KEELE UNIVERSITY CODE OF PRACTICE ON POSTGRADUATE RESEARCH

KEELE UNIVERSITY CODE OF PRACTICE ON POSTGRADUATE RESEARCH
KEELE UNIVERSITY
CODE OF PRACTICE
ON
POSTGRADUATE RESEARCH
DEGREES
Revisions Approved by Senate 26 June 2013
First Approved by Senate and Effective from 5 March 2008
Minor modifications June 2008, February 2009, March 2010, July 2010, April 2011, October
2011, March 2013
Issued by the University Postgraduate Research Committee www.keele.ac.uk/gradschool
Version
number:
Approval
4.4 Date:
26/06/13
Owner:
Planning and Academic Review
Date:
Administration
1
Contents
SECTION 1: Roles & Responsibilities ................................................................................... 4
1.1 The University .......................................................................................................... 4
1.2 University Oversight of Postgraduate Research Matters .......................................... 5
1.3 University Support Services ..................................................................................... 5
1.4 Research Institutes (RI) ........................................................................................... 6
1.5 Schools .................................................................................................................... 8
1.6 Research students ................................................................................................... 8
1.7 Supervisors and supervisory teams ......................................................................... 9
SECTION 2: Resources & Support .......................................................................................12
2.1 Academic facilities and resources ...........................................................................12
2.2 Research training....................................................................................................12
2.3 Student support services ........................................................................................14
2.4 Bursaries and studentships .....................................................................................15
SECTION 3: Managing & Monitoring Student Admission & Progress ...................................16
3.1 Admission, registration and arrival ..........................................................................16
3.2 Period of registration until submission.....................................................................18
3.3 Requirement to remain in good academic standing ................................................19
3.4 Academic warnings.................................................................................................20
3.5 Regular progress monitoring ...................................................................................21
3.6 Formal doctoral progression procedures .................................................................21
3.7 30 Month review procedures ...................................................................................22
3.8 Progression to continuation mode of attendance ....................................................22
3.9 Withdrawal from research degree study..................................................................23
3.10
The student record .............................................................................................23
SECTION 4: Examinations & Appeals ..................................................................................27
4.1 Submission .............................................................................................................27
4.2 Examination ............................................................................................................28
4.3 Research Degrees Committee and Senate .............................................................29
4.4 Appeals ..................................................................................................................29
4.5 Resubmission .........................................................................................................31
SECTION 5: Quality Assurance............................................................................................33
5.1 Criteria for awards ..................................................................................................33
5.2 Research Institutes and Schools.............................................................................33
5.3 Research Degrees Committee ................................................................................33
SECTION 6: Student Liaison, Feedback & Complaints.........................................................35
6.1 Student liaison and representation ..........................................................................35
6.2 Feedback and evaluation ........................................................................................35
6.3 Complaints..............................................................................................................35
Annex A1: University criteria for making research degree awards at doctoral and masters
level......................................................................................................................................37
Doctoral level ....................................................................................................................37
Masters level ....................................................................................................................39
Annex A2: Recommendations available to examiners of research degrees .........................41
Annex A3: Registration mode of attendance........................................................................44
Full-time ............................................................................................................................44
Part-time ...........................................................................................................................44
2
Continuation .....................................................................................................................44
Leave of absence .............................................................................................................45
Annex B1: Submission for a research degree......................................................................46
Annex B2: Format for research institute Personal Development and Learning Plan ............47
Annex B3: Contents of research institute handbooks for research students ........................48
Annex B4: Doctoral progression procedures .......................................................................49
Annex B5: Required sections for progress monitoring forms ...............................................50
Lead Supervisor’s report on progress ...............................................................................50
Student’s report on progress .............................................................................................50
Annex B6: Approval of supervisors and mentors .................................................................52
Annex B7: Approval of examiners and chair of oral examination .........................................54
Annex B8: Oral examination procedures .............................................................................56
