Career Planning Course for PhD Candidates

Next program starts Tuesday 8 October
Register below to secure your space

Your career success depends on planning

As an early career researcher, you quickly reach a stage where the sharp focus of PhD study, or the demands of initial postdoc positions, give way to insistent questions about the future.

Questions like: 'What do I want from life and my professional career?' or, 'What are my options and how do I go about exploring them?'

This page explains how our Career Control for Researchers training enables you to explore your preferences and options, and develop a practical plan to progress your career. You can register below.

smiling male student taking part in career planning course for researchers

How does this training help?

The Career Control for Researchers program gives you the tools, guidance and confidence to take charge of your career direction, determine your own priorities and accelerate your progress.

Successfully taking charge ultimately means you:

  • secure positions you want, on conditions you prefer, not just the next research job;
  • get involved in work that stretches, stimulates and fulfils you;
  • achieve a genuine balance between your work and what you want from your personal life.

Quick link to a PDF of the program's structure and components.

Two ideas for funding the course fee...

  1. 1
    Ask your supervisor to fund this training. Clarity of your career direction helps your advisor be a more effective mentor. Many supervisors are happy to provide financial support for training, you just have to ask!
  2. 2
    Ask your Department or School to sponsor your PhD cohort. Many of our collaborations with institutions started because researchers like you asked their employers for this training.
    Do you think your Department/ School or Faculty would be interested in offering this program to you and your colleagues?
    If so, please contact us to discuss how we can help you make this happen.

How will you benefit?

When you complete the program, you can expect to be equipped with:

  • clarity about the strengths, preferences and goals that should inform your career choices;
  • certainty about the talents, values and attitudes that will anchor your career;
  • specific career destinations to target for the short, medium and long term;
  • a comprehensive personal career plan;
  • a good understanding of the transferrable skills you need to make preferred career options possible.

How will the program fit your schedule

Career Control for Researchers is designed for early career researchers engaged in PhDs or working full time as postdocs. It is delivered online in various formats so you can choose when and how to take part.

A timeframe of 8 weeks lets you pace yourself and join the live web-based discussions with career specialists in the weeks between modules.

The average time commitment to complete the modules is 2 hours every 2 weeks, to fit in with the already full schedules of most researchers.

What participants say about
the career training

"The program provided an opportunity for me to overview my working life from a 10,000 ft height. It made me think deeply about the real motivation of my life and helped me crystalize my career goals. More importantly, it showed me alternative career pathways and helped me map out a detailed action plan step-by-step toward my goals."

"The program covered a wide range of topics that are highly relevant to a postgrad trying to work out what direction they wish to take in their career, and even just figuring out what the options are to start with."

"The step by step pace led to some in-depth soul searching and helped me focus on what I am good at.  I have totally changed my expectations of career post-doc and feel very relieved that there are a lot more options out there for when I finish."

"I really appreciated that this course provided an holistic perspective of career paths and that a red thread was wellbeing and how to find the things that drives and motivates you while balancing family life or activities that you enjoy doing in your free time. I enjoyed that the course was hands-on. Thank you!"

Career Control for Researchers course structure

One of the program's 4 core modules is made available online every 2 weeks. These modules are paired with interactive webinar sessions in intervening weeks, led by the program providers, to address participants' questions and give advice on specific career development issues.

The program concludes in Week 8 with a live session to help participants identify their existing transferrable skills and which capabilities they need to develop further.

Program content

  • 4 online modules (written and audio formats).
  • Live webinars - moderated by PostdocTraining: Q&A and peer discussion.
  • A bonus module on transferrable skills needed to reach short and longer-term career destinations.
  • Free access to the Career Options Masterlist, an extensive database covering dozens of career paths pursued successfully by researchers, within academia and beyond.
  • Researchers retain lifetime access to the program material and all the resources (since career planning is an ongoing process).
  • Participants can also join a closed LinkedIn forum moderated by PostdocTraining to continue exchanges on career progression with research peers.

Note: The average time commitment to complete the modules is 2 hours every 2 weeks, depending on the amount of detail you want to include in your analysis and planning documents.

Register now to secure your place in this career planning course 
for researchers for just US$170

* The next program cycle starts on Tuesday 8 October 2024: register now to secure your place *

We will send you instructions about your participation when you register, to the email address you provide, with information about logging in as a member. Once the course starts, access to material is on-demand through a dedicated program portal so you can take the training when you want, where you want.