Responsibilities of the student

An overview of PGR students' responsibilities towards supervision and their studies.



  • Every student must ensure that their contact details and addresses are kept up-to-date.
  • All students must maintain appropriate standards of behaviour when dealing with others, including fellow students, members of staff and the public.


  • The student must ensure that they have read, understood and comply with the University's policies, procedures and regulations, which are set out in the Code of Practice for Research Degree Programmes and the University's Regulations.
  • In the early stages of the research the student should discuss with the supervisor the type of guidance believed to be most helpful and the training which may be required, to clarify both the needs and aims of the research. The student should work with the supervisor to identify and select strategies to meet these needs and aims. This will require undertaking a Training Needs Analysis.
  • The student should work with the supervisor to establish an effective supervisory relationship, tackling the research with a positive commitment, and taking full advantage of the resources and facilities offered by the academic environment.
  • The student should reach an agreement with the supervisor on the record keeping of supervisory meetings. Both the student and supervisor should keep copies of the written or electronic record.
  • The student should discuss any financial arrangements in connection with their work with their supervisor and ensure that these are carried out in accordance with the University's Financial Directives.
  • The student should check their university email account on a regular basis, so as not to miss important messages.


  • The student should agree with the supervisor to have regular meetings, which should take place at least every four to six weeks, and to attend supervisory sessions in accordance with the agreed schedule.
  • The student should work with the supervisor to establish and maintain a satisfactory timetable for the research, leading to Confirmation Review and submission of the final thesis within the student's tuition fee-paying period, or as soon as possible thereafter. The student should, by the end of the first year (or second year for part-time students) have defined the area of research, become acquainted with the background knowledge required and the relevant literature, and have established a provisional timetable for conducting the research and writing the thesis. Confirmation Review should have taken place and students should also have made satisfactory progress in the Doctoral Development Programme.
  • The student should submit written work to the supervisor regularly and in good time, in accordance with the agreed timetable. This work should be word processed, not handwritten.
  • The student should take note of any guidance and feedback offered by the supervisor.
  • The student should discuss any problems, e.g. access to data, information, facilities, equipment or supervisory relationship with the supervisor at the time they occur.  The early identification and resolution of problems can prevent difficulties later. If the student feels unable to raise the problem with the supervisor, then their Personal Tutor, Head of Department or PGR Lead should be consulted. If for any reason this is not felt to be possible, the student should contact Research, Partnerships and Innovation or the Advice Centre in the Students' Union for guidance.
  • The student must submit a Data Management Plan, which will be reviewed at Confirmation Review and should be maintained and updated over the course of the student’s research.
  • The student must attend regularly and must agree in advance with the supervisor any periods of absence from the University and seek appropriate permission.

Academic progress

  • The student should keep written records of their work, which may form the basis of progress reports required by the supervisor, department, faculty or funding body.
  • The student should raise with the supervisor any concerns which they may have about the progress being made and request additional support if necessary.

The final stages

  • Wherever possible, the student should ensure that all active/core research is completed within their tuition fee-paying period, and should aim to submit by that deadline. Where this is not possible, the student should solely be completing the preparation and writing of their thesis.
  • The student should familiarise themselves with the procedures for the submission and examination of their thesis.
  • Prior to submission the student should provide the supervisor with the opportunity to see a draft of the complete thesis. Supervisors have many commitments on their time, so it is essential that the student takes into account their supervisor's schedule and workload and allows their supervisor sufficient time to be able to read and provide comments on the thesis and for any amendments to be made prior to the submission deadline.  This requires advance planning and should not be left until the last minute.
  • The decision to submit rests with the student, and whilst the student should take due account of their supervisor's opinion, at this stage it is advisory only.