Online information skills support

E-portfolio Erasmus University Library

Together with PhD candidates of the Graduate School, the Erasmus University Library developed a series of e-modules that help PhD candidates to acquire several skills needed during their research project. These modules are all related to academic information: how to collect, process, manage and (re)use academic output in any form.

Why is it important to have these skills?

Information (data) is the very basis of academic research. The University Library supports researchers in dealing with publications and research data. In 2016, a group of PhD candidates of the Graduate School was asked which skills they see as vital for the success of their research project, but do not possess yet. Consequently a number of topics was selected for which the University Library provides online information and training:

  • Doing your literature review
  • Publication strategies & Open Access (a.o. about predatory publishers and journals)
  • Research Data Management (RDM) plan
  • Measuring academic impact (f.i. H-index, journal level metrics and altmetrics)
  • Enhancing your academic visibility & profile, in databases and on the internet

By providing e-learning, PhD candidates can get the required training whenever they need it. For this reason a portfolio of e-modules has been developed for each of the above topics.

How is the e-portfolio organised and where can I find it?

Modules will become available per topic on a rolling basis. 'How to conduct a literature review' was the logical first topic to be tackled, as it is a requirement in most academic disciplines at the start of a PhD project.

Each topic consists of several modules, covering all elements and sometimes phases of the research cycle. This allows candidates to get training in and information on exactly those topics that are relevant to them. The modules share the following characteristics:

  • Spot-on modules consisting of comprehensive texts with key-information, short videos and sometimes additional documentation such as manuals and hand-outs;
  • If possible an e-exercise is included (to practice what has been learned);
  • Freely available online – no ERNA login is needed, so candidates can already start using the modules before the start of their project;
  • Links to additional online resources (for those who want to know more).

If you are interested in this subject, the following courses and workshops from our doctoral education programme might also be relevant for you.

Suggestions or feedback? Contact us!

Candidates are always welcome to join the Advisory Panel to give feedback on the modules, both those already available as well as those still under construction. Please contact Graduate School manager Jan Nagtzaam to sign-up.

drs. J.C.A. (Jan) Nagtzaam
Mandeville Building, T19-04
T:   +31 (0)10 40 82607

Questions and remarks on the modules can also be send to or by filling out the Training & Support question form.