Useful Resources

Mentors

Mentorship

A central feature is the Mentorship scheme based on the toolkit generated by the Academy of Medical Sciences as a guide and focused on the OSCAR model. The mentorship scheme within the School provides the platform for reflexive discussion between individual ECRs as mentees and mentors to shape and guide their career trajectory. The principles of the School’s mentoring scheme are:

  •  It provides a ‘formal mentoring’ mechanism which augments ‘informal mentoring’, which focuses on advice or support provided by colleagues, supervisors on an ad-hoc basis. It also is supplementary to ‘spot mentoring’, which are one-off conversations with senior academic staff.
  •  Formal mentoring involves a degree of structure with a focus on developmental action planning and reflection.
  • The formal mentoring scheme is part of a Doctoral and Post-doctoral pathway with an open gateway for staff and PGR students nearing completion to access the scheme. 
  • Formal mentoring centres on support, reflection, encouragement, signposting, challenging and providing a framework for future action planning.
  • Formal mentoring does not centre on collaborative applications on research projects, joint grant funding or promotion matters.
  • The formal mentoring scheme is optional not compulsory.

The toolkit by the Academy of Medical Sciences is used as part of the formal mentoring scheme and consists of the following:

  • A contract that sets the scene and establishes an agreement for the mentoring relationship, although the precise nature of the mentoring relationships would be agreed between the mentor and mentee.
  • The OSCAR model is a five-stage framework for questions that can frame a mentoring session and provide the basis for following up on actions at subsequent sessions.
  • A guide on questions and discussion within mentoring meetings with an emphasis on effective mentorship using open, probing, reflective, clarifying or comparative questions.
  • A guide on the range of styles of intervention to be utilised within mentoring.
  • A guide on conducting long-distance mentoring where appropriate.

Engagement with mentorship is voluntary and a mentee can select from a list of possible mentors. All requests will be directed through the Director of Postgraduate Research. The process of matching and organising mentees and mentors are as follows:

  •  Matching of mentor-mentee will be focused within the School but ideally not within their own particular centre or close working group, to ensure an appropriate mentor-mentee relationship.
  • An initial introductory meeting between the mentor and mentee will discuss expectations, the mentorship model and the mentorship contract (please see ‘Useful resources’ tab). The first mentorship meeting will follow within two months and then on a regular basis as agreed in the initial introductory meeting. As a guide, it is anticipated these meetings will take place approximately three monthly. 

  • There is a ‘no-blame’ principle if mentees and mentors are unable to continue with their relationship and alternative mentors are allocated.

Mentorship pathways

PGR students should initially discuss their mentorship needs with their supervisory team.

Early career research staff (who are not enrolled as a PGR student), should complete the mentorship expression of interest form and return to the Director of Postgraduate Research, Sion Williams