Computer Laboratory

Researcher Development

Every student is required to complete and submit a Researcher Development log of his or her activities outside their research studies.

Transferable, generic skills are more general than those associated with your specific research topic. A full record of these will be useful for you in maintaining an accurate CV, and is also helpful that when the department makes bids to the University for funds for Researcher Development, it can demonstrate a good take-up of initiatives the Researcher Development Team and the Graduate Students Forum suggest.

No information which identifies an individual will be supplied outside the University.

Examples of researcher development training which should be included are:

  • attendance at lectures or courses, or less formal training, on:
    • Research Skills module
    • health and safety
    • risk assessment
    • first aid
    • writing or presentation skills
    • IT skills
    • intellectual property
    • research and project planning and management
    • generic research methods (including statistics)
    • research ethics
    • literature searching and library skills
    • laboratory demonstrating or supervision of undergraduate students
    • career planning and development
    • languages
  • supervising undergraduate student
  • preparation and delivery of presentations within or outside Cambridge
  • preparation of posters, reports, papers etc.
  • Graduate Student Forum membership
  • women@CL organisation team membership
  • Open Day participation
  • Outreach events

The above list is not exhaustive - if in doubt, it is better to include an item than to omit it.

The Computer Laboratory runs a number of useful courses, some in conjunction with the Graduate Development Office including:

  • Supervising Undergraduates
  • Finishing your PhD
  • Scientific Writing
  • Presentation Skills
  • 1-2-1 Skills Analysis
  • Planning and Managing Your Research
  • Voice projection
  • English pronunciation for foreign students
  • New PhD Examiners' Training (Computer Science only)

The Research Skills module (C00) (Computer Science students only), from the M.Phil in Advanced Computer Science, forms a compulsory component in the Certificate of Postgraduate Studies in Computer Science and subsequent registration for the Ph.D. Degree. The module includes 16 contact hours and 64 hours of self-study over Michaelmas Term. Only research students who have been awarded previously the M.Phil in Advanced Computer Science are exempt from taking the course in their first year.

Other short courses are listed on the Cambridge University Skills Portal and the CPPD Graduate Development Programme.

The Computer Laboratory also supports students wishing to take up foreign languages and has arranged that research students may join the Department of Engineering Language Unit. Students may choose to take classes in the following languages at beginners, intermediate or advanced levels:

  • French
  • German
  • Japanese
  • Spanish
  • Chinese

Further details may be found at the Language Unit web pages. Language courses offered by the Language Centre may also be supported on a case-by-case basis.

The Computer Laboratory co-hosts the Computer Lab/MSR Summer School which is open to first-year research students from the Computer Laboratory in Cambridge.

Forms are distributed to every student at the start of the academic year and should be submitted on 31 July (or closest Friday) regardless of the date you started in the Computer Laboratory.

Even if you have done nothing during the year, please return the form to the Graduate Education Manager, but given the very wide range of activities that can count as a researcher skill we are sure you will be able to log something.