- Supervisors & managers
- Premia - making research education accessible
- Supervising disabled researchers - Premia
- Accessing academic networks
Accessing academic networks
At the end of a doctoral degree the doctoral candidate should be recognised as a full professional in their field. One of the facets towards this is academic and/or professional networking. Informal and formal networking is the life-blood of academia. Advice given to postgraduate researchers in handbooks and the literature is to establish their own informal networks while participating in formal ones like professional associations and conferences. Such networking can counteract isolation, stimulate and motivate by placing individual research in a wider context, create opportunities for attending conferences and giving papers and develop skills which will enhance employability.
In How to get a PhD (1994) Phillips and Pugh describe the additional facets of research study:
‘As PhD students get closer to the goal of gaining the research degree, so too do they need to get closer to recognition as a full professional. But becoming a full professional means more than having completed a research project to a satisfactory standard: it means being able to contribute fully to academic life. It is part of the supervisor's job to help students prepare for this...
This entails encouraging your students to give seminars on their research and related topics and to attend seminars that others are giving. It means helping them to gain the confidence to question and comment on what has been presented by the speaker. Postgraduates should also gain experience of attending conferences, speaking from the floor (as they have learned to do in seminars) and giving papers of their own...You could give them a helping hand, too, by introducing them to your own network of contact and encouraging them to get in touch with colleagues who are working in their area of interest.’Phillips and Pugh, (1994)