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Research Skills required by PhD students

Research Skills required by PhD students, as defined by the UK Research Councils

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2 March 2010

Bringing together PhD skills expected of students in the UK, as outlined in the Joint Statement of the Research Councils and AHRB

A: Research Skills and Techniques  

  1. Recognising research problems
  2. Critical thinking
  3. Knowing current work in field
  4. Research methods
  5. Critical reviewing
  6. Documenting and reporting

B: Research Environment  

  1. Understanding the research context
  2. Complying with ethical requirements
  3. Following good research practice
  4. Complying with heath and safety legislation
  5. Understanding research funding and evaluation
  6. Justifying research methods
  7. Understanding academic and commercial exploitation

C: Research Management  

  1. Organising your work
  2. Information management
  3. Using information sources
  4. Using IT

D: Personal Effectiveness  

  1. Ability to learn
  2. Creativity and innovation
  3. Flexibility and open-mindedness
  4. Self-awareness
  5. Self-discipline
  6. Asking for help
  7. Independent working

E: Communication Skills  

  1. Academic writing
  2. Presenting to non-academics
  3. Academic presentations
  4. Promotion of public understanding
  5. Teaching, mentoring, demonstrating

F: Networking and Teamworking Skills  

  1. Building relationships and networks
  2. Working in a team
  3. Giving and receiving feedback

G: Career Management

  1. Continued professional development
  2. Planning your career progression
  3. Identifying transferable skills
  4. Presenting yourself to employers

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