Researcher Roadmap

Researcher Roadmap

At the University of Aberdeen, we are passionate about your development and provide a training environment that will help you develop both the disciplinary excellence and knowledge around a specific area of research and a diverse, transferable skills base to ensure that you are competitive as a research leader across a range of career paths.

The Researcher Roadmap has been designed to help navigate your own PhD, to reflect on your progress and to check you are on track. It will also help you to personalise your development plan, to ensure you develop the skills, qualities and attributes to support your research degree and your future plans.


PhD Phases

It helps to think of your PGR journey in different phases, each of which will have different milestones and require different skills. Remember, there is no standard PhD and everyone's journey will be individual to them and will have different development needs at different times. The phases are designed to help you navigate your PhD and reflect on your progress by providing prompts for upcoming review and reporting milestones and for the types of skills and activities you may be thinking about. There are also suggestions for courses, workshops and activities that may be useful during each of the phases. Using the phases, your tailored programme will range from research ethics and integrity to project management, leadership, communication, public engagement, enterprise and research impact.

Phase 1                                                    Phase 2                                                       Phase 3
Review and Reporting PhD Milestones

Have a look at the timelines for Research Degree Programmes to help you plan your work. 

Reflect on your Skills and Progress

There is no standard research project and everyone will have development needs at different times. Use the questions in the sections below to help you reflect and to make a plan for the next phase of your project.

Getting Started: Essential information and tools to help you develop good habits and make the best start to each year of your research degree.

Ethics, Governance and Integrity: Knowledge of the standards, requirements and professionalism to ensure you undertake research safely and with integrity. 

Writing and Publishing: Skills for improving academic writing, managing references and developing an understanding of the editing and publication process.

Research Methods and Research-Related Skills: Guidance and practical tools to help support your research Including data collection, analysis and interpretation of findings.

Managing Information and Data: Where and how to find the information and literature related to your research and how to store and manage it appropriately. 

Digital Skills: How digital technologies can enhance your research activity, career progression and employability.

Productivity, Resilience and Wellbeing: Essential skills to help you successfully navigate your research degree, stay motivated and develop an effective work-life balance.

Networking, Presentation and Engagement: Skills and techniques to enhance your communication skills for a range of academic and alt-academic audiences to present your findings and develop your network.

Impact, Knowledge Exchange and Enterprise: The knowledge and skills required to recognise and create the potential societal and economic impact of your research.

Employability and Career Progression: So what are you going to do with that? Reflecting on the skills you have, making a plan to develop those you need and how to market them to different sectors for the next stage of your career.

Teaching and Demonstrating: Understanding, developing and reflecting on the tools required to support teaching and learning.

Leadership: Taking a leading role to ensure you get the most out of your working relationships during your doctorate and beyond.