Annex B9: Format for examiners’ reports ............................................................................59
Annex B10: Terms and conditions for appointment of graduate teaching assistantships .....61
Graduate Teaching Assistantships....................................................................................61
Other teaching opportunities .............................................................................................61
Terms & conditions for the appointment of Graduate Teaching Assistantships .................61
Strategic role of GTAs .................................................................................................62
Funding issues ............................................................................................................62
Recruitment .................................................................................................................62
Roles and responsibilities of GTA-holders ................................................................... 63
Training and support for GTA-holders ......................................................................... 64
Annex B11: Ownership and management of intellectual property ........................................65
Annex B12: Standard agreement for the provision of supervision services ..........................66
Annex B13: Guidance on research degrees by published works - PhD ...............................70
Annex B14: Guidance on research degrees by published work - higher doctorates DLitt, LLD
or DSC .................................................................................................................................74
Annex B15: Joint PhD Programmes with External Partners .................................................77
Annex C: Forms for PGR students .......................................................................................79
Annex C1:
Submission of thesis for a research degree...............................................79
Annex C2:
Approval of supervisors and mentors .......................................................79
Annex C3:
Approval of examiners and chair for a research degree ...........................79
Annex C4:
Doctoral progression .................................................................................79
Annex C5:
Pre-submission review .............................................................................79
Annex C6:
Progression to continuation mode of attendance .......................................79
Annex C7:
Application for leave of absence ...............................................................79
Annex C8:
Appeals from research degree students ....................................................79
Annex C9:
Progression report form (supervisors and students) pro-formas ................79
Annex C10:
Personal Development and Learning pro-forma .......................................79
Annex C11: Resubmission report .................................................................................79
Annex D1: Guidance on avoidance of plagiarism and academic dishonesty........................80
Annex D2: Normal expectations of research institute facilities and resources for research
students ...............................................................................................................................84
Annex D3: Roles and responsibilities of students and supervisors ......................................85
Annex D4: Preparation and presentation of a research thesis .............................................88
Annex D5: Joint Statement of the Research Councils’ Skills Training Requirements ..........100
3
KEELE UNIVERSITY
CODE OF PRACTICE
ON
POSTGRADUATE RESEARCH DEGREES
Guidance to applicants, research students, candidates for research degrees,
academic staff, administrative staff, and examiners
This Code of Practice relates to all students taking supervised research degree programmes
within Keele University, specifically those on PhD, MD, DM and MPhil programmes, and
those in the research stage of professional doctorate programmes such as EdD, DBA, DSW,
DPharm and DMedEth*.
* Last entry into the DMedEth was 2012.
It should be read in conjunction with the University’s Ordinances and Regulations for
research degrees (primarily Ordinances III, IV, V, and XVIII and Regulations 2D and 26, and
Research Institute Handbooks for Research Students, which constitute supplements to the
Code of Practice. Together these documents set out the regulations, support and
procedures for research students.
SECTION 1: Roles & Responsibilities
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
1.1
The University
The University Postgraduate Research Committee
Administrative Directorates
Research Institutes
Schools
Research Students
Supervisors and Supervisory Teams.
The University
The University sets the institutional framework for the management of research degree
programmes, designed to comply with the QAA Quality Code chapter B11: Research
Degrees, HEFCE good practice guidance, and the requirements of good research
governance. The specific areas for which it sets out requirements are:
• The roles and responsibilities of the key parties (university, research
institutes, the Graduate School, research students, supervisors and
supervisory teams)
• The facilities, resources, support and training which should be available to
research students
• The processes and procedures for managing and monitoring student
admission and progress
• Examination and appeal processes and procedures
• Quality assurance processes and procedures
• Mechanisms for obtaining feedback from students and for students to make
complaints.
4
University–level requirements are set out in the University Regulations (“Regulations”)
and in this Code of Practice (“COP”).
1.2
University Oversight of Postgraduate Research Matters
1.2.1
The University Postgraduate Research Committee has the overarching strategic
responsibility for all research degree programmes and students, including policy
development and quality assurance.
1.2.2
In carrying out this role the University Postgraduate Research Committee has
oversight of the following specific areas:
• Generic marketing and recruitment in relation to research degrees (including
production of marketing materials and website), and oversight of targeted
Research Institute marketing and recruitment activities
• Oversight of all studentships and bursaries to support research students, and
management of any university-funded studentship schemes
• Management of the university’s external relations as they affect research
students, and in particular close liaison with research councils
• Identifying issues relating to research degrees and students which need to be
improved and developed, and taking these forward (including recruitment,
curriculum issues, quality assurance, facilities, research training, etc)
• Responsibility for monitoring quality assurance in relation to research degree
programmes and driving up standards as necessary
• Ensuring that Research Institutes are adequately meeting their
responsibilities towards postgraduate research education
• Overseeing the research training programme, including commissioning and
approving research training modules, courses and workshops
• Overseeing supervisor training and the career development of contract
research staff.
