Planning your professional development

Identifying your professional and career development needs can be a challenging prospect.  Identifying your CPD needs can happen as a planned process or instincitvely as a response to currents gaps in skills or knowledge.

Proactive planning is often the more calm and manageable approach.
There are a variety of tools and processes that you can utilise to help make the process easier:

  • Mentoring discussion
  • Career management discussion
  • Informal conversation with your line manager or peers
  • Supervisory meeting
  • SRDS mid point and annual review - use the tailored SRDS form for researchers [LINK] and the supporting  guide to get the most out of your SRDS (ECR SRDS booklet)
  • The Researcher Development Framework (RDF)

The Researcher Development Framework

The RDF "captures the knowledge, behaviours and attributes that the higher education sector, overall, has identified as significant for researchers. Therefore the core of the Framework has been determined and defined by the research profession and validated by stakeholders, such as employers and funders.” (Vitae 2015).

Using the Researcher Development Framework will help you to consider what skills and experiences will enhance your career prospects and how to articulate your capabilities to future employers.

Have a go using the University's online tool, developed by a group of The University of Sheffield MSc students.

Image of the Researcher Development Framework online tool