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Research Capacity Development

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Research Capacity Development (RCD)

In 2013 the existing research training interventions for postgraduate students were expanded to include research development opportunities for academic staff engaged in postgraduate supervision and research. This enlarged portfolio, effectively became, a department within the PGC, Research Capacity Development.

The aim of Research Capacity Development is to increase research productivity, improve postgraduate retention and throughput, and strengthen postgraduate supervision.

Research Capacity Development Focus Areas

Research Capacity Development activities and events are aimed primarily at postgraduate students and staff members who could be classified as 'emerging' researchers and supervisors. For more detail please see the information below:

Intervention Purpose
Master's proposal writing workshops/boot campStudents are provided with a solid foundation from which to write a Master's proposal through workshops or boot camps which focus on refining their research questions, arguments, research design, and methodology.
PhD workshop seriesIn 2016 RCD organised a series of workshops for UJ staff studying towards their PhD.
Postgraduate Supervision Forum (PGSF)Participants at the bi annual PGSF discuss key challenges faced by supervisors, and supervision processes and practices.
Postgraduate SymposiumThe annual interfaculty Postgraduate Symposium offers UJ postgraduate students an opportunity to present their research in the form of a paper or a poster.
Qualitative research design and methodology workshopsThese workshops cover various aspects of qualitative research related to defining the research question, choosing the relevant research design and methods, and deciding how to analyse the data and present the results.
Qualitative data analysis workshops/short coursesThese workshops deepen participants understanding of common qualitative data analysis techniques, such as thematic analysis. Workshops on ATLAS.ti (a software package that assists researchers with coding and categorising data) are also offered.
Quantitative methodology and data collection workshops

These workshops cover aspects of methodology, such as sampling, and questionnaire design. Workshops on analysing fata using the computer based Statistical Programme for the Social Sciences (SPSS) for data analysis are also offered.


Research grant application workshopsExperts offer workshops to assist researchers to complete successful grant/funding proposals.
Short courses and  workshops for supervisorsThe Strengthening Postgraduate Supervision course provides a space for the sharing of knowledge about supervision processes and practices. Additional workshops and courses for supervisors on research ethics, assessment of postgraduate research, academic literacies, and qualitative and quantitative research design and methodology for supervisors will be offered in future.
UJ Three Minute Thesis Competition (UJ 3MT)The UJ Three Minute Thesis Competition was held for the first time in 2015 and will be held again in 2016. This competition provides PhD candidates with the opportunity to present their thesis in three minutes to an intelligent lay audience.
UJ-SANTRUST PhD Proposal Development Programme

In total 87 staff members have completed the SANTRUST PhD Proposal Development Programme. This programme had the following aims:

  • To ensure PhD proposals are developed  in one year, leading to an increased PhD completion rate;
  • To deepen insight into concepts, research designs, and methods in research; and
  • To strengthen the relationship between candidates and their respective supervisors. 
Workshops offered in collaboration with the UJ library

Research Capacity Development collaborates with the UJ Library to provide workshops on databases, referencing and refworks, e-books, and social media for researchers. In collaboration with service providers workshops are offered on 'tools', such as Scival and Elsevier, which track researcher and institutional performance.


Writing workshopsWorkshops are organised that focus on specific aspects of writing or specific sections of the thesis.
Writing for publication retreatsWriting retreats allow researchers a quiet space to work on research articles in collaboration with expert facilitators.


Contact us 

Name RoleTelephone Email
Dr Pia LambertiHead: Research Capacity Development011 559
Megan EngelbrechtAdministrative Assistant011 559