Doctoral School

What do you do?

There are many staff in professional services across campus working to support doctoral researchers. In this item we highlight a staff member and service supporting the doctoral community & tell you a bit more about their role, and how they can help you.

Researcher Development Team, Doctoral School

(Research & Enterprise, Falmer House)

Helen Hampson - Researcher Development OfficerName: Helen Hampson
Role: Researcher Development Officer (manages the development and delivery of the Researcher Development Programme)
Laura Chapman - Researcher Development CoordinatorName: Laura Chapman
Role: Researcher Development Coordinator (Coordinates administration and logistics for Researcher Development Programme)
Name: Kirsty Bridger
Role: Researcher Development Coordinator (part-time support and coordination of Researcher Development Team activity). Kirsty also supports the Research Staff Office.

What do you do?

Our Researcher Development Programme provides year-round training and development opportunities to help doctoral researchers successfully complete their doctorate, and prepare for their future beyond the doctorate.  By participating in our programme you will receive help to successfully complete your research degree; consider and prepare for your career beyond completion; and share experiences and learn from those in the same boat- your peers.

Our programme caters for all levels of experience – from those new to doctoral research to those with more experience. There are a range of options, and you can choose the activities which are right for you at each stage of your research journey. More specifically, our programme covers the following areas:

  • Library & academic skills
  • Personal effectiveness
  • The Doctoral process
  • Communicating research
  • Technology for research
  • Career development

We are lucky to work with a wide group of tutors across campus and beyond who bring their expertise to our programme by facilitating our workshops. Many of our tutors already have their doctorate and are able to speak from their experience.

What support do you offer to doctoral researchers?

We offer a series of workshops of different formats and lengths, some are full day interactive workshops, and others a shorter bite-sized information based sessions. Doctoral researchers can find guidance on our webpages as to which workshops might be right for them. We operate a busy programme, and recognise the range of options can sometimes be overwhelming, so provide guidance on what might be useful to attend at different stages.

We also provide a series of online training modules and webinars (live online training sessions) covering a broad range of topics, so researchers can access the content of workshops at all times. In addition we try to collate external web resources that we think will be useful on our webpages, and so as not to reinvent the wheel!

There are many opportunities for doctoral researchers across campus, and chances to get involved with the researcher community, we try to pull these together to provide one place online that you can find this information. As well as providing information on other topics you are interested in, such as developing your career, technology for research, and guidance for new and part-time/distance researchers.

We also administer the Doctoral Overseas Conference Grant and Researcher Led Initiative Fund to support our doctoral researchers who are presenting at an overseas conference, or organising their own development event for researchers.

How can doctoral researchers get in touch?

By exploring our webpages, emailing us at or directly. We’re always pleased to meet up with researchers who have feedback about our programme, or would like to share ideas on a new development.

Our team coordinates this Doctoral School e-newsletter Doctoral Connections where researchers can keep up to date on current news and events.

We also look after the Doctoral School’s social media presence on twitter and facebook.

What's the most common question you are asked by doctoral researchers?

The most common question is when a particular workshop will run again- we really encourage you to add your name to waiting lists for workshops you wish to attend. We regularly repeat workshops, and if you’re on the waiting list you will get the first chance to book a place. We rely on our waiting lists to establish demand for workshops within our programme. 



Doctoral School