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Courses and workshops for research students

As a research student at Aston University, you are offered a wide range of workshops and courses for your personal, professional and career development. These courses and workshops are mainly developed, coordinated and delivered by the Graduate School and mapped to the Vitae Researcher Development Framework.

The following list is only some of those courses and workshops. Information on the course list and how to book a place on a course can be found here.

 PhD related courses

This course examines the nature of the PhD; what is a PhD and will examine ways of managing your PhD and keeping your research studies on track. 
This short course will assist research students who have submitted or are nearing submission of their qualifying report (QR) to prepare themselves for their first year viva examination. 
This one-day session explores the practicalities of thesis writing, including how to develop an appropriate writing style and how to make writing more productive. 
This one-day session explores the practicalities of thesis writing, including how to develop an appropriate writing style and how to make writing more productive. 
This short course will assist research students who have submitted or are nearing submission of their thesis to ready themselves for their viva voce examination. 
Research methods 
This one-day course will provide an introduction to best practice in designing these research instruments in order to avoid the pitfalls and get the best possible data from the study. 
This one-day workshop will provide an overview of the management and conduct of qualitative research interviews with both individual research subjects and groups of research subjects. 
This one-day workshop offers participants the opportunity to reflect on their qualitative research interviewing/facilitation skills and to practise these further. The workshop is only available to those who have already attended ‘Managing and conducting qualitative research interviews’. 
Research management & planning
This day-long course will enable participants to plan and manage projects with greater ease and effectiveness. 
This short course will be of interest to any member of staff who wishes to manage his/her time more proactively. 
Research students usually have two career plans – to be an academic or not to be an academic. What strategies are required to achieve either goal? This three hour workshop is designed to help in answering this question. 
Communication and publication skills
This is a two session course (two half day sessions, one week apart) which is highly participative and designed to build confidence and improve presentation skills.
This is an opportunity for those who are about to give a presentation or planning to do so in the near future to try their presentation out in front of two facilitators. 
During this one-day workshop the process of writing and publishing papers in peer reviewed journals is considered in detail. 
Team working & people management 
Working co-operatively and as part of a team enables individuals to give a valuable contribution to the success of the team and to gain support for their own professional objectives. 
This short course will help research students identify how to make their participation in meetings effective and to evaluate their own performance in meetings. 
Using popular motivational theory, delegates will understand what motivates people at work and the differences in individual motivation. 

IT courses and workshops

There are a variety of IT courses and workshops, which are very relevant to you. The following are only some of those.

In this 2 day long introduction to databases, participants will learn the value of Access as a database software tool. 
This 1 day course will provide existing users of Access with further techniques to design, produce and maintain high quality and complex databases. 
This one day course introduces spreadsheets through Microsoft Excel.
This one day intermediate Excel course gives participants an in-depth look at particular topics . 
This advanced, one day Excel course will focus on customising your workbook, working with multiple data sources, enhancing your workbooks using graphics and charts and collaborating with others using workbooks. 
This two day course is for individuals who wish to gain a good understanding of the basics of Microsoft Project.
This one day course is for individuals who wish to gain a basic overview of Microsoft Project.
This one-day course aims to provide the skills necessary for writing papers, reports and chapters of a thesis. 
This one-day workshop introduces NVivo 9 qualitative data analysis software and provides guided hands-on experience of using it. 
On this one-day course you will explore EndNote, software used to manage bibliographic citations.
Job application skills
This two hour session is delivered by the Careers and Employability Centre and focuses on the art of making applications. 
This practical half-day workshop, which is delivered by the Careers and Employability Centre, will try to allay fears and attempt to de-mystify the practice of interviewing.