Support for Research Staff
The University has a dedicated set of webpages for researchers, including links to help with finding funding, career advice, personal and professional development, and connecting with other researchers.
NB: As a researcher employed by the University, you are eligible for 10 days of professional development (pro rata) per year.
Medical Sciences Division (MSD) Researchers’ Toolkit
The MSD Researchers’ Toolkit provides more specialised guidance for researchers in the medical sciences, including relevant funding opportunities and training courses offered through the MSD Skills Training team.
Numerous resources for researchers are available from funders, charities and professional societies. Below is a selection that might help support your professional development as a researcher:
- National researcher organisations: The largest organisation working to support the professional development of researchers across the UK is Vitae. The University of Oxford is a member of Vitae, providing all staff and students with full access to a wide range of resources.
- Funding councils and charities: Funding bodies such as the Medical Research Council (MRC) and Wellcome provide a range of resources, allowing researchers to explore their career options, identify development needs and find funding, as well as provide tips for running a research group.
- Professional societies: Professional (or learned) societies such as the Society for Neuroscience and British Neuroscience Association exist to represent and support researchers working within neuroscience. They provide career tools, training, networking events, committee membership opportunities, access to bursaries for conference attendance and recognition through the awarding of prizes.
Training and development
The University of Oxford’s People and Organisational Development Team have developed a series of courses designed specifically for researchers. In addition to those listed on the Training and Development Opportunities page, researchers can also access additional, specialised training opportunities through the following providers:
- Bodleian Libraries iSkills: Run workshops focused on information skills and resources, with more specialist courses for those in the Medical Sciences Division.
- Policy Engagement Team: Coordinates policy engagement training and opportunities to connect with policymakers for staff and students at Oxford.
- Enterprising Oxford: University initiative to help encourage, support and promote entrepreneurship to researchers through provision of information, events, training and profiles of startups, spinouts and SMEs within Oxfordshire.
- UK EQUATOR Centre: Organises education and training events focused on the responsible reporting of health research, including an annual publication school.
- NIHR Research Design Services South Central: Provides research design and methodological support to health and social care researchers to develop grant and fellowship applications.
- Reproducible Research Oxford (RROx): Offer a range of events and resources to support open scholarship and research reproducibility at Oxford.
Career planning advice is provided on the University webpages for Researchers. This includes links to the Careers Service, which has dedicated pages for research staff and students providing advice about careers within and beyond academia. You can also book a one-to-one appointment with one of the Careers Advisors for Research Staff.
Stay up-to-date with events from the Careers Service by signing up for their weekly newsletter via your account settings in CareerConnect.
Research Assistants and Technicians
Several additional, specialist resources exist for Research Assistants and Technicians:
- Careers Service: Offers specialist careers advice and support for these roles.
- Technicians Commitment: The University is a signatory of this sector-wide initiative led by the Science Council, which works to promote the visibility, recognition, career development and sustainability for technicians working in higher education and research. Find out more about Oxford’s involvement on the University’s HR Support webpages.
- Work Learn Develop: This scheme offers existing staff the opportunity to undertake a technician apprenticeship to gain a professional qualification, alongside their current role.
NDCN has supported several Research Assistants in the Department to undertake an MSc or DPhil alongside their job. You can read about the experiences of two Research Assistants in these two case studies: