Tue 18 Feb 2020 10:00 [Places]
Fri 1 May 2020 10:00 [Places]
Effective Researcher (Sciences & Technology) Wed 29 Jan 2020   10:00 [Places]

This course is designed for first-year PhD students to help you increase your effectiveness and meet the challenges of your PhD. We cover several different aspects of personal effectiveness in this one-day workshop, with practical solutions to get you started on your journey.


Outcomes:

  • Start planning the first year of your PhD
  • Be equipped to manage your relationship with your supervisor
  • Understand how to work effectively with others

To truly engage with literature at doctoral level it is crucial to develop a ‘critical’ approach that enables a strict and thus manageable selection of literature, and the development of interpretative themes by which to categorise and narrate the literature. Both aspects of critical reading and thinking often form the foundation of the thesis, given it both context and justification. Indeed, how a student approaches the literature is itself an integral part of establishing and evolving a unique contribution to knowledge.

This course seeks to help students develop their critical reading skills, and to deploy tactics and strategies that can accelerate the process of literature-based research without sacrificing detail and depth necessary for a doctoral thesis.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Tue 3 Mar 2020 10:00 [Full]

Getting published is a central part of being a researcher. Peer-reviewed publications allow researchers to communicate their research to the broader research community, and thus, make a contribution to the body of work within their field.

This workshop is divided into two interrelated components. The first concerns the question of ‘high impact’, whilst the second concerns the process of peer-review and manuscript preparation.

It is possible to attend this as an individual workshop, although we would recommend that you try to attend the series starting with Getting published I: Writing for publication


Please note: This course does not offer bespoke or 1-1 support for manuscript preparation.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Thu 6 Feb 2020 10:00 [Full]

This is the first of two workshops designed to develop your understanding of the technicalities and the process of getting your research published.

In this workshop, we examine the technical aspects of writing up your research in a format appropriate for publication. You will learn about the importance of following journal guidelines and house style, and the value of using a clear structure to frame your paper. You will also receive guidance on how to produce clear writing in a register appropriate for the readership.

It is possible to attend this course as an individual workshop, although we would encourage you to attend the second workshop in the series Getting published II: Impact and Peer-review.


Please note: The course does not offer bespoke or 1-1 support for manuscript preparation.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Tue 21 Jan 2020 14:00 [Full]

Higher Education in the UK and elsewhere is increasingly reliant on research funding through grants and fellowships. Postdoctoral grants and fellowships also prove key to pursuing an academic career. And yet, the multitude and variety of funders and types of funding, and the disparate information relating to funding, has made the process of applying a daunting and complex one. Where do you being? What are you eligible for? How do you manage your efforts? How do you even write a research proposal appropriate to the funder’s needs? All these questions and more are covered in this course.

Whilst not offering specific or bespoke information, the course will nevertheless provide participants with a general overview of the types of funding and funders out there, and the process of applying and writing a research proposal.


Wanting to learn more about the peer-review system and gain a core skill every researcher should possess? This course is designed specifically for Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (AHSS) postdocs and researchers at an early stage of their career with little or no experience of reviewing manuscripts for journals. Focus is on subjects covered by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Economic and Social Research Council.

You will learn how to review research manuscripts quickly and effectively, what editors expect in a review, what to include in written comments to editors and authors and how long you should spend reviewing a manuscript. Following this course, which explores the results from a survey of 60 editors of AHSS journals, you will know the practical methods for reviewing a manuscript swiftly and successfully.

Outcomes:
- Gain a core skill that every AHSS researcher should have
- Understand how the peer-review system works
- Develop a better understanding of how to write your own manuscripts


Wanting to learn more about the peer-review system and gain a core skill every researcher should possess? This course is designed specifically for STEMM postdocs and researchers at an early stage of their career and with little or no experience of reviewing manuscripts for journals.

You will learn how to review research manuscripts quickly and effectively, what editors expect in a review, what to include in written comments to editors and authors and how long you should spend reviewing a manuscript. Following this course, you will know the practical methods for reviewing a manuscript swiftly and successfully.

Outcomes:
- Gain a score skill that every STEMM researcher should know
- Understand how the peer-review system works
- Develop a better understanding of how to write your own manuscript

Intercultural Communication new Fri 7 Feb 2020   10:00   [More dates...] [Places]

Research in the 21st century is global, and research teams are intercultural. 35% of Cambridge research students are from outside the EU; and postdocs are the most diverse group by nationality, representing almost 100 countries. This diversity is one of the University’s biggest strengths. Yet intercultural communication is not without its pitfalls and misunderstandings. It takes conscious discipline to think about one’s own cultural assumptions and to try to make sense of others'.

This half-day workshop will give you some tools to help identify where culture might be having an influence on your relationships, where common misunderstandings can occur, and how to address potential challenges.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Fri 22 May 2020 10:00 [Places]


A thorough awareness of issues relating to research ethics and research integrity are essential to producing excellent research. This session will provide an introduction to the ethical responsibilities of researchers at the University and explore issues of good research practice, research integrity and research misconduct. It will be interactive, using case studies to better understand key ethical issues and challenges in all areas.