1.3
University Support Services
1.3.1 The University Administrative Directorates are the primary administrative departments
which supports postgraduate research students and programmes, and the processes
and procedures regulating them. They are also the principal central source of
information about research student and degree matters, ensuring that information for
all parties is accessible, clear, accurate, comprehensive and up-to-date. This includes
the following:
• Managing the studentship applications process
• Induction and admission processes
• Enrolment and re-registration
• Maintaining student records
• Managing the examination processes
• Managing Research Degrees Committee (RDC) processes
• Managing the award processes
• Liaising with Research Institutes.
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1.4
Research Institutes (RI)
1.4.1
The Research Institute is responsible to students, the Faculty and the University for
student recruitment, for their students’ research degree programmes and for
monitoring and supporting their progress on those programmes, within the
institutional framework. The Research Institute reports formally to the Faculty and will
agree recruitment targets each year with the Dean of the Faculty.
1.4.2
Postgraduate Committees: Each Research Institute has a Postgraduate Committee
through which it exercises its responsibilities for research degree programmes and
students (or such other arrangements as best suit the needs of students and the
organisation of the Research Institute). All such arrangements must be approved by
the Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise.
a) It is expected that this role will normally be carried out by a distinct
Postgraduate Committee (though in some RIs the role may be carried out by
another committee within the RI structure)
b) The Postgraduate Committee should be chaired by a Director of
Postgraduate Research (who reports to the Director of the RI), and should
include RI members who are experienced researchers and supervisors
c) The Postgraduate Committee should meet at least 4 times a year (not virtual
meetings), and should record its arrangements for formal delegation in
respect of those matters (‘chair’s action’) which fall between meetings
d) The creation of sub-committees of the Postgraduate Committee reflecting, for
example, disciplinary interests or other structures within the RI are
permissible provided they report to a RI-wide Postgraduate Committee
e) As a minimum, all decisions of the Postgraduate Committee (including
decisions taken under delegated arrangements between meetings) should be
clearly recorded in the Minutes of the meeting.
1.4.3
Research environment and context: By the start of the academic year each
Postgraduate Committee is required to undertake a review of its work and record its
objectives for postgraduate research education within the Research Institute for the
coming year.
a) This planning and review activity may be undertaken as part of the routine
cycle of meetings of the Postgraduate Committee but should, as a minimum,
be clearly recorded in the Minutes. The Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research
and Enterprise should be invited to comment on the plans of the Research
Institute and may request further details be provided
b) The review and planning process should be one that best suits the needs of
the particular RI but may include the following:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Recruitment strategy for the coming year, including recruitment targets
Plans for securing bursaries during the year to support the recruitment
process and processes for allocating them
Criteria and procedures for managing and monitoring student admission
Allocation of resources to support postgraduate education
The research environment: facilities, resources, support and training available
Arrangements for student supervision
Training needs of supervisors
Development of good supervisory practice
Procedures for managing and monitoring student progress, including for
students required to resubmit
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•
•
•
•
•
Format of the Personal Development and Learning Plans to be used by the
RI (see Annex B for minimum requirements)
Procedures for ensuring compliance with the requirements of appropriate
research governance systems and procedures
Mechanisms for student liaison, feedback and complaints
Communication and liaison arrangements for MRes students linked to the RI
Mechanisms for maintaining oversight of research council funded students.
See also Annex D2 (Normal expectations of Research Institute facilities and
resources for research students).
These arrangements, as a minimum, must comply with the Code of Practice.
