Life as a medical researcher is both rewarding and challenging. It is challenging not just because researchers in this field pit themselves against some of the world’s deadliest diseases, but also due to the realities of research funding. Competition for grants is fierce and awards are usually for relatively short periods, with limited funds. As such, researchers have to make the most of the opportunities that come their way to hone their skills, grow their knowledge, expand their network and develop their CV in order to increase their chances of continued employment and to offer choices in what they can do next.
The Nuffield Department of Medicine is committed to supporting the long-term development of its researchers wherever possible. ‘Development’ in this sense is much wider than attending courses, conferences or seminars. The Learning and development opportunities for research staff website explains the wider definition of development. It also points out that much of your development will take place through undertaking challenging work and from interacting with colleagues and others within your field, with only a small part coming from formal study or courses.
We have created this section of the department website to set out some of the ways in which you can seek support for your development and to signpost you to additional sources of help.
The prime responsibility for your career development lies with you. Each researcher should make the most of Personal Development Reviews (PDR) and of the sources of support within the department and across the university. There are no set pathways for career progression. Some of you will stay in academia, some will leave. The Medical Research Council‘s interactive diagram of potential pathways outlines some recognised routes, but other routes are possible.
Explore the topics in this section of the website to:
- Understand roles and responsibilities for development
- How to plan your career development
- Personal development review (PDR)
- Sources of advice, guidance and support.