Research Impact Professional Development Courses

Communicating Research in Schools

Tutor: Jennifer Cooke (Outreach)
Course Level: Level 1
Course Credit: 1 credit
Maximum Course Capacity: 10

Learn about and practice communication techniques to help you develop talks and activities for school aged audiences. The course also covers the practical aspects of working in schools. Students who have completed this course can register to become an ‘Outreach Postgraduate Ambassador’ and receive details of opportunities available through the Outreach Office to work with schools.

On completion of this workshop you will be able to:

  • Identify: topics within your research specialism that can excite younger audiences
  • Recognise: the benefits of working with younger audiences.
  • Practice: using appropriate language and activities to engage younger audiences.
  • Develop: understanding of the school environment and your responsibilities when working with schools
  • Apply: your communication skills with schools through the Outreach Office.

Please note that if you have attended training for the Reaching Further programme run by the Outreach Office, you should not attend this course, as the material overlaps.


  • Tuesday 27 April 2021, 13:00-14:30, Microsoft Teams
  • Wednesday 16 June 2021, 10:00-11:30, Microsoft Teams


Evaluating Engagement

Tutors: Dr Amy Seakins & Liz Danner
Course Level: Level 2
Course Credit: 1 credit
Maximum Course Capacity: 15

This lively workshop will help you to assess whether your public engagement activities are successful and reveal the areas that may need fine-tuning. The session will be an opportunity to identify and refine your aims for public engagement activities and understand what success looks like for your project.  Together we will discuss what you might focus on in your evaluation and explore a range of creative and effective methods and approaches to gather feedback. You will discover the value of evaluation, and how evaluation can be enjoyable for you and your public participants.

On completion of this workshop you will be able to:

  • Develop aims and objectives for your current or future engagement activities
  • Understand why, and when, you might conduct evaluation
  • Identify the data you need to know or the evaluation questions that you need to focus on
  • Effectively select appropriate evaluation methods from a broad range of possibilities
  • Recognise the principles for conducting high-quality evaluation, that participants enjoy doing


  • Thursday 24 June 2021, 10:00-12:00, Zoom


Public Involvement in Medical Research

Tutor: Maria Piggin, Sandra Jayacodi & Carmel McGrath
Course Level: Level 2
Course Credit: 1 credit
Maximum Course Capacity: 20

This session will provide a basic  introduction to  public involvement  in research. It will introduce you to the differences between involvement, engagement, and participation and set public involvement in the wider research context. You will learn why public involvement is important, examples of where it can be undertaken in the research cycle and who to involve.   The session will include practical tips about public involvement and provide some examples of high-quality public involvement activities. The session will be co-facilitated with a public contributor. 

On completion of this session you will be able to:

  • Define and describe the differences between “public involvement”, “public engagement” and “public participation”;
  • Explain the reasons why public involvement in medical research is important;
  • Identify three stages of the research cycle where public involvement can be undertaken;
  • List three examples of how/where to find people to involve in your research;

This session is designed for those undertaking research which will impact patients and the public. This is usually medical research but may include other disciplines depending on the research project. If you would like to check whether this session is applicable to you, please feel free to contact us on


  • There are no further sessions taking place this academic year

Public Engagement

Tutor: Dr Helal Ahmed
Course Level: Level 3
Course Credit: 1 credit
Maximum Coures Capacity: 10

Engaging researchers go out of their way to involve the public with their research. They open opportunities for others to get involved, provide new perspectives on the value of their work, and stimulate people to be curious about the world of research.  In this blended learning course you will create content for public engagement for a specific audience with a purpose. During the live webinar session, you will peer assess others’ content and provide constructive feedback.

On completion of this workshop you will be able to:

  • Explain why we need to engage the public with our research
  • Identify your audiences’ expectations and challenges
  • Analyse and identify the most engaging part of your research
  • Design and employ different ways of engaging with the public
  • Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your public engagement activities 


  • Tuesday 27 April 2021, 10:00-11:30, Microsoft Teams
  • Tuesday 01 June 2021, 10:00-11:30, Microsoft Teams


Some Graduate School courses include pre-course activities for you to complete. Please check this page to find out how to self-enrol on the course’s Blackboard programme module, which will enable you to complete these activities.