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Development outline for PGRs


When you arrive

  • Have you read your Postgraduate Research handbook? 
  • Have you followed us on Twitter?
    • @UoMLibrary
    • @UoMLibResearch
    • @UoMOpenResearch
    • @mlemanchester
  • Check when our workshop for new PhD students is running and book a place.

First year

How you spend the first year of your PhD will vary depending on your discipline area and whether you’re a full-time or part-time research student but the following suggestions will help you get started.

  • Do you know how to find information?  If you need a refresher, check the 'searching' resources on our My Learning Essentials (MLE) pages (workshops and online)
  • How will you manage the information you find?  Our reference management workshops and MLE online 'referencing' resources will introduce you to some useful tools. 
  • Also consider practising your academic writing skills at sessions organised by your School or Faculty Researcher Development team, or our MLE workshops.
  • If you’re new to the UK, check our MLE calendar for our Understanding British Culture workshop. The International Society also provide lots of support and social opportunities.

Second year

At this stage you’ll be well underway with your research. You’ll probably still be investigating and gathering data but you may also be thinking about your first publication. See how we can help. If you can’t attend workshops on the days we run them, check if we’re also delivering a session on your Faculty’s Researcher Development programme.

  • At the end of your first year you will claim an ORCID.  Once you’ve done that sign up for one of our workshops on how to manage your ORCID.
  • Find out how to store, manage and share your research data at one of our workshops or via our online resources. We know that data varies between discipline areas so we offer faculty-specific workshops.
  • It can be hard to find time and a suitable quiet space to concentrate on your writing. Look out for ‘Shut Up and Write’ sessions – we’ll advertise events we’re hosting throughout the year via Twitter (@UoMLibResearch/@UoMOpenResearch) but your Faculty Researcher Development team may organise events too. 
  • Once you’re ready to write a journal article, get some tips from our online resource or by attending our publishing workshops. These are often delivered by publisher representatives and may focus on specific discipline areas (we’ll advertise any discipline focus on the session outlines).
  • How to write a paper is only one aspect of publishing to consider this year. When you’re choosing where to publish your articles you should also think about how you publish. Will your work be available to journal subscribers only or will you make it Open Access?  Attend one of our workshops to find out why you should and how you can.

Third year

As you near completion of your PhD you’ll be sharing more of your research. We can help here too.

  • If you didn’t make it to a publishing workshop last year, make sure you fit one in this year. These sessions advise on how to structure your paper and how to survive the publication process. Our online resource on writing a journal article will also be helpful. 
  • It’s good practice to share your research informally – are you blogging about your research and related activities? Check your Faculty Researcher Development programmes for training on blogging.
  • As you become more active in your field of expertise you may want to get involved in other aspects of publication, eg, such as undertaking peer review, editing a journal or even setting up a new journal. We have online resources to develop your skills in all these areas.
  • You’ll probably also be wondering what kind of impact your research is having in the wider world. We run a workshop on how to find out ‘Who’s talking about your research online’ – come along and find out how you can track this.
  • You’ll also be thinking about how to measure the academic impact of your research.  We have an online resource which will introduce you to citation analysis. 
  • Get tips to develop your online research profile at our '7 Steps' workshop.  
  • As you prepare to submit your thesis you’ll want to attend eThesis submission training. We deliver sessions as part of Faculty Researcher Development programmes – check your faculty’s calendar of events to book a place or look at the eThesis Support Service webpages for information, guidance and screenshots to help you prepare. 
  • You may be hoping to publish your thesis as a monograph. Our publishing programme includes a workshop providing advice from a publisher on how to do this.