Activities for postgraduate researchers and research staff http://www.vitae.ac.uk/researchers
Vitae is now on Facebook! You can keep in touch with Vitae via Vitae fan page and Vitae GRADschools alumni page! http://www.facebook.com/vitae.fanpage.
We’re also on Twitter: http://twitter.com/vitae_news
The Researcher Development Framework is a useful career tool to enable you to identify skills you want to develop further, create an action plan and record evidence of your progress with the Professional Development Planner. Find out how other researchers have used the tool. http://www.vitae.ac.uk/rdfplanner
If you’re thinking ahead to your options for the future, the careers section of the Vitae website is full of information, including handy hints on writing your CV. http://www.vitae.ac.uk/careers
“The balanced researcher” booklet offers information to help prioritise and manage the many demands on your time. “The creative researcher” booklet offers practical information and advice for researchers on being creative in a research environment. “The engaging researcher” booklet offers practical tips on how public engagement can benefit you, your research and the public with whom you engage. http://www.vitae.ac.uk/researcherbooklets
Podcasts from the Digital researcher event are now available on http://www.vitae.ac.uk/dr11live and iTunes (http://bit.ly/9a21S5) . Vitae speak with Aleks Krotoski about being a digital researcher, and participants are interviewed about the day.
If you are a researcher with aspirations to manage your own research team, a new resource for PIs on the Vitae website will give you an insight into the role of principal investigator. http://www.vitae.ac.uk/pi
Develop your public engagement skills and keep updated on public engagement activities via ’the public engagement blog’ http://www.vitae.ac.uk/pe
The Engaging Researcher – This one day highly interactive workshop has been designed for researchers who are new to, or have some experience with public engagement. It will be held in Liverpool on 30 June 2011 http://www.vitae.ac.uk/engaging2011
Activities for research staff http://www.vitae.ac.uk/researchstaff
Research staff blog is a forum to discuss topics relevant to personal, professional and career
development for research staff. If you are interested in getting involved or learning more about it, please visit http://www.vitae.ac.uk/rsblog or contact Tennie Videler at email@example.com
Advancing in Academia is a one-day event aimed at postdoctoral researchers which will address how to succeed in a competitive and complex research environment. It will be held in Birmingham on 12 September 2011 http://www.vitae.ac.uk/aia2011
Activities for postgraduate researchers http://www.vitae.ac.uk/pgr
‘What’s up doc?‘ is a new blog which provides a forum for postgraduate researchers to share experience, give information and tips on matters relevant to them in a fun, yet informed way. It replaces GRADBritain, which has been a popular online magazine written by and for postgraduate researchers studying in the UK. http://www.vitae.ac.uk/whatsupdoc
Some of the topics currently on the blog are:
- Wade in on whether ‘Silver researchers’ (those doing a doctorate at a later stage of their career) offer a contribution to the postgraduate community
- Is the imposter syndrome rife among postgraduate researchers? Do you feel like an imposter?
- Read tips on presenting: One Moment’s Monument: Presenting Conference Papers
- Online publishing and plagiarism: keeping alert – What are the issues, and how to deal with them?
Sign up to PGR Tips and receive useful tips on different aspects of your research. The latest issue on your professional development http://www.vitae.ac.uk/pgrtips
Careers in Academia – NEW EVENT – is a one-day event aimed at early career postgraduate researchers which will address how to succeed in a competitive and complex research environment. It will be held in Birmingham on 13 September 2011 http://www.vitae.ac.uk/cia2011
Bournemouth, 14 – 17 June A FEW PLACES STILL AVAILABLE!
Windermere, 11 – 14 October
Audience: postgraduate researchers
The bookings are open for the 2 national GRADschools in 2011. Vitae GRADschools are designed to take an ‘experiential’ or ‘learning by doing’ approach. Whilst there is some element of presentations and information giving, for the most part, you will be actively participating in the sessions and activities. All courses are 3 days long and open to 80 postgraduate researchers. http://www.vitae.ac.uk/gradschools
The Growing Knowledge exhibition demonstrates the vision for future digital research services at the British Library, and provide a test bed for the evaluation of digital research tools and services that have the potential to support researchers’ needs. The exhibition consists of a number of features including digital signage, video demonstrations, interactive welcome animations and a prototype ‘Researcher’s tabletop’ application.
