Progressing your Academic Career: Researcher Career Development Tool and Mentoring

For those set on pursuing an academic career this post is for you! In order to take ‘active management’ of your career you need to understand the possible academic career paths available to you, reflect on your development and start to undertake activities to support your career progression. So what might these ‘activities’ be?

A good starting point is to make use of the Research Career Tool.

In order to identify areas of strength and those that maybe need developing

Another useful source of support is the IAD Micro Workshop ‘Benchmarking’.

Allowing for comparisons with colleagues in your field

Another useful strategy is to speak to those already doing the role that you are aiming for. These individuals can provide accurate insights and make suggestions on where to focus your energy

Careers Informational interviews page.

Lastly if you are thinking about gaining an academic mentor don’t be afraid to have informal discussions with colleagues and ask for introductions to any whom you think could help you with career related queries. For further information see the IAD pages on Mentoring.

This blog was written by Eleanor Hennige.  Eleanor is one the IAD’s Research Staff Careers Consultants, supporting fixed-term research staff at the University with their career planning and options.  In addition to running 1:1 appointments, she also delivers our suite of career workshops, career discussion groups and works with Schools/Research Staff Societies on career specific events and workshops.  Eleanor works on a part-time basis (5 mornings a week) and can be contacted at

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