Professional development

Whatever your goals are, we can support you.

We offer award-winning specialist training, one-to-one careers advice and mentoring from academics and professionals.

Our innovative Think Ahead programme also brings together staff and doctoral researchers from various disciplines for professional development opportunities.

Your development

Your supervisor will work with you to identify your needs and create a personalised doctoral development programme. This might include taking taught modules alongside your research to help you achieve your goals. We’ll make sure you learn skills relevant to you and your career plans.


Whatever your discipline, you can take a break from your research to go on placement in the UK or overseas. This could be with a private company, a hospital, a museum, a government department or an NGO. We’ll help you look for potential employers.


If you have an idea for a business, a public engagement event or a non-profit enterprise we’ll offer support and advice. We have a dedicated enterprise team working full-time to help students develop their ideas.


If you want to develop your research skills, we can offer expert guidance. Topics include:

Research skills and methods
Mathematics and Statistics Help (MASH)

We also offer free English language classes to support your study. You can take up to two 90-minute classes each week.

Many of our PhD students teach undergraduates in their departments – we have a dedicated training scheme for this.

Public engagement

Sheffield is an innovator in the field of public engagement and there are many opportunities for you to get involved. You could even set up your own project.

Kroto PhD research

Develop your skills, share ideas

There are many opportunities at Sheffield to present and share your research through seminars and conferences.

In this video PhD students and academics discuss an innovative symposium that enabled PhD students to celebrate their research.

"I'm really grateful to have this opportunity to work together and organise this conference with people across the board. It’s great for our CVs. It was an exciting experience and we learnt a lot."
Pratik Desai, research associate and doctoral researcher

Case study: how our students work with businesses

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships give research students the chance to work with businesses on a specific problem. This video shows one of our PhD students working with JRI Orthopaedics Ltd to develop the next generation of hip replacements.