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Developing Career Choices for ‘Authoring a PhD – Getting Started’ Kate Daubney PhD Careers Adviser.

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Presentation on theme: "Developing Career Choices for ‘Authoring a PhD – Getting Started’ Kate Daubney PhD Careers Adviser."— Presentation transcript:

1 Developing Career Choices for ‘Authoring a PhD – Getting Started’ Kate Daubney PhD Careers Adviser

2 Today’s Topics Who am I? –Assessing yourself What are my choices? –Defining possible careers How can I choose? –Ways to build towards a good decision What’s next? –Preparing for good career development


4 Stages in good career management Self Awareness ↓ Career Exploration ↓ Decision-making and Goal-setting ↓ Job Search (and success!) ↓ Professional Development

5 Self Awareness Who am I? How did I get here? What expectations did I bring with me about what follows my PhD? What expectations do others (supervisor, friends, family, others) have about what follows my PhD?

6 Who am I? Most people know ‘who they are’: You are a combination of your existing experiences and choices But it depends on who you’re talking to… 3 exercises to explore this – Stand Up! Move Round!

7 Self-presentation Exercises The ‘In the same boat’ Exercise The ‘Cocktail Party’ Exercise The ‘Careers Event Networking’ Exercise

8 Tools to ‘find yourself’ Psychometric tests, e.g. MBTI –Having a ‘label’ can clarify what parts of the preceding exercises you found easy or hard –Can indicate what work environments you will flourish in –Being labelled can also be off-putting! –More info at the Careers Service

9 How did I get here? Some exercises to map your route… We are seeking clues to what matters to you –Recurring elements, passions, positives and negatives

10 ‘Greater than the sum of your parts’ List your roles (PhD student, bank intern, rowing champion etc):

11 What shape is your network? List everyone you know:

12 The Master CV The CV is a formal ‘route map’ of your experience Important to have an up-to-date CV on file Make a master with everything you have ever done on it Be prepared to extract versions for different audiences – like the networking exercises

13 WEIGHT The WEIGHT of expectation… What does ‘Doing a PhD’ imply? Some exercises to explore that…

14 What expectations of the PhD did you bring with you?

15 I’m a PhD Student… In groups, list the reactions you get when you say that!

16 Fighting back! It’s natural to want to reject other views of you and what you should do with your life That includes your supervisor’s views… Recognise expectations, assess them, then decide whether to accept or reject them Objective views of yourself can be useful, but only if they are objective!

17 So far, we have… + Clues to your personality type - your interests, strengths, skills + Clues to the influences over your path now and in the future – work, people, experiences = Add these clues together and try to assess yourself objectively – I can help with this!

18 Defining Possible Careers Customarily PhD graduates either go into: Academic careers Non-academic careers Increasingly PhD graduates are seeking a crossover: –Academic career with ‘real world’ input –Non-academic career with research credibility

19 And to help you choose, always… R esearch – find out more information T alk – to your network T ry – it out: intern, volunteer, shadow R eflect – think it over, is it right for me?

20 So what is an Academic career?

21 Academic Roles Lecturer (Professor/Assistant Prof (US)) Teaching Fellow Research Fellow Research Officer/Project Manager Academic Administrator (e.g. head of research degrees office)

22 Teaching and other career-building opportunities during your PhD Occasional research assistant Research assistant or research officer (f-t) Graduate teaching assistant Tutorial fellow or lecturer (f-t) Journal editor or sub-editor Book reviewer Consultant to outside bodies (govt or others)

23 How to stand out: Teaching Get experience: –Teaching –Designing courses –Supervising student coursework/dissertations –Examining/assessing student work Undertake GTA training Get LSE PGCertHE

24 How to stand out: Research Get experience of research as an ORA, RA or RO Present papers at academic conferences to raise your profile and get feedback Review books for journals and act as consultant to outside bodies Publish articles in good refereed journals or book chapters in edited volumes

25 Building an academic network Attend conferences and seminars in your field to meet the ‘big players’ and make contact with peers Look out for non-academic forums for relevant info/contacts as well Get involved – join postgrad networks, conference organisations, national and international professional bodies etc.

26 What academic employers look for Publications, publications, publications! Understand RAE and the nature of HE funding Relevant teaching experience Research experience, especially on funded projects Credentials – have they heard of you? Presentation skills and admin experience

27 Applying for academic positions while doing your PhD Application pack: –Appropriate CV with relevant experience –Cover letter that addresses their expectations as well as what you offer –Research statement On the day: –Presentation to demonstrate ability to communicate (teaching or research) –Panel interview

28 BREAK Any Questions?

29 Non-Academic Careers

30 Typically c.75% of LSE PhDs go into academia So LSE PhD routes into non-academic careers tend to be very diverse Current LSE PhDs are aiming for: –Niche media analysis and consultancy firm –FSA –US literacy NGO –V&A museum –World Bank –McKinsey management consultancy –Music Industry

31 So much choice… Different strategies for narrowing the options: Each approach overlaps with the others Do your research now, identify your options, try them out Subject or Role Network Dream Job

32 Jobs that evolve from your Subject Build on your specialist expertise –Direct pursuit of research interests in real world –Applying subject expertise in other contexts –Continuing to evolve subject expertise e.g. Consultancy or policy development in your field (corporate, govt, or independent) e.g. Communicating your subject to lay audience

33 Jobs that evolve from a Role PhDs have lots of transferable skills These can be summarised into role types: –e.g. researching, communicating, advocacy, problem solving, project management You might need to learn a new sector, but your core adaptability is high Broader opportunities generated by this search

34 Networking…

35 Using your Network to find work When you’ve completed your network list, add your contacts’ jobs This generates individual roles, not just job types Do your contacts have jobs that interest you? Find out more – analyse for skills, challenges, opportunities Work outwards from specific roles

36 Dream job Everyone should have a dream job You may not know what it is yet But you know how it would make you feel –Creative, influential, original, courageous… Use it as an endpoint and plan backwards to now However far off it seems, it is still attainable in some form

37 Dream into Action… Whether you are changing direction or not: –Identify people who have this job already –How did they get there? –What qualifications, contacts, experience do I need? –When/how will I start – during or post PhD? –Have a plan B, C, D… Alternative routes will improve your chances of success

38 Getting Experience A common theme in career planning is getting experiences to help you decide Internships are a way to do this Sharon Bray LSE CS Internships Co-ordinator

39 What internship? Full/Part time Paid/Voluntary Project based

40 What do you get out of it?

41 What do they get out of it?

42 Applications Research and networking – you know what to do… Cover letters – the good, the bad and the ugly Follow up – it’s not nagging

43 LSE Internships Summer and Term time Policy, Parliament, CSR, Media Policy and Development. Register on My Careers Service and at

44 So away you go…! Check online job sites, trade press for job roles and company profiles Internships and volunteering for experience and insight Plan multiple routes to your dream job Very clueless? Consider a skills audit or psychometric test Shake your network!

45 Any Questions? Kate Daubney Sharon Bray 30 minute appointments with Kate, Wed and Thurs afternoons Email and phone support

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