Spotlight on the RDF: “Self-reflection”

In the second of our occasional series of spotlights, we take a closer look at a specific descriptor from the RDF.

In this series of “Spotlight on…” posts, we’ll be delving into the detail of the descriptors in Vitae‘s Researcher Development Framework (RDF).  Each one of the sixty-three descriptors is a characteristic of an excellent researcher, and we’ll be looking at how UoB PGRs can develop these characteristics.

reflection-1205794_1920If only self-reflection, in the context of becoming an effective researcher, were as easy as looking in the mirror!  In fact, the ability to reflect on your experiences, strengths and weaknesses, and to seek and respond to feedback is a hugely important quality you will develop as a researcher.  Effective self-reflection allows you to keep moving forward by careful evaluation of the past.

I’ve chosen to focus the spotlight on self-reflection at this time of year, because many of you will be completing your Development Needs Analysis (DNA) forms around now, and self-reflection is a key part of this process. Continue reading “Spotlight on the RDF: “Self-reflection””

New beginnings…

A warm welcome to new PGRs at the University of Birmingham.

So, the new academic year is about to start and this week we are welcoming new students at all levels across the University of Birmingham.  New postgraduate researchers are arriving, finding accommodation, meeting with their supervisors and wondering what they’ve let themselves in for.

welcome-sign-760358_640No-one is born as the perfect researcher, so new researchers have a lot of knowledge, skills, and behaviours to develop over the next few years (as, indeed, have all researchers as they move through their careers!).  This blog, and other support available across the University, will hopefully support that process.  Of course, this blog is also quite new, so we’ll be learning and developing together. Continue reading “New beginnings…”

Introducing the RDF

As well as being the basis for categorising all the posts on this blog, the RDF is an important keystone for your development.

Each post on this blog is categorised by the domains and sub-domains of the RDF, and tagged according to the descriptors (and other useful keywords).  So it’s probably about time I introduced the RDF to put this more in context.

Put simply, the Researcher Development Framework, or RDF, is a professional development framework for researchers.  It captures the knowledge, skills, behaviours, and attributes of successful researchers and allows researchers at all stages of their career to map their current level of performance against a professional standard with a view to ensuring they can reach their full potential as researchers.  Continue reading “Introducing the RDF”