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Scientist support resources

There are a number of issues that can arise at some point during a researcher’s career and sometimes it’s hard to know where to look for advice and support. We have compiled a list of resources that we hope will be a useful starting point for those experiencing difficulties. Our resources cover topics such as: common challenges in research, maintaining a good work-life balance, and dealing with bullying and harassment at work. These resources are by no means exhaustive and not all advice will be relevant for your needs and situation, so please use discretion. If you find a good resource you think we should include, then let us know!

We also published an article on bullying in academia in the May 2017 issue of our magazine Immunology News


For PhD students

  • Vitae is a non-profit organisation that campaigns on behalf of researchers. Their website is a large resource with advice for students at all stages of their PhD, including common challenges, writing up, and careers advice.
  • Find a PhD is where most new PhD projects are listed, and contains advice articles covering funding, application tips, and common challenges in postgraduate research. The site also hosts a postgraduate advice forum.
  • The National Union of Students offers general advice on funding, mental health, and getting the most from your postgraduate degree.
  • Student Minds is a UK charity for student mental health. They run support workshops on many university campuses, and have a number of online advice articles.
  • The Thesis Whisperer is an Australian online blog newspaper with articles on academic writing, the student-supervisor relationship, and careers. 
  • University Students’ Unions should be able to direct postgraduate students to local advice and support services.

For research staff in academia and industry

  • Vitae also has a number of resources for research staff on starting a new position, personal development, and career options in academia. It also provides advice for PI’s on supervising doctoral candidates. There are several resources on maintaining work-life balance and good mental health.
  • The Universities and College Union offer their members help and advice on a range of issues, and have freely available online resources on discrimination, bullying, and harassment.
  • The Prospect Union represents professionals including scientists, and offer their members help and advice on a range of issues.
  • The Research Whisperer is also a good source of articles on research culture, funding, networking, and career progression in academia.  

For research staff within the NHS

For research staff in veterinary roles