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Mentoring to Empower Researchers

Mentoring to Empower Researchers

  • Sam Hopkins - University of Surrey
  • Susan A. Brooks - Director of Researcher Development, Oxford Brookes University
  • Alison Yeung - Dr Alison Yeung, Independent Writing Consultant, Purely Academic Ltd.
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December 2019 | 240 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Mentorship can be a rewarding experience for both the mentor and the mentee. Within this context, this book provides guidance on how to set up mentorship programmes in your institutions, and the skills of an effective mentor, including: 

• Mentorship for transition points, 
• Skills development needed for publication, funding application and networking, 
• Mentorship for performing supervision duties. 

This is a practical and easy-to-use guide that draws on the editors’ extensive experience, and an invaluable tool for practitioners, career advisors and academics working in research and skills development. 

Chapter 1 Introduction
Chapter 2 Mentoring for those entering doctoral education
Chapter 3 Mentoring for early career researchers
Chapter 4 Mentoring for academic progression and promotion
Chapter 5 Mentoring to promote cultural awareness
Chapter 6 Mentoring for the transition out of academia
Chapter 7 Mentoring to Support Publication
Chapter 8 Mentoring to support grant success
Chapter 9 Mentoring to support networking
Chapter 10 Mentoring to support development of spoken communication skills
Chapter 11 Incorporating good mentoring principles into doctoral supervision
Chapter 12 Incorporating good mentoring principles as a Principal Investigator
Chapter 13 Reverse Mentoring

This is a genuinely helpful, approachable and timely contribution to the field of mentoring, which is rightly gaining recognition for its benefits to Higher Education in the UK and internationally.  The book is oriented towards practical usage by individuals who are looking to develop and hone key aspects of their skills for a variety of professional reasons (at all stages of their academic careers) and also Higher Education Institutions, not least in respect of the provisions that are made for staff (and doctoral researcher) development and training. While the book can usefully and enjoyably be read from cover-to-cover, it also has the added benefit of being structured in a way that lends itself to use as a ready reference tool, when looking for guidance and advice on any one of a broad range of topics associated with mentoring that it addresses.  The book covers topics that will intuitively be familiar to readers who are interested in matters relating to mentoring but then extends this into less familiar territory and thereby challenges its readers to think broadly and flexibly about the range and scope of uses to which a mentoring-based approach can be put, such as in the case of Mentoring to Support Cultural Adaptation, and also Reverse Mentoring.  

Michael Rayner
University of the Highlands and Islands

This book is an essential aid for anyone interested in how researchers can be supported too develop through mentoring. It not only tells us, it shows us, how mentoring can be applied as a range of programmes and practices to enable researchers to build their awareness and confidence, and to move towards the career outcomes they choose for themselves. The book is centred on a deep understanding of research learning and research cultures, and offers very practical ways for Researcher Development professionals to leverage and strengthen supportive relationships for early career colleagues.

Kay Guccione
Glasgow Caledonian University

This is the definitive playbook for researcher mentees, mentors, and those who support their development. If you are considering or embarking on a mentoring relationship in the research environment (and beyond the hallowed halls of the academy), then you will gain considerably from the guidance and advice that this book has to offer. 


The authors have succeeded in creating a unique resource that is both comprehensive and concise; it sets out general principles and at the same time documents specific applications. This book provides harmonious advice and practical activities to benefit all parties in any permutation of a mentoring relationship in research. 


Sarah Robins-Hobden
Robins-Hobden Consulting

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Sam Hopkins

Sam studied BSc Zoology in the UK and then completed her MSc and PhD in South Africa. Following completion of her doctorate, she held positions as a Tutor and then a Lecturer at the University of the Western Cape. She then continued her post-doctoral research career in biological sciences at the University of Surrey and spent a short time at the Zoological Society of London creating a course for research fellows. Sam then became mentoring lead for the doctoral college at the University of Surrey working within the Researcher Development Programme. Sam is now applying these experiences to her role at Surrey where she works as a teaching... More About Author

Susan A. Brooks

Professor Susan Brooks is Director of Researcher Development at Oxford Brookes University where she develops, oversees and delivers the professional development and skills training programmes for research students and research-active staff at all levels across the University. She began her academic career by completing a doctorate, in pathology, at University College London Medical School in 1990. She continued with post-doctoral cancer research at the same institution until 1995 when she joined Oxford Brookes University, initially as a Senior Lecturer in Cell Biology, and later as Reader. Her interest in researcher development began in... More About Author

Alison Yeung

Dr Alison Yeung is an independent academic writing consultant with substantial experience of designing and delivering writing training to academics both at home and overseas. Prior to working independently, Alison was Writing Skills Teaching Fellow at the University of Surrey for 7 years, where she had responsibility for the design and delivery of writing training for doctoral researchers. Whilst her professional career of over 30 years has been in the teaching of English and the design of teaching materials, her doctoral research was in Systematic Christian Theology and Chinese Philosophy. This deep interest in understanding the... More About Author

Also available as a South Asia Edition.

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