1.4.4
Monitoring admission and progress of individual students: In relation to specific
students, the Postgraduate Committee has the responsibility for the following,
keeping the University Administrative Directorates informed as necessary:
• Authorising the admission of each student, including identifying an
appropriate Lead Supervisor and second supervisor and whether the
Research Institute has appropriate and sufficient resources for the specific
project
• Allocating any bursaries or other form of student support available to the
Research Institute
• Supporting applications for studentships
• Approving the initial Personal Development and Learning Plan for each
student no later than 3 months after the student’s start date
• Monitoring and reviewing the progress and training of each student
periodically, including the updated Personal Development and Learning Plan,
and specifically confirming progression in accordance with established criteria
and procedures at different stages of their programme, and alerting the
Research Degrees Committee to any concerns about student progress
• Ensuring that sponsored students meet the conditions of their sponsorship
and in particular ensuring that research council funded students comply with
research council requirements
• Approving administrative matters, such as changes of registration status or
Lead Supervisor, thesis titles
• Administration of 30 month review and report to Research Degrees
Committee
• Administration and approval of transfer to continuation status and report to
Research Degrees Committee for final approval
• After consultation with supervisors and students making recommendations to
Research Degrees Committee about examiners.
1.4.5
Each Research Institute is required to agree with the Faculty Dean their target
submission rate. For details of how this is to be calculated see COP section 3.2. The
effectiveness of Research Institute procedures for monitoring and managing student
progression will be evaluated in part by their success in meeting their agreed
submission rate target.
1.4.6
Each Research Institute shall produce a RI Handbook for Research Students
(approved by the Postgraduate Committee and updated and distributed annually),
which shall include all information which students need to know about the RI’s
research environment, processes and procedures, and expectations of research
degree study. A check list of contents for RI Handbooks is given in Annex B3. RIs
may, of course, add to this, but should not attempt to replicate University-wide
7
guidance, instead referring to the original documents (primarily this Code of Practice
and the Regulations) so that information is consistent and up-to-date.
RI Handbooks form a supplement to this Code of Practice, and should be
authoritative and definitive.
1.4.7
Postgraduate Committees are required to maintain accurate records relating to
student progress, specifically relating to work and training completed, and to the
academic progress of students.
1.4.8
Postgraduate Committees should ensure that their formal procedures are fair, and
made explicit to all students.
1.5
Schools
1.5.1
Research Training may be delivered by various different organisational units, but it is
likely that most in-house training will be delivered by Schools, Research Institutes and
the Learning and Professional Development Centre.
1.5.2
In addition, Schools have the principal responsibility for MRes students (who are
formally postgraduate taught course students) and for delivering all aspects of MRes
programmes. While MRes students are associated mostly with Schools, they may
also be affiliate members of Research Institutes, in preparation for application to a
research degree after completion of the MRes. This is likely to include the
identification of a future Lead Supervisor.
1.6
Research students
1.6.1
Students are expected to familiarise themselves at an early stage with all the relevant
Regulations (particularly Regulation 2D) and the provisions of this Code of Practice.
1.6.2
Students must ensure that they read their Keele email messages in a timely fashion.
Members of the University will communicate with students via the Keele email and it
is the student’s responsibility to respond as appropriate.
1.6.3
The research and the thesis are the work of the student, and the student is expected
to take responsibility for the progress of their work. During the progress of a research
degree, students are expected increasingly to become independent thinkers and
researchers.
1.6.4
Having taken such informed advice as they consider appropriate, students have
responsibility for determining the time of submission of their theses, within the time
limits established by University Regulations (see section 3.2). It is generally
considered best practice for the student and Lead Supervisor jointly to agree that the
thesis is ready for submission.
1.6.5
Students should ensure from the outset that they conduct their research and present
the findings in their thesis in accordance with good research practice. On submitting
the thesis a student will be required to sign a Declaration to confirm this as set out in
Annex B1.
If the research degree is set within a broader programme of work involving a group of
investigators – particularly if this programme of work predates the candidate’s
registration – the candidate should provide an explicit statement (in an
‘Acknowledgments’ section) of the respective roles of the candidate and these other
8
individuals in relevant aspects of the work reported in the thesis. For example, it
should make clear, where relevant, the candidate’s role in designing the study,
developing data collection instruments, collecting primary data, analysing such data,
and formulating conclusions from the analysis. Others involved in these aspects of
the research should be named, and their contributions relative to that of the candidate
should be specified (this would not apply to the ordinary supervision process, only if
the supervisor or supervisory team has had greater-than-usual involvement).
