The College recognises and fully supports the fundamental role research plays in working towards high quality evidence based care and while academic and research-active members will likely have access to highly structured mechanisms to support and safeguard ethical conduct in research, not all members are able to access such support. Nevertheless, all practitioners are actively encouraged by the both college and the HCPC 1,2 (Standard 14.16-14.20) to contribute to the development of the profession of podiatry, for example through engagement with low-risk (especially non-research) evaluations of practice, and submission of audits and case histories for publication.
Becoming an early career researcher has its challenges and so obtaining support from experienced colleagues and organisations will go a long way to getting you started.
The Council for Allied Health Professions Research (CAHPR) was created in 2014 and has made it it's mission to develop AHP research, strengthen evidence of the professions’ value and impact for enhancing service user and community care, and enable the professions to speak with one voice on research issues, thereby raising their profile and increasing their influence. CAHPR has established research hubs around the UK that can offer support and advice and so visit their site for more information.
Different types of postgraduate research experience and training can be obtained by completing an internship or by studying towards a postgraduate certificate/diploma, a masters degree or a doctoral degree e.g. a PhD.
As a helpful start, the Researcher Development Framework (RDF) is a professional development framework for researchers in higher education. It articulates the knowledge, behaviours and attributes of successful researchers, helping them to realise their potential. Also, Health Education England has developed a clinical academic framework for AHPs, nurses and midwives who wish to combine career in clinical practice and research.
FutureLearn partners with top international universities and specialist organisations to offer a wide range of online courses and degrees. Here are just some of the courses that they offer to support research:
- Research Methods / https://www.futurelearn.com/microcredentials/research-methods
- Introduction to Research Ethics / https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/research-ethics-an-introduction
- How to write a PhD research proposal / https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/how-to-write-a-phd-proposal
- Discovering Your PhD Potential: Writing a Research Proposal / https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/research-question