There are many career options available to you as a postgraduate researcher (PGR) both inside and outside of academia. 

Planning your career

Your career aspirations may change throughout your research degree, and it is important that you engage with the professional development planning process as early as you can. One way to do this is by exploring Vitae’s Researcher Development Framework (RDF). The RDF is a tool that breaks down the knowledge, behaviours and attributes of successful researchers, many of which are transferable to careers outside of academia. 

Vitae, an organisation dedicated to the support and professional development of researchers, also offers a free, in-depth online PDP course, Professional Development Planning for Researchers.

The Researcher Careers section of the Vitae website provides inspiration and advice for PGRs who want to pursue an academic career and those who want to use their skills elsewhere. To view the content and receive regular e-bulletins and updates, you can register with Vitae using your university email address. 

The website provides a selection of e-books and toolkits on career planning and pathways of researchers. The Prospects website has useful resources on a wide range of careers and a free career planner and job matcher to enable you to transfer your research skills to a variety of sectors. 

Professional development opportunities 

There are many professional development opportunities available at the University through the Careers and Employability Service, the Graduate School and your Faculty. Whatever your career aspirations, engaging in such activities will help you to develop the skills that are relevant to your chosen career path. 

The Graduate School’s development programme includes face-to-face workshops and online courses. These range from training in research methods to sessions on project management and how to use LinkedIn to develop your career. 

Your faculty will also provide development opportunities. Contact your Faculty Research Degrees Team for more information. 

Teaching during your research degree can provide many useful skills that will benefit you whatever career you decide to pursue. Access teaching support at Manchester Met from the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) to help you to provide quality learning for your students. 

If you are looking for teaching experience in schools, get in touch with The Brilliant Club, a charity that seeks to increase access to universities by placing researchers in non-selective state schools, where they deliver a course of tutorials designed around their own original research. Researchers in Schools (run by the Brilliant Club) is a teacher training and development programme for those who have or are completing a doctorate. 

To develop your ability to make an impact with your research, and maintain a visible profile as a researcher, visit ResearchGate, a free online space that enables you to share your publications, get statistics, find jobs, and connect and collaborate with colleagues. If you would like to develop your writing skills, The Conversation is an online platform that you can use to blog about your work. 

For information about careers events for PGRs, visit SkillsForge.

Jobs while you study 

To find out about temporary on-campus job opportunities while you study, visit Jobs4Students

Find job opportunities here: 


Further help and support with your career

Use My Career Hub to find out about careers events, book a careers advice appointment, search for jobs, or ask a question using our e-guidance service. Log in using your Student ID and password.

My Career Hub

MMyou interactive careers centre provides a wide range of resources to support your career and professional development (log in through My Career Hub).

MMyou Careers Centre

Look at our guide on CVs for postgraduates and researchers on MMyou (requires a Career Hub log in).

CVs for Postgraduates and Researchers

Contact your Faculty Careers Team for further help and advice.

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