The course will:

  • explore the issue of research misconduct in academia and facilitate discussion of why and how it occurs
  • explain the University and national expectations around research integrity and examine how this effects researchers
  • discuss some of the challenges to the integrity of research and ask what individuals, groups and institutions can do to tackle them
  • introduce the University’s research ethics system


The course will be delivered by the Research Governance Team in the Research Strategy Office.

4 other events...

Date Availability
Wed 12 Feb 2020 10:00 [Places]
Tue 3 Mar 2020 14:00 [Places]
Tue 28 Apr 2020 14:00 [Places]
Wed 3 Jun 2020 10:00 [Places]

More than ever, becoming a professional researcher – whether, for you, that means staying on in academia or bringing your research skills to another job sector – requires attributes like self-direction, persistence, and pro-activity; the willingness to think creatively and the capability to think ethically; an understanding of your own needs and wants, and empathy towards others. In other words, becoming a professional researcher requires you to demonstrate self-leadership.

This bite-sized workshop will introduce you to the concept of self-leadership and how it can be applied to PhD research. You may find it a useful workshop to do alongside Developing Your Leadership as a PhD Student.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Thu 18 Jun 2020 10:00 [Places]
Managing a Research Project: Online new Self-taught Booking not required

Managing a project is a key skill for an effective researcher, yet project management is often poorly understood.

This can lead to projects running out of time or money, or overworking people. This online course gives you the foundational project management knowledge needed to complete your research project successfully, as well as the opportunity to implement and thereby embed this knowledge.


Outcomes:

  • Understand how to define, plan and implement a project
  • Know how to manage yourself and others effectively
  • Be able to identify and plan for risks and cope with challenges


How to Access the Course

In order to enrol onto Managing a Research Project, you will need an enrolment key. Please use the appropriate key for your School.

Graduate School of Life Sciences: GSLS-mrp19
Physical Sciences and Technology: SPST-mrp19
Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences: AHSS-mrp19

You can access the course and enrol at the following link: https://www.vle.cam.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=135202

Map your Postdoc Journey NOW! new Thu 6 Feb 2020   09:30   [More dates...] [Places]

How can you make the most of your postdoc years at Cambridge? What does a strategic postdoc look like? What could you be doing now to be more strategic, intentional and agentive during your time at Cambridge?
This workshop explores how to navigate the research landscape, how to think and act strategically, and how to develop mental and emotional discipline for coping with the demands of the competitive research environment. We will explore the career journeys of former postdocs and see that there’s no one recipe for success, but there are common ingredients. This workshop is for postdoctoral researchers who want to get to and be prepared for the next step in their careers, whether that’s within academia or beyond.


Outcomes:

  • Begin to take charge of your own career path
  • Understand the many actions you could be taking now to achieve a career within or beyond academia
  • Consider the important link between mental and emotional health and career advancement


Feedback:

“It encouraged an overall view of thinking about my career and what I want out of it and what I am good at. It also covered examples of people who stayed in academia as well as those who did not, so that I was able to consider the pros and cons of more than just one route.”

“I'm right at the start of my post-doc and it helped me to think about what I wanted to get out of the next few years in terms of my career.”

1 other event...

Date Availability
Thu 21 May 2020 09:30 [Places]

Ever wonder why you seem to ‘click’ with one person and not another? Ever wonder why you might find some things easier to do than others? The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) might shed some light on these questions.

Why this course might make a difference

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator presents a framework to help you understand yourself and others, by exploring differences and preferences in four areas of your personality. As a result of this exploration you may work more effectively and be more understanding in your relationships with others.

Led by a qualified MBTI practitioner, the workshop comprises working through the MBTI questionnaire and self-assessment exercises, so that participants can:

  • Understand the concept and theories behind the MBTI types and process to obtain a personal profile
  • Explore the differences and preferences within personalities in research-related scenarios

Course feedback:

“I had known about the Myers-Briggs, but I hadn't understood the different dimensions fully, or their interactions at a deeper level. Between explanations and activities, the course really helped me to understand the Myers-Briggs perspective, and to be aware of personal and professional differences between my friends and colleagues.”

“The contents of this training and the design of the teaching were very attractive and interesting. I think this training is very useful and helpful, and will recommend it to my friends and other students in my department in the future.”

1 other event...

Date Availability
Thu 5 Mar 2020 10:00 [Places]
Postdocs: An Initial Guide to Leadership new Wed 22 Jan 2020   14:00   [More dates...] [Places]

Are you in a formal leadership role, or have you taken on leadership positions informally?

This workshop will help you to consider the variety of situations and contexts you find yourself leading in and guide you in understanding your leadership skills and abilities so that you can improve them and deploy them thoughtfully. We will look at a variety of meanings and views of leadership, discover the 4 elements of leadership, consider various leadership styles, and reflect on leadership within and out of research environment.