Students should consult the University guidance on avoidance of plagiarism and
academic dishonesty (see Annex D1).
1.6.6
Students are required to develop (with their supervisory team) and keep up-to-date a
Personal Development and Learning Plan. Annex B2 describes the minimum
requirements of a Personal Development and Learning Plan. Each Research
Institute will develop its own format to incorporate these requirements.
1.6.7
Students are expected to have regular contact with supervisors, to discuss a
programme of practical and written work and training, and keep to an agreed
schedule as set out in the Personal Development and Learning Plan. Students
should consider seriously any guidance provided by the supervisory team, and should
address any concerns expressed about their academic progress. Work should be of
an appropriate standard for the degree. Any problems should be raised with the Lead
Supervisor (or another member of the supervisory team) in the first instance.
1.6.8
Students are required to complete and submit Progress Report Forms in accordance
with the timescale required by the Research Institute. Failure to do this may result in
a low progress grade (see COP section 3.5).
1.6.9
Under the terms of Regulation 2D (12) Keele University owns any Intellectual
Property arising from the student's studies for a research degree at the University.
Arrangements for ownership and management of intellectual property rights are set
out in Annex B11.
1.6.10 Additional guidance on the responsibilities of the student is given in Annex D3.
1.7
Supervisors and supervisory teams
1.7.1
All research students shall have one lead supervisor (“the Lead Supervisor”) and
normally at least one other member of a supervisory team. The Lead Supervisor
shall have the primary accountability for the student. The supervisory team shall
include individuals (who may be proposed by the Lead Supervisor, the student or the
Research Institute, and will be approved by the Postgraduate Committee) who
provide specific identified expertise or support for the student to draw on. The roles
of each member of the supervisory team shall be specified in the Personal
Development and Learning Plan.
1.7.2
Subject to provisions set out below in 1.7.5, both the Lead Supervisor (who must be a
full member of the relevant Research Institute) and the second supervisor should
normally be Keele staff (including honorary clinical staff), not from an external body,
and they must have been approved as supervisors by Research Degrees Committee
using the procedures and criteria set out in Annex B6 (Approval of supervisors and
mentors).
Where there is collaboration with another organisation (a university, company or other
organisation) there may be additional members of the supervisory team from that
9
organisation, not subject to the same formal approval procedures. (Where the
student’s primary registration is at another university, the student will be subject to the
regulations and requirements of the university making the award.)
1.7.3
The Lead Supervisor should be selected primarily on the basis of appropriate subject
expertise, and will normally have the necessary skills and experience to monitor,
support and direct research students’ work. Where the most appropriate Lead
Supervisor lacks supervisory experience, the Postgraduate Committee will arrange
for the Lead Supervisor to be allocated a mentor to provide support and guidance,
and the Lead Supervisor will also be offered supervisor training. (Mentoring and
training are requirements of approval as Associate Supervisor – see Annex B6.)
A research student should not be supervised by a member of staff who is currently
studying for a research degree at the same level, except in exceptional
circumstances such as where the member of staff concerned had previously attained
approved supervisor status and has already been supervising the student for some
time.
1.7.4
The second (or other additional) supervisor does not need to have core subject
expertise, but may bring other qualities to the supervisory team (e.g. experience,
complementary expertise, methodological advice, etc). Note, however, that the
second supervisor should not be the Lead Supervisor’s Mentor if there is one, as this
would be a confusion of roles.
When selecting the second supervisor it should be borne in mind that there will be a
need for an internal examiner, and the most appropriate person for that role (normally
next closest in subject expertise) should not normally be selected as the second
supervisor.
The function of the second supervisor is to act as an alternative source of advice for
the student (on all kinds of matters, not just the precise subject), to ensure that a
second person is aware of the student's progress and any issues arising, generally to
open up the supervisory relationship, and to provide for continuity if the Lead
Supervisor leaves for any reason (temporarily or permanently). Therefore it may be
positively beneficial if the second supervisor is not in the precise subject area of the
research project.
