Life Sciences Research for Lifelong Health
PhD Induction day

PhD Training

Babraham offers a first-class Graduate Training Programme: while the emphasis is on qualifying students for a career in research at international level, careful attention is also paid to transferable skills and career advice so that those few students electing not to stay at the bench can instead use their skills productively. Students are not ‘extra pairs of hands’ to be squeezed into a lab whenever possible, but instead a carefully selected, valued and nurtured addition to academic life at the Institute.

In addition to training given in the laboratory, the Institute offers a wide variety of courses to equip students with a range of transferable skills suited to future job markets. The training courses are continually monitored and updated by the Graduate Committee following student feedback. They consist of a number of compulsory core courses, together with optional training courses individually tailored to the needs of each student.
Courses are given on topics including: 

  • Scientific writing
  • Intellectual property
  • Commercial awareness
  • Scientific ethics
  • Presentation skills
  • Time management
  • Media training
  • A range of IT and information handling courses
  • Project Management
  • Bioinformatics 
  • Networking and team working 
  • Computational skills
  • Data handling and reporting techniques
  • Mathematical skills

Most of the direct techniques needed for research projects are already available at Babraham or are developed by the students on-site as part of their practical training. Should it be necessary to attend another institution or course, then funding is made available.

Advanced Research Training

We run an Advanced Research Training Scheme consisting of a range of Techniques Workshops where small groups of students are introduced to state-of-the-art technology by the Senior Research Associates responsible for items of shared equipment on campus such as FACS, MALDI-TOF MS, Calcium imaging etc. 

Transferable Skills

In addition to the wide range of scientific skills the students are exposed to, Babraham offers a unique environment for developing other life skills; such as communication skills by explaining their science to lay audiences, building relationships as well as developing their creative skills through the design and implementation of our science outreach activities.

Credit system

The Institute’s Graduate Committee, which includes student representatives, oversees a training credit system to ensure that every student accumulates the level of transferable skills training required by the Research Councils.
Additional complementary training courses are available to our students through the University Graduate School of Life Sciences. The University of Cambridge Careers Service actively encourages postgraduate students to use their excellent facilities that include careers advice and courses on writing CVs and interview techniques. To complement this the Institute organizes seminars on specific careers e.g. Patent Lawyers, Setting up Spin Off companies etc.