Welcome to the Careers management Course

logo for a sound file Audio Introduction

These materials supplement the online Careers Development Portfolio and present a self-paced, self-help way to help researchers develop the skills to plan and manage their own careers.

This course has been designed to give you a clearer understanding both of yourselves and your options following the completion of your studies. We hope that you will find the module informative whilst being also being fun and interactive.

Each course chapter is structured into a number of areas that will include:

  • Suggested Reading
  • Upcoming Events
  • Your career Plan

Our official Course Introduction focusses on the overall importance of Career Management skills, for which we introduce two specific approaches together with supplementary resources.

At this stage of the course we recommend you review your own stage in Career planning. What style of Career management is most appropriate to you?
This is also a good time to set yourself specific objectives for your own study.

Suggested Reading
  1. View the 'Introduction to the Career Management process' and the accompanying video,  that introduces two contrasting approaches to career preparation.
  2. Further Career Management Resources - general resources and more career focussed career planning resources.
    You will need to be selective here and ascertain the most relevant to your career/subject.
  3. Career Resources for International students
  4. Video introduction to the Online Career Development Portfolio and accompanying notes - which should explain the formal course requirements, the range of flexibility offered within the module and suggest how you might use this course most effectively.
  5. Where do PhDs go? If you are just starting to plan your career, we suggest you look at statistics of the occupations of successful candidates from your research area below, and the associated RCUK factsheets.

    See also  'Your career Plan' below.

Doctoral destinations for previous candidates from your Research area

(Vitae, 2013)

This data is taken from Doctoral candidates who graduated in 2006-7 taken from the DHLE longitudinal survey (3 ½ years on), analysed by Vitae, (What do researchers do? Early career progression of doctoral graduates (Vitae 2013).)

 Discipline Area

 HE Employment occupations:*

Other HE covers Professional Services roles and other HE occupations outside Teaching and lecturing and research

Major Employment sectors data chart

Arts and humanities^

Includes history; English; modern languages; classical and ancient languages and Archeology.

RCUK Factsheet 

data  HE occupations Arts data Major employment areas

Biological sciences^

Includes biology; biochemistry, molecular biology and biophysics and microbiology

RCUK Factsheet

data  HE occupations Bio Sciences data Major employment areas

Biomedical sciences^

Includes clinical and pre-clinical medicine; psychology; pharmacology, toxicology and pharmacy; anatomy, physiology and pathology; and nursing.

RCUK Factsheet

data  HE occupations data Major employment areas

Physical sciences and engineering^

Includes for chemistry; physics; computer science; mathematics; physical and terrestrial geographical and environmental sciences; geology; electrical and electronic engineering; mechanical engineering; and civil engineering.

RCUK factsheet

data  HE occupations data Major employment areas

Social sciences^

Include business and management; sociology; politics; human and social geography; law; economics; and academic studies in education.

RCUK Factsheet

data_chart data Major employment areas

See also the factsheets summarising the long-term statistics for each area provided by the RCUK
Note: you will need to assess this data against expected changes in Higher Education (HE) in your own area.

'Students should recognise their responsibility for developing personal career goals during their doctoral training and consider their possible career options, recognising that these may be outside academe. They should ensure that they are aware of the range of advice available and reflect on their training and development needs to assist in their future employability.'

RCUK Statement of Expectations for Doctoral Training
Events padlet Relevant Events (LDC Development Programme Timetable).

The events organised on campus within this University relevant to this section, which include:

  • PGRs: Career Management - organised by PGR Development using external presenters.
  • Future–proof your career (offered occasionally by PGR development)

See our Timetable page for further details, upcoming dates and event booking.

Further Statistics

Just under one third of UK final-year doctoral researchers had used their institutional careers service as postgraduates; a substantially smaller proportion than did so as undergraduates,

Of those respondents … three quarters had found it very helpful (25%) or helpful (51%), irrespective of their current discipline, career intention or study mode.

Vitae:  What do researchers want to do? The career intentions of doctoral researchers (2012)

Note: these materials in this course will provide much of the information  that you might look for from a careers service , but you may consider visiting the Careers and Employability service for specific events or for a  one-to one consultation.

Career Planning IconYour career Plan: Set aims and objectives for your use of this resources

  1. Use the resources in to review your own Career planning preferences. Are you someone who likes to have clear career goals or do you think the  ‘Planned happenstance’ form of career planning would suit you better?  How might you best prepare for these differing preferences?
  2. Set yourself specific aims and objectives for your participation in this course. To review the current state of your career planning, you might begin by completing  the SWOT recommended in our pre-course preparation,

    Suggestions for a SWOT on your own Career Preparation
  3. If you are still open to ideas of your career choice, use the above section, 'Doctoral destinations for previous candidates from your Research area' to set some career areas to explore in later chapters of this course.
  4. Career Plan: One of our aims of this course is to help you to develop a personal career plan.
    View the recommendations set out for a  Career Action  Plan.

    We have created a word file to help you create your own notes for this process:
    Download Career Plan (word file)

    Starting the career planning process will also  help you to assess what other information you want to find out during this course.