To get started, it is important to familiarise yourself with the Doctoral Graduate Attributes and understand the different components of REST and skills development. There are two systems in place - the REST Canvas site, and the Inspire skills development module. You can read more about these below. Start by registering in the Canvas site and reviewing the introductory materials. These will guide you through all the steps and resources.
So when I say one more change…
It might also be worth adding a section on Guiding Principles. I have this on Canvas. It justifies the need for training, so best put it on the website. Maybe after the Why focus on skills development section? This will become important when we establish skills development policy and procedure in the new year.
The Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) states that Doctoral Degree graduates need to have a systematic and critical understanding of a complex field of learning and specialised research skills for the advancement of learning and/or for professional practice.
Graduates at this level will have expert, specialised cognitive, technical and research skills in a discipline area to independently and systematically:
- engage in critical reflection, synthesis and evaluation
- develop, adapt and implement research methodologies to extend and redefine existing knowledge or professional practice
- disseminate and promote new insights to peers and the community
- generate original knowledge and understanding to make a substantial contribution to a discipline or area of professional practice
Graduates at this level will apply knowledge and skills to demonstrate autonomy, authoritative judgement, adaptability and responsibility as an expert and leading practitioner or scholar. They are expected to have high-level analytical, critical and data analysis skills relevant to their discipline. They must be good communicators, able to robustly defend their work, and justify their approach, methodology and findings. They must also be able to explain the implications of their work and how these relate to previous work in their particular discipline.
Australian Council for Graduate Research Good Practice Principles articulate a set of standards considered to be essential for the delivery of graduate research programs. Principle 3 on Candidate Development states that:
Graduate research candidates are supported to undertake original research and scholarly activities whilst developing key research and employability skills for academic and non-academic careers.
- With a primary objective of research and research skill development, transferable skill training is integrated within the higher degree program rather than separate and additional to it.
- Universities articulate the (non-research specific) skill sets that each candidate will acquire by the completion of their candidature
- Early assessment of the prior learning and skill level of every candidate, should inform the development of training programs for candidates from diverse educational, employment and cultural backgrounds
- The University offers relevant development opportunities that are aligned with each stage of the candidature. Supervisors support the development of discipline specific research skills, general academic skills and career planning.
- Candidates should have opportunities to develop skills and experience diverse research environments through collaboration, partnerships, internships, and national and international conference participation.
- Transferable skills developed and assessed as part of graduate research program are documented and formally recognised on graduation.
- The University periodically and systematically reviews the processes and outcomes of developmental activities for candidates.
Through the Graduate Attributes and REST program, Flinders University will guide you through the development of these skills as you move through your candidature.