Postdoctoral Research Assistant role profile (grade 7)


  • Communicates regularly with colleagues in peer communities within and outside the University on research topics.
  • Communicates with research team on current and future research activity requirements.
  • Collects information from participants during research activity.
  • Communicates with academic and administrative colleagues within the University and externally on matters related to the research processes.
  • Contributes as part of the research team to the design and implementation of research methodologies including for example the writing of questionnaires.
  • Keeps accurate records, prepares reports and/or publications as appropriate and make presentations at a variety of meetings both in the University and externally.
  • Collaboratively writes proposals for research grant submissions, publications and conference papers to disseminate research findings.

Teamwork, motivation and managing people

  • Contributes collaboratively to research projects as part of the research team.
  • Develops productive and effective working relationships with academic, administrative and research colleagues stakeholders and partners.
  • Contributes collaboratively to projects at School, department or subject area level.
  • Coaches and mentors post graduate/PHD students.

Liaison and networking

  • Liaises as appropriate to facilitate research and funding opportunities for example with external partners, stakeholders and colleagues.

Planning and organising resources

  • Plans own workload within parameters of overall research activity plan.
  • Often required to work independently on research projects without daily supervision.
  • Often required to plan physical resources months ahead e.g. cell growth predictability, consumables for experiments.

Teaching and learning support

  • Is required to undertake one-off specialist lectures, some formal teaching as part of the curriculum, and/or demonstrations as appropriate.

Research and analysis

Working independently is required to:

  • Design and test appropriate research tools e.g. questionnaires.
  • Gathers data from multiple sources as part of research activity.
  • Makes significant contribution to analysis and evaluation using a range of analytical tools for example descriptive statistics, reliability and factor analysis.
  • To keep accurate laboratory records, assist in the preparation of reports and/or publications as appropriate and make presentations at a variety of meetings both in the University and externally
  • Conduct literature searches as appropriate.
  • Makes significant contribution to writing up and disseminating research findings via networks and appropriate publications.

Pastoral care

  • Shows general sensitivity when dealing with confidential and data protection issues.
  • Likely to have mentoring/coaching responsibility for PhD students.

Initiative, problem-solving and decision making

  • Contributes to the day to day operational decisions on a collaborative basis with others in the research team.
  • Uses specialist knowledge of research area to devise solutions to unpredictable and unexpected research outcomes.

Sensory, physical and emotional demands

  • Uses a range of equipment as appropriate to research activity i.e. anything from laboratory equipment to pcs, to medical equipment.

Work environment

  • Based in office, teaching rooms, laboratory or in the field.
  • Could be required to wear specialist clothing.
  • Could be required to undertake risk assessment.

Knowledge and experience

  • Postgraduate or Post Doctoral qualifications or studying for PhD.
  • Possess sufficient depth of knowledge in research area to be able to work independently and as part of research team.

In addition to the above expectations

In addition to the above expectations, to be appointed on Grade 8 salary, it is essential that PDRAs should be able to demonstrate all of the following as requirements of their role:

  • Accountability for coaching/mentoring of PhD students.
  • Assisting as named author in publication of research, where the quality could be RAE returnable.
  • Formal responsibility to teach as part of the curriculum.