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Researcher Development Program (2014-2019)

Please note:

The Researcher Development Program has concluded with the end of the 2019 summer term.

Workshops for postdoctoral researchers can now be found within the general DRS course program.

The Researcher Development Program (RDP) provides postdoctoral researchers with the best possible support in a challenging phase of their lives and careers. RDP courses are tailored to the needs of postdoctoral researchers on their path to a professorship. The program is continually evaluated and optimized and focuses on skills with practical relevance for professional life. All RDP trainers and coaches are intimately familiar with the academic environment and have high methodological competence.

Program and Booking

To view the current program and book a course, head over to our course booking website. Please note that you need to have (or create) an account before you can make a booking.

Target Group

The Researcher Development Program is a qualification program for junior researchers with a doctoral degree who aspire to attain the position of full professor, who already have an academic position, a project, or a scholarship, and who have already taken an initial step toward launching a career in academics. This includes:

  • postdocs
  • junior professors
  • junior research groups leaders
Please note our Conditions for Participation.

Program Objectives

The objectives of the qualification program are:

1. Strategic career development

  • Orientation: What are my personal career goals and what are the external circumstances?
  • Career planning: What are my next steps?
  • Qualification for appointment as a professor: What does it mean and how can I attain it?

2. Professionalisation

  • current and future tasks
  • freeing up time for research activities

3. Networking

  • with other postdoctoral scholars of Freie Universität at various career stages

Qualification Areas

There are three subject areas highlighting various aspects of academic qualification. These are either important on the path to a professorship or could become relevant for a professorship. Participants can register for training courses and peer coaching sessions in all three areas:

1. Career Management

     - Paths to an academic career
     - Academic career and life planning
     - Developing and enhancing an academic profile
     - Appointment procedures

2. Teaching

     - Theoretical foundations of teaching
     - Methods
     - Planning courses
     - Supervising doctoral candidates

3. Leadership
     - Selecting staff

     - Self-management and managing others
     - Team building
     - Conflict management

Requirements & Eligibility

The regulations and prerequisites for participation are described in our Conditions for Participation.

Certificate Programs

In the areas Teaching and Leadership, we offer certificate programs: the Teaching Core Certificate (TCC) and the Leadership Core Certificate (LCC), which can be completed over a duration of four workshop days. Fore more information, please refer to the respective course descriptions on our booking site.


Julian Henneberg

Program Manager Researcher Development Program

Tel: +4930 83861242


Other institutions

Other institutions offering courses for postdocs:

  • The Berlin Center for Higher Education Instruction (BZHL) offers academic staff a broad-based, systematic way of obtaining skills and qualifications on the topics of teaching and learning. The BZHL is sponsored by all of the state-operated higher education institutions in the state of Berlin. Its joint office is hosted by Technische Universität Berlin.
  • The Continuing Education Center (Weiterbildungszentrum) at Freie Universität Berlin offers professional and continuing education courses, focusing on key qualifications and on developing personal skills. The range of topics offered includes rhetoric and public speaking, academic writing and speaking, giving presentations in English, building an academic profile, professional academic applications, and self-presentation.