You are invited to attend one of the special sessions being run on Mondays, where you will be able to sample each of these components and hear an introductory talk by a British Library curator. A team from UCL is evaluating the initiative, and a researcher will be at the exhibition, too, and would like to chat to you about the tools and applications in my role as a researcher You can book an evaluation session at:
However, if you can’t visit on a Monday (or at the set time), but would still like to attend, please contact the researcher directly at:
Found this circulating on a JISCmail group:
Growing Knowledge: The evolution of research
12 October 2010 – 16 July 2011
Join the debate and take part in our exciting new exhibition of innovative digital research services and tools.
Visit our new exhibition and tell us what you think.
- Search large audio files and uncover clips that are relevant to your research
- Explore maps using advanced geospatial technologies
- Manipulate content across multiple media and save your work to return to later
- Find out about new online resources and collections specific to your research
You can access many of these tools and content over the web so you can experience the exhibition online or continue your guided journey here if you have already visited the Library.
Follow what people are saying about the exhibition on Twitter – #blgk
Help us evaluate
To help us understand your research needs for digital technologies, and to support your research requirements in the future, we would like you to tell us what you think.
When you visit the Growing Knowledge exhibition at the British Library or online, we will ask you to rate what you see and join the debate about the Library’s vision for its digital research future.
We will also be holding some growing Knowledge evaluation sessions at the Library. These will offer a short introduction to the Growing Knowledge content and concepts, a chance to explore the exhibition in detail, and a discussion with the Evaluation team. The sessions will take place on Mondays throughout the GK run, and last for approx 1.5 hours.
If you would like to sign up for one of the evaluation sessions and contribute to the Library’s digital research future, contact the Evaluation team now: firstname.lastname@example.org
*Excursions*, the Journal for Interdisciplinary Research, is based in the Sussex Doctoral School, and run by Sussex doctoral researchers. The journal is Open Access (freely available to all), online, and most importantly: peer-reviewed.
Which is why Excursions is looking for doctoral researchers and early career academics from all disciplines, to join their editorial team.
So if you’re interested in adding that something extra to your academic CV, come and find out more at one of the our introductory training sessions, to be held throughout the year. This term’s dates are:
- Weds, 3rd Nov, 2pm – 4.30pm in Friston Building FR 117
- Fri, 19th Nov, 2pm – 4.30pm in Pevensey 1, 0A2
Places are limited, so please book yours by email: email@example.com by 2nd November.
We look forward to meeting you!
The *Excursions *Editorial Board
What is Excursions?
If you missed the launch, here are the links to our four-part introduction to the Excursions journal: from inception to launch of the first issue:
- Sussex interdisciplinary e-journal to launch
- Beginning Excursions: The First Steps of a Postgraduate Journal
- OJS: e-Journal technology / Excursions – The Image
- Excursions: The Editorial Process and Structure of an Interdisciplinary Journal
And the recent call for papers:
NVivo is qualitative data analysis software, designed to assist you in your research. Unfortunately, it won’t find the answers for you, but it does a cracking job of organising your data and helping you to interrogate it. You can link your data internally and externally, use demographic variables, and explore relationships between participants and ideas.
In NVivo, an analytical project is broken down into two main parts: sources (the data) and nodes (containers for the coding of ideas or categories). Sources can be created in NVivo or imported to the project as documents of various types, such as interviews, field notes, project journals, images, or audio files. Nodes are created for any topic or category relevant to the project, and can be connected in ways to allow you to visualise and discover new connections. Sources or nodes can be explored either by browsing or by running queries. The ‘Externals’ folder of NVivo is used to link to documents held elsewhere that can be associated with your project. You can open the file in its native program and then record information on it in NVivo. The ‘Memo’ function allows you to add your thoughts and ideas on the project.
It’s quite difficult to grasp the potential of NVivo without having a particular project in mind. As a researcher in English Literature, it’s not an obvious tool I would expect to use. However, I was soon able to see how it would help me in my own work. For example, I’m currently working on an edited collection of interviews with late-Victorian women writers. In NVivo I can import the documents and then code the content to identify patterns. If I’m looking to compare their working environments, I could go through each interview to find where they mention this subject and then code it as a “working environment” node. In future, I could quickly generate a document collating all those references, either as just a list of citations, or as contextual paragraphs. The real power of NVivo is being able to quickly grab data that refers to a single theme or concept.
‘Cases’ are used for grouping together all data concerning a particular participant, and attributes can be assigned to them, eg gender, nationality, age, marital status. Once the data was in place for my project, I could use the search tool to find all instances of unmarried Scottish women writers talking about their working environment. The data can be generated as mind maps, showing the relationships and structure, and the results can be pasted into Word as an image.
