Career & Professional Development

Professional Development & Postdoctoral Affairs is here to support doctoral students through successfully navigating their doctoral training and building the necessary skills for any career pathway they choose. Throughout your doctoral experience you are gaining valuable professional skills, outlined in our Core Capacities, that will contribute to your career preparedness.

PhD Progression walks BU PhDs through the processes of the career development and job application, as well as skill building in a variety of areas related to the Core Capacities. PDPA workshops provide opportunities for doctoral students to build and develop their skills relating to their individual career goals. The steps listed below provide content to help you get started on your career journey. You can also earn badges for this work in PhD Progression’s Level 1&2 Career Development Pathways

Planning for any career is an iterative process that includes self-assessment, exploration, skill development, and job applications, with many small steps in between. We have collected a variety of resources to guide you through this process.

  1. Self Assessment: understanding your interests, values, and skills is foundational to the career decision-making process. In this section you will find resources for conducting self-assessments and creating Individual Development Plans.
  2. Career Exploration: exploring your options will give you valuable insight into occupations and fields of interest, as well as skills needed for careers in your desired field. This section has resources for researching potential career pathways in academic and non-academic job fields.
  3. Career Preparation: once you have a sense of your pathway, and are close to finishing your degree, it’s time to prepare for your job search. Here you will find guides for the various stages of a job search process including document preparation (CVs, Resumés, Cover Letters, Teaching & Diversity Statements) and interviewing.

PDPA encourages doctoral students to take advantage of experiential learning opportunities as a valuable means of acquiring new skills and exploring diverse career pathways.

You can find up-to-date information on events, workshops, and other programs on our Twitter (@BU_PhDs) or our Instagram (@BU_PhDs). You can also sign up for our Doctoral Digest newsletter for bi-monthly announcements, upcoming events, and additional resources.