Welcome to CRDI SkillsLog
The CRDI SkillsLog is a facility to track and record transferable skills during PhD and Postdoctoral training, with support from mentors.
A definition of a transferable skill is an ability developed in one environment that can be applied in other environments. Here we are focusing on skills that are valued across employment sectors. The aim is to help develop tools to succeed, whether in a key position in academia working with industry, or through a career path that takes the individual outside academia.
Transferable skills go beyond what is learnt in a formal context (e.g. as expressed in the learning outcomes of an education module). Much of the work done during a PhD or Postdoctoral research project has the potential to contribute to transferable skills development. CRDI SkillsLog provides a blended platform for programme leads to incorporate this into Education & Development.
SkillsLog in Practice: As used in the CTRSP
The MMI Clinical & Translational Research Scholars Programme (CTRSP; 2011-2016) was a structured 4-year PhD programme for science graduates, with the objective of developing disease-focused researchers able to bridge gaps between basic scientists, clinical scientists and industry.
During Year 1 of the 4-year programme, the 25 CTRSP Scholars participated in graduate education modules and practical placements in industry, in academic research labs and in clinical research facilities.
- Each CTRSP Scholar had access to their own personal online SkillsLog
- On completion of each PhD component (e.g. education module or practical placement), it was listed in their SkillsLog under 'Add Transferable Skills'. Scholars could also add their own components (e.g attending an international meeting or a particular aspect of their PhD Research)
- On selecting a PhD component under 'Add Transferable Skills', Scholars were prompted with a list of transferable skills. They simply selected the skills that they felt had been acquired or improved through participating in that component, and explained briefly how they acquired/improved each transferable skill selected
- Each Scholars shared their SkillsLog during regular meetings with external industry mentors who advised on further transferable skills Development and producing a competitive CV
Notably, only a year after graduation, over 50% of the CTRSP Scholars in employment held positions in industry (see the CTRSP Alumni webpage).
Irish Universities’ PhD Graduates’ Skills
This skills statement, a key output of the Irish Universities Association Strategic Innovation Fund Fourth Level Ireland project, describes the desired learning outcomes and skills that PhD students may develop during their studies. Students develop these skills through their research and additional taught modules.
See the document here
The MMI Clinical & Translational Research Scholars Programme was funded under the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI) Cycle 5, and co-funded under the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).