PLEASE NOTE: The Fall semester will begin on Tuesday, August 25. Information and FAQs are available on the Return to Grounds website and the Fall 2020 Student Resource website, which will be updated frequently.

PhD Plus Competencies

PhD Plus "core modules" provide opportunities for PhD students and Postdocs (collectively called 'trainees') to develop competencies in a variety of areas. Generally, we view these competencies as universally critical to the workforce today and key to individual success regardless of job responsibilities or sectors.  We classify competencies in six broad categories - Leadership & Management, Communication, Collaboration, Analytical thinking, Personal Development, and Cultural Competency. Each broad category of competency serves as a hub for range of transferable skills.

PhD Plus core modules, as well as individual training activities (events) are associated with one or more of six competency labels. Trainees can click on individual competency label (e.g. Leadership & Management) to learn about the gamut of topics across different core modules that afford development of the specific competency. This will enable trainees to participate in PhD Plus programs strategically. 

Click on each of these competencies, you will be able to browse a list of workshops, events, and opportunities across all modules.

Leadership & Management

  • Time management 
  • Project management 
  • Professionalism 
  • Integrity 
  • Flexibility 
  • Agency 
  • Concerns for others/Empathy
  • Mentoring


  • Audience 
  • Oral proficiency
  • Written proficiency
  • Conflict management
  • Professional
  • Active listening
  • Social media
  • Data storytelling 


  • Team management
  • Networking and contribution

Analytical Thinking

  • Qualitative reasoning 
  • Quantitative reasoning
  • Audience analysis

personal development 

  • Wellness 
  • Resilience
  • Initiative
  • Achievement/Effort 
  • Independence
  • Integrity
  • Adaptability/Flexibility
  • Persistence

 Cultural competence 

  • Global/International experience
  • Interdisciplinarity and awareness of disciplinary cultures
  • Diversity and Inclusion