Take Charge of Your Career as a PhD or Postdoctoral Researcher in the Humanities

2-day online workshop with Dr. Kerstin Fritsches on how to succeed in developing your preferred career within or beyond academia.

Woman holding a presentation for a group of students

Photo: Kerstin Fritsches

Research careers are sought-after and increasingly competitive. It has never been more important for PhD candidates and postdocs to be strategic about career moves, develop effective networks and master the right skills to get into their careers of choice.

This workshop is for you if you want to be proactive about your job prospects, looking for practical ways to structure your progress and succeed in your preferred career - in academia or beyond.

The virtual workshop is held via Zoom over 2 half days and delivers:

  • tools to help you develop a career plan tailored to your strengths and preferences;
  • a personal roadmap for the career path that will work best for you;
  • analysis of your current network of contacts and how to expand it to benefit your career;
  • practical advice on marketing yourself and your skills;
  • strategies for developing transferrable skills suited to a career in, or outside, academia.

Participation and registration

This 2-day online workshop is for (1) all PhD fellows and postdocs in the Department of Literature, Area Studies, and European Languages (ILOS), and (2) PhD fellows from affiliated departments in the Faculty of Humanities. 

Please sign up here by the end of 27 October

In case your program ended in 2019, you can still apply to attend by sending an email to: tina.skouen@ilos.uio.no.

A short questionnare will be distributed to registered participants two weeks before the workshop. 


Facilitator: Dr Kerstin Fritsches, PostdocTraining


Day 1: 11 November - ‘Why and how to plan your career’

from 8:45

Zoom room opens, please connect a few minutes early for a 9:00 am start

9:00 - 9:30

Introduction and overview of the day

Context: the employment market for researchers and what it means for you


Session 1 - Aim: Know your strengths, know your options

  • Preface: taking charge of your career 
  • Exercise Theme A: Capabilities and preferences
  • Exercises Theme B: Exploring your choices

11:00 -11:15

Morning e-tea / coffee

11:15 - 12:30

Session 2 - Aim: Create your career plan

  • Preface: the art of ‘bringing the future into the present’
  • Exercises Theme C: Mapping your career

12:30 - 1:00

Post-workshop Q&A as required


Day 2: 12 November - ‘How to implement your plans’

from 8:45

Zoom room opens, please connect a few minutes early for a 9:00 am start

9:00 - 10:45

Session 3 - Aim: Build your networks, develop your profile

  • Exercises Theme D: Define and strengthen your networks
  • Presentation: how to market yourself and create linkages that get you ahead

10:45 - 11:00

Morning e-tea / coffee

11:00 - 12:10

Session 4 - Aim: Develop and sell the skills that win you jobs

  • Preface: Skills and track record requirements for positions in academia, government and industry
  • Exercises Theme E: How to capitalise on transferrable skills

12:10- 12:30

Mastermind exercise and closing

12:30 - 1:00

Post-workshop Q&A as required


Please note there will be additional 5-minute breaks at regular intervals throughout both mornings.


Feedback from previous workshops:

Fantastic and very useful course! The course gave me many ideas, tips, open my mind to new / unknown directions / approaches and showed me how to plan my career.


I expected to get the background info, which was good and informative – but what I found extra helpful were the exercises where you had to apply the new info and how it applied to yourself. Then discussing it was very helpful. [...] I will use the points I have ‘discovered’ about myself from today and include it for my next fellowship application.


I learned a lot and changed my outlook on my career. Kerstin was extremely professional, showed expert knowledge, covered lots of areas and always kept to time. Great balance of slides, own work and group work


About the presenter: Dr. Kerstin Fritsches

Kerstin is a former research fellow who spent the majority of her 12-year research career on grant funding, with first-hand experience of the challenges facing early career researchers and a strong track record in postdoc affairs and career development.Image of a woman smiling: Kerstin Fritches

A lack of effective career training for PhDs led Kerstin to found PostdocTraining in 2011, to bridge a gap in professional development by delivering support tailored specifically for PhD candidates and postdocs. PostdocTraining delivers career development support and mentoring for researchers worldwide and Kerstin has become a sought-after workshop facilitator on topics such as career planning and research leadership both in Europe and Australia.


Published May 28, 2019 4:25 PM - Last modified Aug. 24, 2020 9:00 AM