PhD Interview advice -Potential Training needs?

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easack123
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If a PhD supervisor asks me about potential training needs, what do they mean by this? Also any other PhD interview advice is welcome
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QuentinM
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(Original post by easack123)
If a PhD supervisor asks me about potential training needs, what do they mean by this? Also any other PhD interview advice is welcome
Hey What PhD are you interviewing for?

Definitely need to be prepared for this question as most universities will now expect you to identify and pursue training to meet these needs, so having a rough idea before you start helps. Think now are there any particular skills you want to learn that are relevant to the work you are/will be doing?

For myself, I'm on a neuroscience PhD, but for some experimental analysis I can produce big data sets so learning to programme/write code to automate the processing of this data I something I'm pursuing at the moment. I'm also interesting in including teaching in some form in my future career so I'm working towards HEA accreditation-basically I have to prove I've taught in various situations and I get an extra "qualification" of sorts to show I have some teaching experience. You could have plenty of others-maybe you want to learn a new language because it will help with your project (e.g. you have a placement abroad and might need to learn Spanish). I'd have at least 1 thing to mention as a possible training need.

In terms of general tips, you will probably have to give a presentation so make sure it's clear. You will definitely be asked "Why do you want to do a PhD" so be ready for that one too! Any other questions let me know I'm a veteran of 5 PhD interviews so I'd be happy to help
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easack123
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(Original post by QuentinM)
Hey What PhD are you interviewing for?

Definitely need to be prepared for this question as most universities will now expect you to identify and pursue training to meet these needs, so having a rough idea before you start helps. Think now are there any particular skills you want to learn that are relevant to the work you are/will be doing?

For myself, I'm on a neuroscience PhD, but for some experimental analysis I can produce big data sets so learning to programme/write code to automate the processing of this data I something I'm pursuing at the moment. I'm also interesting in including teaching in some form in my future career so I'm working towards HEA accreditation-basically I have to prove I've taught in various situations and I get an extra "qualification" of sorts to show I have some teaching experience. You could have plenty of others-maybe you want to learn a new language because it will help with your project (e.g. you have a placement abroad and might need to learn Spanish). I'd have at least 1 thing to mention as a possible training need.

In terms of general tips, you will probably have to give a presentation so make sure it's clear. You will definitely be asked "Why do you want to do a PhD" so be ready for that one too! Any other questions let me know I'm a veteran of 5 PhD interviews so I'd be happy to help
Hi! Thanks for this I'm interviewing for an English Lit PhD with a view to teaching and lecturing in the future so I'm thinking opportunity to teach undergrads would be a training need for me?
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QuentinM
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(Original post by easack123)
Hi! Thanks for this I'm interviewing for an English Lit PhD with a view to teaching and lecturing in the future so I'm thinking opportunity to teach undergrads would be a training need for me?
The training need would be more teaching experience and how you accomplish that would be opportunities to teach undergrads (and maybe masters students) in various ways (one-to-one, groups etc).
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Keele Postgraduate
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(Original post by easack123)
Hi! Thanks for this I'm interviewing for an English Lit PhD with a view to teaching and lecturing in the future so I'm thinking opportunity to teach undergrads would be a training need for me?
Hi easack123,

It will depend on your specific PhD topic but training needs can include difficult language training (if you need to learn Latin to read medieval texts for example), archival training (to handle old books/manuscripts), palaeography training (for reading old handwriting), research skills training (for organising your research/completing a literature review/learning a particular methodology), media training etc.

It's certainly worth mentioning career development and teaching opportunities - especially if you want to pursue an academic career - but those tend not to be seen as 'training' opportunities because they're usually not directly related to your PhD project but more to your wider career goals. It's still certainly worth asking about these opportunities - getting the chance to teach or support to complete a relevant teaching qualification (such as HEA membership) is important so it's useful to know if sessional teaching is something your prospective university can offer - but your training needs should also include things that will help you complete the PhD itself.

Hope that helps!

Amy Louise
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