1.7.5
In a restricted number of circumstances it may be possible for individuals who are not
employees of the university (or honorary clinical staff) to act as Lead or second
supervisors for research students. In such circumstances the individuals so
appointed will need to have been approved as supervisors using the normal
procedures set out in Annex B6, and will also need to sign an Agreement for the
Provision of Supervision Services, approved by the Director of Planning and
Academic Administration in order to ensure appropriate accountability to the
University. (See Annex B12 for the form of the Agreement.)
Circumstances already identified where this procedure may be appropriate are where a
student’s Lead Supervisor leaves the University. The following conditions should
normally apply:
• no alternative appropriate supervisor with the relevant subject expertise can
be found for the student within the University
• the student is realistically expected to submit his or her thesis within 12
months
10
•
•
the options have been fully discussed with the student, including the
possibility of transferring registration to another institution
the Research Institute appoints a Lead Supervisor who is a member of Keele
staff to take overall responsibility for the student and to ensure that the terms
of the Agreement for the Provision of Supervision Services are met.
In any other circumstances, such arrangements need to be approved by the Research
Degrees Committee.
1.7.6
The Lead Supervisor will ensure that the student has access to the support and
direction necessary for the satisfactory completion of the research degree. This
includes supervisory advice and guidance, Research Institute and university
resources and facilities, and research training. In particular the Lead Supervisor will
ensure that the student is aware of any inadequacy of progress or of standards of
work below that expected (and provide written confirmation of what has been
discussed).
1.7.7
Lead Supervisors are accountable to the Postgraduate Committee, the Research
Degrees Committee and the University (and to any external sponsor) for providing
such reports as are required on the work, training and academic progress of research
students (see COP section 3.5).
1.7.8
Where at all possible, continuity of supervision should be maintained. If Lead
Supervisors are on sabbatical leave, or temporarily absent for other reasons, where
possible they should maintain continuity of supervision, but otherwise clear
arrangements should be made for the period of absence and approved by the
Postgraduate Committee.
1.7.9
Where a change of Lead Supervisor is unavoidable, the circumstances should be
fully discussed with the student, and changes approved by the Postgraduate
Committee.
1.7.10 All supervisors have a responsibility to ensure that they are trained in supervision and
that they continue to develop their supervision skills through continuing professional
development as appropriate.
1.7.11 Additional guidance about the role of the supervisory team is given in Annex D3.
11
SECTION 2: Resources & Support
•
•
•
•
2.1
Academic facilities and resources
Research training
Student support services
Bursaries and studentships.
Academic facilities and resources
As a minimum, Research Institutes shall provide to research students (or ensure that
research students have access to) appropriate and necessary facilities and
resources. The level of access depends on the student’s registration status (full-time,
part-time, continuation, or leave of absence). Normal expectations are set out in
Annex D2. Research Institutes may enhance these levels as appropriate and as
resources allow.
These facilities relate to the status of being a research student, and do not relate to
the requirements for carrying out any particular project. Project resources and
facilities need to be separately identified, and availability and access agreed with
students.
2.1.3
2.2
University academic resources are available to research students primarily through
the Library, and relate to computing and library facilities, including direct and remote
access.
Research training
For further details, please refer to Regulation 2D (4), (6) and (10)
2.2.1
Research training for research students is an integral part of a research degree
programme, as set out in Regulation 2D. Students initially registered prior to August
1st 2013 must take approved Research Training modules to meet the formal minimum
modular credit requirements for research training. Students initially registered on or
after August 1st 2013 must meet the minimum subject-specific training requirements
set by their Research Institute and the institutional requirement to engage with
personal development and employability skills training at a level at least consistent
with Research Council expectations. More detailed information and guidelines on
Research Training are provided in the Research Training Handbook
(http://www.keele.ac.uk/)
2.2.2
Engagement with personal development and employability skills training is required
by the universities’ funding council (HEFCE) and the research councils as well as the
university. Compulsory subject-specific training may be required by your Research
Institute and will be defined in your Research Institute Handbook. The expectation is
that you will evaluate your needs against the Vitae Researcher Development
Statement (RDS) – to be found as Annex D5. This evaluation will form part of your
Personal Development and Learning Plan (PDLP) to be found at Annex C10.
2.2.3
The objectives of the research training programme are to develop skills and
understanding in a number of key areas, some related specifically to research, some
relating to personal development and employability, also referred to as generic skills.