I’ve only really scratched the surface of NVivo’s potential and there’s all sorts of other good stuff, such as the ability to analyse and annotate sound and video files. The main disadvantage is that it’s not a particularly intuitive package and requires a certain amount of commitment to overcome the initial brain pain. My preferred learning style is a chunky manual and a large cup of tea, but NVivo really needs a workshop. Fortunately, Technical Skills for Researchers (formerly SciPS) will be running sessions throughout the coming academic year. We’re also organising a surgery for existing NVivo users so they can get help with their own data.
NVivo has much to offer those whose research involves interviews or case studies. Although not vital in my particular field, it is nevertheless a useful tool and one that I shall continue using.
With our aggregated blog feed “Researcher Blogs” growing fast, we now have 7 contributers. But what if you want to subscribe to the Researcher Blogs feed and read the posts from somewhere other than the Doctoral School blog? Today’s guest blogger, Liz Thackray (lizit) explains…
If asked what Internet facility I would most miss, RSS feeds would come pretty high on my list. It is a facility I use daily for keeping up with news and information. At it’s simplest (and it does call itself ‘really simple’), I am able to click on the orange and white icon on any page where it is available and choose to add the page to my Google Reader account. Each time I open Google Reader, I am shown instantly how many updates there have been and I can choose to view them – and because it just shows me the headlines, I can decide which to read in full and which to ignore.
If you haven’t discovered the Commoncraft videos, they are brilliant for describing various technologies, and there is an excellent one explaining just how RSS feeds work. It also describes how to set up Google Reader for accessing RSS feeds.
Although there are other RSS readers, I find Google Reader is most convenient: my browser home page is set to Google, so it is quick and easy to click on “more” and on “Reader” and check what unread changes there are. As I have to actually go to the Reader page, I don’t get annoying pop-ups every time there is an update, but I choose when to check the feed and whether to read the updates. It can still act as a displacement activity, but it is my choice if I choose to be distracted!
I find RSS particularly useful for keeping up to date with blogs. I subscribe to around 60 at the moment plus the new Researcher Blog feed available from the Doctoral School blog. It keeps me in touch with what other people are doing, and I can get involved in discussions with other researchers on aspects of their work – or my work – which are of interest. I’ve found quite a number of senior academics and others working in my field are prolific bloggers, and it is handy to know what they are thinking about and working on – or to see their holiday photos and remember they are human too!
I also subscribe to some of the BBC feeds to keep me in touch with what is going on in the rest of the world.
If you haven’t set it up yet, I do recommend setting up an RSS feed and subscribing to both the Doctoral School blog:
and the Researcher Blogs feed:
– it’s another way of building up the community and of breaking down that sense of isolation too commonly experienced by DPhil students!
… and if you have a blog – do remember to fill in the form and get it added to the Researcher blog list…
A doctoral researcher asked me about the QuickSearch and SubjectSearch options in the Electronic Library:
Why is it that I cannot select either a) all sets; or b) no sets?
Good question. So I asked Helen in the Library’s Research Liaison section, and she very helpfully gave the following explanation…
Quick search and Subject search…. I must admit I’m not the biggest fan of these as search tools for doctoral students and in any 1-2-1s I tend to suggest that people use the databases individually. My reasons are that not all databases can be searched using Quick/Subject search, that the results often come back in a strange order so the 50th ranked article may be more relevant than the 1st, and that people may really need to tailor their search terms for particular databases (eg needing to be more specific with search terms within a database that searches the fulltext like JSTOR, not needing to use terms like ‘psychology’ in PsychInfo but needing to use them in the big, general databases). If they’re all being searched at once you lose the ability to do this.
Phew, I don’t mean to be negative about it, it’s a great resource for undergrads who just need *some* articles, not a comprehensive search. Dphils may want to use it to get a sense of which databases might have useful results but may struggle when it comes to more systematic searching.
To actually answer your question, the sets in Quick Search cannot be altered and each set searches databases for a particular subject area that have been selected by the staff here. It’s designed so people can just start searching. It is, however, possible to customise the sets in Subject Search so that you basically create your own set of useful databases that can then be searched. There’s a guide to doing this in the yellow box on the front page of the Electronic Library that would probably be more use than my efforts to explain – there’s a webcast option or a standard PDF guide. I think there is a limit to the number of databases that can be searched at once or it would just take far too long to get any results.
Hope this helps, feel free to send anybody my way if they have any more questions!
So there you go :) If you’d like to ask further questions of Helen, you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org