We would encourage you to take this workshop as a brief introduction to leadership before attending more in-depth workshops, including Postdocs: Self-Leadership and Postdocs: Leading Others.


Outcomes

  • Recognise own current skills and strengths in relation to developing further as a leader.
  • Review a range of definitions of, and styles of, leadership.
  • Apply to your own context.


Feedback:

“I found it interesting to define what leadership means and to understand the different styles there are.”

“It was a very interesting and different training which was very good to attend so as to know the skills to develop.”

1 other event...

Date Availability
Thu 2 Apr 2020 10:00 [Places]

As a postdoc, you’re in a transitional period of your career, one that can be precarious at times or marked by dependency on others. Inevitably, there are moments when you have to engage in difficult conversations, whether with your PI, your peers, students and/or the people you support or oversee.

Are you able to ask for the things you need and want? Do you spread yourself too thin by saying yes to others’ requests for support? Do you have techniques for approaching difficult conversations? This course is designed to help you develop an assertive mindset and to communicate your needs in an honest, clear, and respectful way.


Outcomes:

  • Understand the benefits of being assertive and the difference between assertive, aggressive, and passive thinking and behaviour
  • Know what assertiveness looks and sounds like
  • Consider different ways to deal with difficult conversations in light of your own behaviour and that of others.

1 other event...

Date Availability
Fri 20 Mar 2020 09:30 [Places]
Postdocs: Being Assertive and Making Yourself Heard new Thu 4 Jun 2020   10:00 [Places]

Are you able to ask for the things you need and want? The career of a postdoc researcher is demanding, and it involves forging careful relationships with a variety of figures, from PIs to fellow researchers and peers to postgraduate students. Are you capable of asking for help from others? Do you spread yourself too thin by saying yes to others’ requests for support? This course is designed to help you develop an assertive mind-set and to communicate your needs in an honest, clear, and respectful way.


Outcomes:

  • Understand the benefits of being assertive and the difference between assertive, aggressive, and passive thinking and behaviour
  • Know what assertiveness looks and sounds like
  • Develop skills in communicating assertively in day-to-day conversation


Feedback:

“It was one of the best training sessions I have attended while at the University. Went back to the lab and recommended it to my colleagues.”

“[This course] highlighted a new way of thinking/mindset that I was not very aware of. It gave me confidence that I can be more assertive.”

Do you get the results you want from your communication with others at work? Are you able to talk with confidence in meetings and interviews? Do you have a high level of impact when speaking in public?

This individually focused and completely confidential one-to-one coaching session will help you refine your presentation skills, help you speak more confidently as an emerging leader in your research field, and develop new approaches to your communication in a wide range of professional situations. Constructive feedback will give you insight into your speaking style, how you come across to others, and how well your ideas are communicated. Coaching will focus on your individual requirements ranging from practical points about elocution and vocal projection, to holding the attention of a room, to structuring a compelling presentation.

41 other events...

Date Availability
Mon 20 Jan 2020 10:30 [Full]
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Tue 3 Mar 2020 09:30 [Full]
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Postdocs: How to Achieve Productive Collaborations new Tue 23 Jun 2020   10:00 [Places]

We hear a lot lately on the benefits of collaboration for researchers. International collaborations look good on your CV, being collaborative helps generate higher impact publications, and participating in collaborations leads to creating professional networks you can call on throughout your career.

If we know that collaborations are good for research and career progression, it follows that we should learn how to collaborate well. This workshop looks at the practices of productive collaborations exploring the ways of thinking and doing that will contribute to successful teamwork. We will consider the importance of give-and-take within professional relationships, the benefits and challenges of bringing people together, and the stages collaboration goes through. We will also explore how working with others leads to personal growth.


Outcomes:

  • Learn the skills and ways of thinking that lead to productive collaborations.
  • Understand the challenges of teamwork and the typical stages of collaboration.
  • Consider the links between working collaboratively and personal growth.
Postdocs: How to Approach Difficult Conversations new Tue 5 May 2020   10:00 [Places]

As a postdoc, you’re in a transitional period of your career, one that can be precarious and uncertain at times or marked by dependency on others. Inevitably, there are moments when you have to engage in difficult conversations, whether with your PI, your peers, or with the people you now oversee. You may need to discuss the advancement of your career, settle a conflict with a colleague, or provide feedback to the students.

This workshop is designed to equip you with the right tools to prepare for and have difficult conversations. We will consider the factors that make particular conversations difficult as well as the “third-generation thinking” and mindful listening that will help you elicit the response you want. This interactive workshop is for all postdocs who want to hone their communication skills, advance their careers, and develop their leadership capacities.


Outcomes:

  • To think differently in leading difficult conversations to negotiate and influence.
  • Articulate own view point in collaboration with team members.
  • Consider different ways to deal with difficult conversations in light of your own behaviour and that of others.


Feedback:

“I liked the way we explicitly broke down the process of preparing for difficult conversations by giving techniques.”

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