The key areas as set out in the Vitae Researcher Development Statement are:
• Knowledge and intellectual abilities
• Personal effectiveness
•
12
•
•
Research governance and organisation
Engagement, influence and impact
2.2.4
In addition to the appropriate research skills and techniques, all students need to
have acquired, by the end of their programme, the range of skills associated with
personal development and employability set out in the Vitae Researcher
Development Statement. The normal expectation is that all research students will
need to include some ‘generic’ skills modules to achieve this.
2.2.5
The University provides a number of Research Training modules, courses and
workshops designed to help students gain the skills they need to design and
complete their programmes effectively and to help prepare themselves for their
subsequent career. These Research Training opportunities are listed in the Research
Training Handbook each year.
Students initially registered prior to August 1st 2013 must take approved Research
Training modules to meet the formal minimum modular credit requirements for
research training. All approved Research Training modules are available to all
research students. Modules should be selected on the basis of need, as discussed
with the Lead Supervisor and recorded in the Personal Development and Learning
Plan. Any individual module may be seen as developing either transferable and
employability (generic) skills or subject-specific research skills, depending on the
needs of the student and the nature of the research project. Students may take
additional Research Training modules as considered appropriate provided this is
agreed in advance with the Postgraduate Committee in the RI.
2.2.6
2.2.7
The minimum requirements for Research students initially registered prior to August
1st 2013 are as follows:
Doctoral level – PhD, MD
Timing
Before doctoral progression (and a requirement of
doctoral progression)
After doctoral progression and before submission
Total (a requirement of submission)
At least 20 of these credits must relate to research
skills and techniques (RCUK skills category A) and at
least 20 to the broader (generic) skills associated with
personal development and employability (RCUK skills
categories B-G)
Minimum credits
40
20
60
Masters level
Timing
Minimum credits
Total (a requirement of submission)
At least 10 of these credits must relate to research
skills and techniques (RCUK skills category A) and at
20
least 10 to the broader (generic) skills associated with
personal development and employability (RCUK skills
category B-G)
Doctoral Level - DM
1. University-based modular Research Training (as
for PhD)
Timing
Minimum credits
Before doctoral progression (and a requirement of 40
13
doctoral progression)
After doctoral progression and before submission
20
Total (a requirement of submission)
At least 20 of these credits must relate to research
skills and techniques (RCUK skills category A), and at
60
least 20 to the broader (generic) skills associated with
personal development and employability (RCUK skills
categories B-G)
2. Clinical research training in speciality
Prior to submission (and a requirement of submission) 40
2.2.8
Research students initially registered on or after August 1st 2013 are required to
engage with subject-specific research training as specified by their Research
Institute, and with personal development and employability skills training at a level at
least consistent with Research Council expectations, currently around 2 weeks per
year or 200 hours over 3 years of a FT PhD. Skills may be developed through
accredited Keele modules (10 credits is equivalent to 100 hours), non-accredited
courses in a variety of formats, or a mixture of both. Engagement will be assessed by
the RI PG Committee, who may require additional training to be undertaken. For PhD
students, formal assessment will take place at Doctoral Progression (see 3.6) and the
pre-submission review (see 3.7). Appropriate engagement at each of these stages
will be reported to Research Degrees Committee as part of the progression and presubmission review processes. No student may submit their thesis unless and until he
or she has fulfilled the relevant research training requirements as set out here (see
section 4.1 and Regulation 2D(10)).
2.2.9
Exceptions, exemptions or credits to the research training requirements may be made
for students who have already successfully completed the whole or parts of an
equivalent programme. Students are required to apply to their RI PG Committee for
exemption using the form provided on the Postgraduate Research webpages. For
Research students initially registered prior to August 1st 2013 and therefore on a
compulsory credit-based module training programme, no more than 40 credits of
research training exemptions will be granted before doctoral progression; subject to
satisfactory doctoral progression and the completion of the procedures for applying
for module exemptions, up to a further 20 credits of exemption may be requested.
2.2.10 All research training agreed and/or taken (and approved exemptions) must be
recorded by the student in the student’s Personal Development and Learning Plan,
including a critical review of what the student has learned and how this will contribute
to the development of the research project or to the acquisition or development of
‘generic’ or subject-specific research skills.
