Training and development

We are a signatory to the Researcher Career Development Concordat and have recently retained the HR Excellence in Research Award.

This demonstrates our commitment to create a thriving research culture and support our research staff, with tailored personal and professional development programmes. 

Our training programmes are overseen by Keele’s Institute for Innovation and Teaching Excellence (KIITE).

The Institute brings together expertise from across the University: academic developers, student learning experts, learning technologists and employability consultants. Together, these staff form a unique Programme Design Consultancy whom, alongside the Keele Doctoral Academy (KDA), design and underpin our distinctive training experience. 

Whether you are a PGR student, Postdoctoral Researcher or a new academic, we can offer you a suite of workshops, events, internal and external resources delivered throughout the year.

This choice enables you to develop the skills you personally need during your postdoctoral degree and beyond, whether that be within academia, industry or elsewhere.   

The workshops, events and resources are mapped to the internationally renowned Researcher Development Framework (RDF), using its four principle domains:


The RDF, developed by Vitae during a comprehensive consultation with Researchers, is the essential reference for all researchers.

It describes the knowledge, behaviours and attributes required to be a successful researcher and is a useful tool to plan and support your academic, personal and career development. Additionally, for students it is useful to inform the evolution of the Professional Development Learning Plan (PDLP), helping structure conversations with Supervisors, linking to researcher activity and skill development.

This programme is specifically designed to help you develop the personal and professional skills required during doctoral study and is a great way to meet research students from across the University.     

Courses cover topics such as:

  • Plagiarism
  • How to work with your supervisor
  • Planning your final year including preparing for your viva
  • Poster skills
  • Writing literature reviews
  • What happens after your first annual review (progression)
  • Teaching and demonstrating

For a full list of KIITE's courses, online resources and to book, visit here.

If you are an international student looking for additional support with academic English writing, speaking or listening then our Language Centre can help. More information available here.

Useful links

This programme is specifically designed to help you develop your skill sets and is a great way to meet and network with researchers from across the University.

Courses cover topics such:

  • Blogging
  • Broadcast media
  • How to communicate confidently
  • How to achieve research impact
  • Open Access and the REF
  • The Human Tissue Act
  • Critical appraisals
  • Intellectual Property
  • Job applications, CVs and interviews
  • How to keep up-to-date with your research

For a full list of KIITE's courses, online resources and to book, visit here.

Useful links‌

This programme will help you to develop as a supervisor and will highlight amendments to University PGR policy and process. It is also a great way to meet other supervisors and share experiences.

Courses cover topics such as:

  • How to get started as a PGR supervisor/Prof Doc supervisor
  • How to support your students to achieve success
  • The milestones for a PGR/Prof Doc student
  • The role of panel members conducting first annual student reviews
  • How to have honest conversations
  • Project leadership
  • The role of internal viva examiners
  • The role of viva chairs

For a full list of KIITE's courses, online resources and to book, visit here.

Useful links

There are a number of ways in which you can apply for funding to attend a training or networking event.

Individual Faculties offer schemes internally and to find out more, please contact your Postgraduate Research Administrator directly:

Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences (FMHS)
Faculty of Natural Sciences (FNS)
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (HUMS)

Alternatively, there are external funding schemes you can apply for with small pots of money available. 


This search tool incorporates funding schemes from several providers and can be filtered to suit individual requirements.

Research Professional:

Keele has an account to use this search tool. Again, it can be filtered to suit individual requirements but you must use it from a Keele PC or register for an off site log in.