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This section outlines the University’s expectations for the induction of research degree students at School and institutional level.


123. All new research students should be able to start their studies with an understanding of the academic environment in which they will be working.

124. The University Graduate College provides a general induction programme (‘Starting Out’). It is offered on multiple occasions at the beginning of the academic year, and further sessions coincide with the entry points of January, April and July.

125. ‘Starting Out’ introduces students to relevant University regulations and procedures, to the training and development opportunities available through the University Graduate College, and to the effective planning of skills training in order to support progress on the research project and wider professional development. The induction programme also includes discussion of students’ responsibilities and reasonable expectations, as well as those of the supervisor, and it signposts University-wide services and information, including the Student Charter.

126. Each School is required to provide a complementary induction programme at the beginning of the academic year. Topics for School induction programmes typically include:

.1 the formal introduction of students to key School staff, including the Director of Postgraduate Research Studies;

.2 an introduction to the School’s portfolio of research activities, infrastructure and facilities;

.3 relevant health and safety requirements;

.4 information on supervision and the monitoring of academic progress;

.5 the School’s arrangements for communication and feedback with students;

.6 the School’s policy for researcher development and skills training, and opportunities provided locally, including research seminar series and support for conferences.

127. Unless there is a particular and valid reason, all students are expected to make arrangements to attend their School in person at the commencement of their studies, regardless of their mode of study.

128. Supervisors are also expected to be available to meet with their students at the commencement of studies, and Schools may choose to build first supervision meetings into welcome and induction schedules. In all cases, each student must be provided with an early opportunity to meet their supervisor, in person or on-line if necessary, to discuss their research goals and planning.

129. Those students who are unable to attend the School’s induction programme in person should be issued with written guidance – e.g. those students whose start dates do not coincide with the running of the programme, or, exceptionally, those studying part-time or at a distance from the campus.

130. All new research students should be issued with written information appropriate to the School. This may be in the form of a hard-copy handbook or electronic format.

131. Students who belong to a consortium-based Doctoral Training Partnership may be required to attend additional induction. Their School should ensure that these students have been issued with clear written information about the aims and requirements of their training programme in addition to the standard School-based information.