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Courses for postdocs and research staff are designed to support your career and professional development.

Making fellowship and grant applications

Research Staff in MPLS gain eligibility to 10 days of training and development per annum

The MPLS Divisional Board has agreed that research staff in the division “are entitled to a minimum of ten days per annum for their professional development and training”.  Training and professional development is defined as “anything that enhances researchers’ skills and abilities to do their work”.  It is applicable to their current role or their future career.  Researchers should agree with their Principal Investigator when these days can be taken well in advance and they should be discussed in their annual Career of Personal Development Review.  Read the policy in full here.

MPLS Training and Development Brochure 2017-18Researcher Training and Development Brochure

Download a copy of the Researcher Training and Development Opportunities brochure for 2017-18.

If you need further information about any of the courses listed in the brochure or below, please contact us at

There are also many training opportunities available from other training providers in the University

To support their career development, all contract research staff and research fellows in the MPLS Division are entitled to a career development review during their first six months of employment, and then an annual development review thereafter.

To contact the divisional training team please email

 Courses and overview



Avoiding Plagiarism (online course)

This online course provides an introduction to the issues surrounding plagiarism.

Self-paced online course

Being Part of an Effective and Enterprising Team

Understanding people's team preferences, what motivates a team and some common pitfalls...

One half-day session

Building a Business

This course provides basic business skills to those who would like to start a business, and those with an existing business who wish to develop and enhance their skills.
Nine week evening lecture series.

Design Thinking: Rapid Prototyping

Learn about a creative, action learning process, developed in Standford, which will help you develop and test prototypes.

Three lunchtime sessions

Developing Your Ideas

Identify road blocks in the way of a project and assess possible impact. Part of the Entrepreneurship Programme.

One half day workshop.

Enterprise and Entrepreneurship

MPLS has a programme of courses and events which use Enterprise as a forum for developing research skills and Research as a way of highlighting all that enterprise might offer. 

Entrepreneurship (online courses)

These courses will help you understand entrepreneurship in the academic context, why and how entrepreneurial opportunities arise and how to evaluate ideas and raise resources.
Three self-paced online courses.

How to Peer Review Journal Papers

This course will explain how the peer review system works, and what is expected of reviewers, and how to review manuscripts quickly and effectively.
One 2.5 hour workshop.

The Idea Generator: Creativity and Evaluation for Research and Tech Transfer

Workshop providing tools for the generation of ideas, building on the rest of the entrepreneurship programme.

 One half day event.

An Introduction to TRIZ

TRIZ is a systematic toolkit for both engineers and Scientists. This course will be a fast paced introduction to the tools and process.

Two full day workshops

Leadership in Action

Leadership in Action is designed to help researchers understand more about leadership and to prepare them to lead.

Three full days

Navigator (For men)

Identify the clear and practical steps you want to take in your life, and develop the skills and determination to do something about them.
Four one day workshops over a period of three months.

Online Courses

The University has a number of free online courses designed to support you in your research.
Complete at your own pace.


For women researchers aiming for an academic career

Personal Pitching

Practice a series of pitches with peers, and learn tips and tricks on hooking your audience into the pitch.

One half-day workshop

Pictorial Planning: Lean Canvas for Researchers

This interactive course will use the popular business model canvas combined with your research project as a starting point to develop your ideas further.

One half-day workshop

Pitching for Funding

This interactive course will use your research as a starting point to guide you in how to pitch for investment in your venture.

One half-day workshop

Pitching Your Research for Impact

A series of lunchtime workshops thinking about how to achieve the highest impact with your research

Poster Design and Presentation

The opportunity to understand how to select one aspect of your research to interest and stimulate a given target audience and conference theme.
One 3.5 hour workshop.

Presentation Skills

The key principles of planning and delivering a successful talk and how to build confidence.

One 3 hour workshop

Promoting Your Ideas for Collaboration and Investment

Working with stakeholder groups and building relationships through collaboration.

One 3.5 hour workshop

Protecting Your IP

How to protect ideas and understand the process of patenting.

One half day workshop

Research Integrity (online courses)

Understand the key responsibilities you have as a researcher, identify the challenges you could face in meeting these responsibilities, and learn strategies for dealing with pressures and difficult situations.
Self-paced online courses relevant to specific research fields.


Scientific Writing: Core Skills


The course covers: writing in simple, clear and concise scientific English; writing style, refined writing, common grammatical errors and proof reading; preparation of the core sections of a scientific paper, abstract and title; and the language of scientific argument. Instruction is supported by critique of relevant papers and writing exercises.

One-day workshop


Scientific Writing: Getting Your Paper Published


This course will look at the aspects you need to consider when constructing your paper, and demystify peer reviewed journals by giving insider insights from science journal editors and showing you what they really want.

One-day workshop

Springboard (For women)

Identify the clear and practical steps you want to take in your life, and develop the skills and determination to do something about them.
Four one-day workshops over a period of three months.

Teaching and Learning: Overview

An overview of the training in teaching skills available in departments, the division and the University.

Teaching: Reviewing first steps and Developing the next

An opportunity to review first teaching experiences at Oxford, and plan next steps

One two hour workshop

Teaching and Learning: Developing Learning and Teaching (DLT)

Make your teaching more effective for your students and for yourself. Learn how to take a more scientific, evidence-based approach to your teaching and your students’ learning. 

3 x three hour workshops, each a fortnight apart.

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