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Creativity and innovation

Research Skills required by PhD students D2: Be creative, innovative and original in one's approach...

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9 March 2010

Research Skills required by PhD students D2: Be creative, innovative and original in one's approach to research

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By the time students complete a PhD, they should be able to answer ‘Yes’ to most of these questions.

  • Do you suggest research activities and discuss alternatives in your supervisory meetings?
  • Do you actively seek alternative ways of looking at, thinking about, or investigating questions?
  • Can you develop new methods or combine methods in new ways when you need to?
  • Can you find solutions to difficult problems?
  • When you first plan a research activity, do you reflect on the limitations of the plan, and do you consider other ways of going about the activity?
  • Do you discuss your plans with other students and invite their suggestions and comments?
  • Do you discuss other students' plans?
  • Do you discuss research and research approaches with students outside your discipline?
  • Can you explain the latest technical developments in your field?
  • Can you anticipate likely developments?
  • Can you explain the role of 'surprise' in research?

Evidence of this skill

These are examples of documents you can collect. Each implies a piece or work, which may be a good way for you to develop this skill.

  • Your probation assessment.
  • A record of discussion or investigation of alternatives.
  • A record of your proposals for research activities (e.g., in supervisory meeting notes).
  • A research publication.
  • A patent application.

This page is based upon material produced by The Open University’s research school to support doctoral students.

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