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Training and development

The Institute of Cancer Research, London, offers a broad range of transferable skills training and provides all research students with tailored personal development opportunities (PDF, 233KB) throughout the year. Workshops cover a range of topics including statistics, scientific writing, obtaining research funding and project management. This training is recorded online, via individual student personal development plans.

An ICR scientist working at a computer

The Learning and Development Team hosts many of these courses (PDF, 3.5MB). The team is comprised of former postdocs who work with Registry, the Academic Dean’s team and the Student Association to tailor training to meet students' needs. Where appropriate, events are run in collaboration with partner institutions such as Imperial College London, while ICR Faculty also deliver training for students, for example on the research integrity course.

As well as offering transferable skills training, the Learning and Development team also works with the Postdoc Association and the Scientific Officer Association to provide a series of introductory technical seminars at lunchtimes to train and support students and staff in the use of core scientific techniques.

These are normally delivered once every two years by ICR scientists who are experts in the field, and include topics such as structural biology techniques, chemistry for non-chemists, bioassays in drug development, 3D tissue culture and CRISPR.

The team also works with ICR experts to support informatics and scientific computing, with courses including an Introduction to Bioinformatics, High Performance Computing and Linux, Python, programming and statistics.

They also collaborate with the Scientific Computing User Forum, which meets on a regular basis to share expertise and advice. Places are also made available on regional ‘software carpentry’ boot-camps providing basic skills in scientific computing.

Research students at the ICR are also provided with two key e-learning resources to aid in developing the knowledge and skills that are necessary to excel in cancer science research:

  • Perspectives in Oncology is a modular e-learning website providing a basic grounding in several aspects of cancer science.
  • Skills is a blog-style resource giving advice on transferable skills useful for research at the ICR and beyond.
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