Departmental induction arrangements for PGR students commonly involve some or all of the following:
- A meeting with, or presentation by, key staff in the department (e.g. PGR Lead and other relevant staff members such as key administrative staff)
- An initial meeting with supervisors
- A tour of the departmental facilities
- Provision of a PGR handbook and the University's Code of Practice for Research Degrees
- Presentations on issues such as health and safety
- A meeting with PGR student representatives and/or a buddy/mentor
- A welcome social event (often involving staff and existing PGRs)
Departments, rather than individual supervisors, should be responsible for the induction of new postgraduate research students, in order to ensure consistency (e.g. the PGR Lead, Departmental Manager, or other appropriate member of staff with a key PGR role should be involved in the induction of all students). All new postgraduate research students should be provided with a departmental handbook or equivalent at induction and a copy of the Code Of Practice for Research Degree Programmes.
All new PGR students should also be made aware of the structure of the department and introduced to key members of staff (e.g. Head of Department, PGR Lead, postgraduate administrators, etc), as part of their induction programme.
- It is desirable for existing PGR students to be involved in the induction of new PGR students (e.g. through a 'buddy' system or an open question and answer session).
- An induction session specifically dealing with cultural issues for international students could be particularly helpful, especially if such sessions involved existing international PGR students rather than academic staff.
- It is helpful for new PGR students to be provided with an ‘induction checklist’ on which different aspects of the induction could be signed off when complete (the three month review meeting for the Doctoral Development Programme (DDP) could be used as an appropriate opportunity to check that all requirements have been met). This could be particularly useful for cross-sessional students, whose induction may not be as structured as those starting in September/October.
Links to Faculty-specific induction programmes are available below: