Researcher Development Programme (RDP)

The Researcher Development Programme (RDP) is here to support you throughout your doctorate, from getting started with research, enhancing your personal effectiveness, through to engaging others and successfully communicating your work. Each workshop is mapped to the relevant Researcher Development Framework skills domain, and is stand-alone, so that you can pick and chose the most relevant events according to your training needs. The Training Needs Analysis function on eDoc can help you to assess your current skills and plan your development (if you're not sure how to use this, sign up for one of our eDoc workshops below). 

Please click on the links for more details of each workshop and to book a place. You can also use eDoc to view forthcoming events in a calendar format.

If you have any queries at all about any events or resources, please contact Victoria Sheppard, or Jo McKeon, in the Doctoral Academy. If you can't access any of the booking links but would like to attend, please just get in touch.

Faq Items

A: Knowledge and Intellectual abilities

Knowledge base, cognitive abilities, and creativity - tools to conduct research.

Sessions available on the Researcher Development Programme include:

  • Getting to grips with method and methodology
  • Effective interview skills for research
  • Focus groups
  • Transcribing for doctoral researchers
  • Online research methods: the world at our fingertips?
  • Creative research methods (2 part course)
  • Strategic searching and Sage Research Methods Online
  • Using Scopus effectively: getting the most out of your search
  • EndNote
  • Systematic Literature Reviews - an introduction

For details of forthcoming sessions, please refer to the eDoc calendar

  • Maths, statistics and data analysis: the Academic Achievement team offer workshops and drop-ins for any queries with maths and stats issues including the use of software, such as SPSS, NVivo, R, Python, Matlab, or Excel for qualitative or quantitative analysis. You can access their training calendar here

Online resources related to knowledge base, cognitive abilities and creativity

Help with recruiting participants

As an LJMU PGR, you can advertise your study on Digital OU's Call for Participants service, to recruit for surveys, interviews or any other research studies:

1. Join the Doctoral Academy CFP group here
2. Create a Study Page (an advert for your research study)
3. Your Study Page is then visible to thousands of potential participants around the world who can self-select to take part in your research if they meet your requirements
4. You can also turn your Study Page into a recruitment poster, or link to it through emails and social media.

B: Personal Effectiveness

Personal qualities, self-management, professional and career development.

Sessions available on the Researcher Development Programme include:

  • Getting started with your doctorate (eDoc, planning your development, and making the most of your supervisor)
  • Planning your PhD: putting project management into practice
  • Seven Secrets of highly successful research students
  • Attending to you: the C word (Confidence)
  • Attending to you: thinking about thinking 
  • Wednesday writing afternoons (weekly)
  • Community writing day (monthly)
  • Crafting a CV with impact
  • Telephone and video job interviews: all you need to know to prepare yourself
  • How to transition out of academia well
  • Creative writing for wellbeing
  • Optimising resilience

For details of forthcoming sessions, please refer to the eDoc calendar

  • PhD Support Group - meets the first and third Tuesday of every month, 17:30-18:30, email for details
  • Vitae resources on personal effectiveness online - register using your LJMU email address. 

C: Research Governance and Organisation

Professional conduct, research management, finance, funding and resources.

All PGRs need to complete the LJMU Research Ethics and Governance training, accessed through Canvas here

Sessions available on the Researcher Development Programme include:

  • Doctoral Academy welcome and orientation event for new PGRs
  • Faculty induction
  • eDoc for PGRs
  • Data management for PGRs
  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) for PGRs
  • Using the Alternative Guide to Postgraduate Funding
  • Approaches to decolonising research
  • The Confirmation of Registration process
  • Final year focus
  • Preparing for submission and assessment
  • Seven reasons you'll pass your viva 
  • The Good Viva (film, available through RDP Canvas site)

For details of forthcoming sessions, please refer to the eDoc calendar.

Online Resources

D: Engagement, Influence and Impact

Working with others, communication and dissemination, engagement and impact

Sessions available on the Researcher Development Programme include:

  • Evaluating and synthesising your literature
  • Academic writing for your PhD
  • Creative and productive thesis writing
  • Starting as you mean to go on! Publication strategies during your PhD and beyond
  • The Conversation: the why and how of writing for the public
  • Wednesday writing afternoons (weekly)
  • Community writing days (monthly)
  • Thesis Boot Camp (residential workshop)
  • Enhancing public speaking using improvisation techniques
  • Presenting yourself on screen
  • Posters and infographics
  • Bringing your research to life: planning for impact
  • Social media for researchers
  • Research Cafes
  • ORCiD for Research
  • Open Access publishing
  • Metrics and you: what they mean and how you can use them

For details of forthcoming sessions, please refer to the eDoc calendar.

Other engagement resources and opportunities

You can also access various resources asynchronously through the Researcher Development Canvas site. There are workshop materials, recordings and tutorials on here covering over 40 different topics from information management, personal effectiveness, and research governance, through to presenting, writing and publishing. 

The Library and the academic skills teams are offering a number of webinars and virtual drop-ins on a range of topics including referencing, EndNote and statistics. You can see what sessions are coming up on their calendar.

You can also arrange for virtual one-to-ones for any support with library skills, academic writing, maths and stats (including survey design and survey validation). Or contact your liaison librarian who will be happy to help with any specific queries around databases, systematic reviews etc.