Presenting a Poster or Giving a Presentation??

Will you be presenting a poster or giving a presentation at a conference or event?? We have a number of workshops which can help!

Designing Effective Slides (12/2/15)

More information and bookingPresenting the idea on a black board

Poster Production (24/2/15)

More information and booking

Presenting Made Easy – Presentation Techniques (9/3/15)

More information and booking

Presenting Made Easy – Delivering Presentations (19/3/15)

More information and booking


Seven Secrets of a Highly Successful Research Student 20/2/15

This semester we have a guest speaker, Hugh Kearns of Flinders University, Australia presenting a workshop ‘Seven Secrets of a Highly Successful Research Student’ on 20/2/15.

Hugh Kearns BAgSc, MEd, MMHS

Hugh Kearns is recognised internationally as a public speaker, educator and researcher. He regularly lectures at universities across the world and has recently returned from a lecture tour of the UK and the US which included lectures at Oxford, Harvard and Stanford.

His areas of expertise include self-management, positive psychology, work-life balance, learning and creativity. He draws on over twenty years of experience as a leading training and development professional within the corporate, financial, education and health sectors in Ireland, Scotland, New Zealand and Australia. He has coached individuals, teams and executives in a wide range of organisations in the public and private sectors.

Hugh lectures and researches at Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia. He is widely recognised for his ability to take the latest research in psychology and education and apply it to high-performing people and groups. As a co-author with Maria Gardiner, he has published six books which are in high demand both in Australia and internationally.

Workshop Description

What do research higher degree (RHD) students do to finish on time, to overcome isolation, doubt and writer’s block, and to enjoy the process? And just as importantly what do they do in order to spend guilt-free time with their family and friends and perhaps even have holidays? If this sounds appealing, then this session will be of particular use to you.

This workshop describes the key habits that our research and experience with thousands of students shows will make a difference to how quickly and easily you complete your RHD. Just as importantly, these habits can greatly reduce the stress and increase the pleasure involved in completing a RHD.

The workshop helps you to understand how to increase your effectiveness and outcomes in the following key areas:

  • how you deal with your supervisor
  • how you structure your study time
  • your attitude (or lack thereof!) in relation to your research
  • dealing with writer’s block or having difficulty writing
  • getting the help you need when you are stuck
  • juggling multiple commitments and never having enough time
  • keeping on going when the going gets tough

More information and booking:

Edinburgh Local Gradschool – Time out from your PhD

Guest blog post from Silke Reeploeg, University of the Highlands and Islands, on her experience of attending Gradschool in 2014.

I very much enjoyed attending the Edinburgh GradSchool in 2014. I am a part-time PhD student with the University of the Highlands and Islands and based on the Shetland Islands, so the 4 day course – apart from its course content – also provided a welcome chance to network with EHGradschool tower pic (2)other students and staff from both Edinburgh and across Scotland.   Needless to say the nearby cafes and bars received the odd post-course visit, and it was great to be able to reflect on each day in such great company!

The course tutors were from a mixture of backgrounds, industry and academia, and certainly made us all feel motivated and I enjoyed our team-building session on the first day, which was less cringe-inducing than expected. The mixture of both science and humanities students made for entertaining group work, with paper towers being constructed and innovative business ideas thought up by day 4. If you are in the last year(s) of your PhD, you should not only attend because you will learn specific skills such as communicating your research/thoughts/wild ideas to people outside your department, but also just to rediscover your subject through the eyes of other people. Yes, we learned about problem solving, time management, project management – but perhaps the most important skills were those intangible ones, such as gaining confidence and communicating to variety of audiences. Of course there were the invariable venn diagrams and personality tests, but let’s face it – it is useful to discover that being an introvert pretending to be an extrovert, and then changing your personality preference mid-afternoon, is ok. No. Seriously. It is. There are a lot of variables. Especially coffee!

One of the things that benefitted everyone were the graphs and statistics used when considering future career options. Showing a room full of potential academics the fact that only 20 per cent of them will actually get a chance to work in academia provided a needed reality check. Plans B and C should definitely be part of PhD training more explicitly (and not just during the last year of your PhD) – a point made during the lively follow-on discussions several times. And, talking of lively discussions: in this world of REF assessments and continuous peer-review, it was great to create (with the help of our tutors) a non-judgemental, playful work environment for those 4 days, which allowed blue-sky thinking and fun to flourish. As we proceeded to hone our reflective skills and the last day drew to a close, I certainly took this sense of fun with me, and left reinvigorated to carry on doing academia and, hopefully, carry on having fun!

Let me just finish this coffee.

The Edinburgh local GRADschool is an experiential 3-day non-residential learning course, designed for doctoral researchers in the last 18 months of their PhD, aiming to raise participants’ awareness of their personal and professional transferable skills.  The next Gradschool will run on Wednesday 15th – Friday 17th April 2015.  For more information see:

Business and Enterprise Training 2015

Do you have entrepreneurial ambitions or a desire to develop your career in a business environment? If so then the IAD’s business and enterprise training may be of interest . . .

 The Institute for Academic Development’s business and enterprise training workshops support students and staff who want to gain broader business skills and knowledge to enhance their career options, and supports those who specifically have a business idea they are interested in taking to market. The following workshops are running in Semester 2:

  • Business Strategy and Market Research, 20th January 2015
  • Business Finance, 3rd February 2015imagesCA9VGUKMll
  • Networking4Success, 10th February 2015
  • Introducing Intellectual Property for Innovation and Business, 12th February 2015
  • PR for your business, 24th February 2015
  • Digital Marketing, 3rd March 2015

For more information, and to book visit:

Come along to the courses and find out more information and start developing those business and enterprise skills!!

Happy New Year to all Postgraduate Researchers!

Happy New Year and a prosperous 2015 from the IAD!  imagesCAJDXVCV

As a new year starts we continue to provide a range of resources and workshops for Postgraduate Researchers.  Take a look at some of the things we are offering this year:

  • Writing Workshops: We offer a range of writing workshops including Getting Started, Grammar, Writing for Publication and Writing Abstracts.
  • New courses: This year we have added several new courses to our programme, including: Designing Creativity and Innovation within Research, Beating Writers Block, Viva Survivor, Designing Effective Slides, Ease the Load: Feel Good About your Busy Life
  • Gradschool: Each year we run an Edinburgh Local Gradschool for late stage PhD students.  This year’s Gradschool will take place on Wednesday 15th – Friday 17th April 2015.
  • 3 Minute Thesis: The third annual 3 Minute Thesis Competition will take place on the 25th June 2015.  This year we are offering training to anyone interested in taking part in this competition
  • Online Courses: We have two new online courses available via Learn – Introductory Statistics for Life Scientists and A Beginners Guide to Imaging for Scientists

For more information on all of the above please see: