D3 - Developing research staff: using structured programmes to increase engagement and enhance outcomes

Day 2 at 13:45 - Developing research staff: using structured programmes to increase engagement and enhance outcomes


Day Day 2
Session D
Start time 13:45
Strand Research Staff
Code D3

Jos Finer - Head of Organisational and Staff Development, University of St Andrews

Michelle Paterson - Staff Developer (Research Staff), University of St Andrews


Workshop overview:

This workshop brings together two key themes in research staff development: how to engage research staff in their own professional development and how to extend their career planning horizon from the end of their current contract to encompass longer term career goals.

The workshop will demonstrate how these two themes can be addressed by moving away from a menu-based open programme and towards a more structured approach to professional development for Postdocs. 

The workshop presents a model for structured development programmes, the principles of which can be applied within any research staff development programme and which could bring benefits to the participants, to the researcher developer and to the institution.

Workshop topics covered:

  • Pros and cons of traditional approaches and open programmes
  • Advantages of structured programmes as an alternative
  • Principles for effective structured programmes
  • ‘Passport programmes' - a model for structured development programmes
  • ‘Passport to Research Futures' - a case study for research staff development
  • Themes for structured development programmes
  • Constructing a programme ‘what building material do you already have?’
  • External recognition ‘ what are the options?’

Themes covered:

  • New approaches to enabling researchers to reach their potential and make powerful career choices
  • Leadership development for researchers

Workshop outcomes:

By the end of the workshop participants will:

  • Appreciate the value of structured development programmes to the researcher developer, participant and institution
  • Be aware of some principles for effective structured programmes which can be applied to different development themes
  • Have a model for structured development programmes which could be replicated and developed by different institutions
  • Have considered how existing provision could be used to build a structured development programme
  • Be aware of options for gaining external recognition for structured development programmes


Workshop, including presentations and group activities/discussion