Postgraduate research training and development

We are committed to the personal and professional development of our postgraduate researchers, and enabling them to complete their research on time, achieve academic outputs and achieve their employment aspirations.

Our commitment to researcher training and development

We offer a wide range of personal and professional opportunities to support you through your research degree and on into your future career. The aim of the development activity is to encourage researchers to develop their research performance, employability, professionalism and engagement with society. Our provision is guided by national initiatives such as the Researcher development Statement and Framework and the Researcher Concordat.

Support for researchers includes Academic Practice (part of the Organisational Development and Professional Learning service) including faculty facing research development staff, the library, IT and the Careers Centre.

Courses and workshops

As a researcher at Leeds you can benefit from an outstanding range of training opportunities, courses and workshops, supporting you through every step of your research degree from induction to the final Viva, through academic writing and presentation and wider employability skills including the opportunity to take part in our annual postgraduate research conference. Full details of the courses and workshops on offer from all our providers can be found here.

Training and development plan

Having an effective training plan will help you to complete your research degree on time and with minimum stress. It is worth taking time to plan, review and revisit your plan. Postgraduate ressearchers arrive with us with different levels of experience so our training and development activity is tailored to your needs. Please discuss your needs with your supervisor, agree a training plan and record it on GRAD within three months of starting your studies. Your supervisor will monitor your progress regularly, as a minimum as part of the first formal progress report, the progress report at transfer stage then annually.

National researcher development framework

The national researcher development framework (RDF) and associated Researcher Development Statement (RDS) (supported by the UK Research Councils) has been developed to help researchers consider their own personal and professional development.

The RDF identifies skills and attributes of researchers in four broad areas:

  • Knowledge and abilities
  • Personal effectiveness
  • Research governance and organisation
  • Engagement, influence and impact

Training and development: a step-by-step guide

  1. Analyse your training and development needs
    The University of Leeds training and development needs analysis is based on the national RDF. Use the training and development needs analysis tool in GRAD to help you consider your training needs within the context of your research degree and your future career. This helps you to track your progress.
  2. Identifying the opportunities that suit your needs
    There are many opportunities available to postgradute researchers including workshops, seminars, practice and feedback opportunities and learning from experienced colleagues.
  3. Planning your training and development
    Discuss your needs with your supervisor and agree a training plan. This plan should include the skills you want to develop, clear and achievable targets for completing training activities and where you will access the opportunities. A training plan is personal and based on your own self-analysis so it should be more than a commitment to attend a series of courses offered by your university. The plan should be recorded in GRAD.
  4. Recording and reflecting on your training and development
    Most of the workshops and events you take here will automatically appear in GRAD but you will need to record some training yourself, especially any training provided outside the University.