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Pillar 4: Professional skills

In 2006, the University of Potsdam established an interdisciplinary Graduate School – PoGS – open to all doctoral researchers, lecturers and research fellows. PoGS offers training in professional and soft skills, ranging from presentation techniques to academic writing.

Our doctoral students have to choose up to two courses from the general program of PoGS, depending on individual needs and workload.

The following graph summarizes PoGS’s structure and how it complements faculty-based PhD training:

The Research Training Group encourages all interested students to gain insights and experiences in state-of-the-art teaching techniques and to develop their didactic skills by teaching classes under the PoGS Junior Teaching Professionals Program or by taking classes with the professional training program “Studienqualität Brandenburg (SqB)”. The Junior Teaching Professionals Program encompasses workshops in university-level teaching techniques, mentored and independent teaching experience, coaching, student evaluation, and structured feedback.

Most recently, accompanying the Junior Teaching Professionals program, PoGS has launched an English-language supplementary qualification – International Teaching Professionals – in the area of academic teaching, supported by fellowships for doctoral candidates and post-docs. The target group is the young generation of foreign as well as German academics who want to orient themselves internationally. They are given the opportunity to acquire sound and certified teaching skills thus qualify for teaching assignments. The certificate of completion certifies the participation in a two-level program comprising university didactic training and the implementation of individual teaching accompanied by mentors. Feedback discussions with the mentors and selected students are incorporated to reflect qualification progress.