Promoting mental health and wellbeing in doctoral researchers through co-designed inductions: Initial insights into implementation

Jackman, Patricia, Jacobs, Lisa, Sanderson, Rebecca , Blackwell, Lauren and Pousada Solino, Pilar (2022) Promoting mental health and wellbeing in doctoral researchers through co-designed inductions: Initial insights into implementation. In: 5th International Conference on Developments in Doctoral Education & Training.

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Promoting mental health and wellbeing in doctoral researchers through co-designed inductions: Initial insights into implementation
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Abstract

In recent years, there is increasing concern in the higher education sector for doctoral researchers’ mental health and wellbeing. In response to calls for the development of prevention strategies to address this issue, this talk will present actionable strategies that could be implemented into induction programmes to support doctoral researcher mental health and wellbeing, and thus promote positive research cultures. Initially, we will outline the method and present findings from a co-design study that generated evidence to inform the design of inductions to support mental health and wellbeing in doctoral researchers (Jackman et al., 2021). Recognising the value of working in partnership with end-users and stakeholders in the design of health-promoting interventions, our findings were generated through a 9-month collaboration with 47 doctoral researchers from 24 institutions and 13 stakeholders from one university, with data collected via focus groups and follow-up surveys. After conducting thematic analysis and making further refinements based on feedback from participants, the recommended strategies were organised into five themes: peer connections; supervisor relationships; information and resources; student services advice and support; and training and development. After presenting the study findings, we will explain how actionable strategies within the five principles recommended in our research have been implemented and present initial insights into the impact of these strategies for doctoral researchers. Furthermore, given the emphasis placed on positioning equality, diversity, and inclusion at the heart of inductions for doctoral researchers in our research, we will discuss strategies employed to support often isolated communities within the doctoral researcher population, including the provision of accessible online training and blended approaches to career development opportunities to support peer connections. Our talk will conclude by providing considerations for the design of inductions and strategies to support the mental health and wellbeing of doctoral researchers from the outset of their studies.

Keywords:doctoral education, mental health
Subjects:X Education > X990 Education not elsewhere classified
C Biological Sciences > C841 Health Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C812 Educational Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Sport and Exercise Science
ID Code:48927
Deposited On:26 Apr 2022 14:45

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