2.3
Student support services
2.3.1
The University provides a range of student support services, all of which are available
for research students who wish to make use of them. Services include learning
support, disability, careers, and counselling. Information on these services can be
found at http://www.keele.ac.uk/sll/keelelifeenewslettersissue1/ssdswelcomesyou/.
2.3.2
The Keele Postgraduate Association (KPA) is the body responsible for promotion of
the general interests of postgraduate students and for giving a recognised channel of
communication between postgraduate students and the University authorities. It
provides additional support services geared to the needs of postgraduate students,
14
and has elected officers including Chair, Secretary, Treasurer, Welfare Officer, and
both Postgraduate Research Degree (PGR) and Postgraduate Taught Course (PGT)
representatives for each faculty.
2.3.3
2.4
Keele University Students’ Union (KeeleSU) is responsible for promoting the general
interests of all students (including postgraduates) and, again, gives a recognised
channel of communication between students and the University authorities. KeeleSU
provides a variety of support services such as the Independent Advice Unit, and
elected officers who can help students with academic and welfare advice.
Bursaries and studentships
2.4.1
The University normally has a number of bursaries and studentships (“awards”)
available for research degree study. They may be funded by the University centrally,
the Research Institute, or by an external sponsor (following competition, negotiation
or an allocation process).
2.4.2
All awards will be advertised, at least on the Postgraduate Research Studentships
website (http://www.keele.ac.uk/pgresearch/choosingaresearchdegree/studentships/).
Eligibility and selection criteria will be clear in all further particulars of awards,
application processes and closing dates clearly identified, and the processes used for
selection will be mindful of equal opportunities issues.
2.4.3
In some cases, the University may require that recipients of awards undertake some
hours’ work experience, which may be teaching, research or administration. The
precise nature of the work experience may be a condition of the award (as set out in
the further particulars), or it may be subject to negotiation. Some forms of work may
also be subject to training requirements.
15
SECTION 3: Managing & Monitoring Student Admission & Progress
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
3.1
Admission, registration and arrival
Period of registration until submission
Requirement to remain in good academic standing
Academic warnings
Regular progress monitoring
Formal doctoral progression procedures
Progression to continuation mode of attendance
Withdrawal from research degree study
The student record.
Admission, registration and arrival
For further details, please refer to Regulation 2D (2), (3)
3.1.1
The minimum requirement for admission to a research degree shall be as specified in
Regulation 2D (2). Research Institutes may have additional criteria which they apply
in selecting candidates for research degrees. Where the applicant’s first language is
not English, the applicant will be required to demonstrate proficiency in English
language which meets UK Borders Agency (UKBA) requirements.
3.1.2
No applicant will be accepted unless the University is confident that they have the
capacity to complete a research degree successfully, and that the University has the
expertise and facilities to support the applicant’s proposed research.
3.1.3
No project will be approved unless it is appropriate for the degree concerned, and it
can reasonably be undertaken within the required timescale with the resources
available.
3.1.4
All applications will be considered by a Postgraduate Administrator in the RI and by at
least two academic staff within the relevant Research Institute, representing the
Postgraduate Committee. Selection will be made on the basis of all information
available, including the application form, proposed area of research, qualifications,
references and (where used) interview. Applicants will be accepted only if the
University believes that they are likely to be successful in completing the research
degree for which they have applied.
3.1.5
Equal opportunities information will be collected from all applicants, using a form
separate from the application form. This information will not be used in the selection
process, except in so far as the University will wish to ascertain that it has the
appropriate facilities to support applicants with disabilities.
3.1.6
All offers of a place will be made by the University following positive assessment and
recommendation by the relevant Director of Postgraduate Research.,
3.1.7
Any student wishing to change course from MPhil to PhD should make a formal
request to the Research Institute Postgraduate Committee for permission to transfer
from MPhil to PhD and permission to submit for PhD progression. The Committee
will consider the following issues in relation to the request:
•
•
Does the student have the appropriate qualifications and experience for the
PhD programme?
Is the scale and nature of the project appropriate for a PhD?
16
•
•
•
Is the student’s MPhil work to date likely to meet PhD progression criteria
(see 3.6)?
Does the time spent and training completed on the MPhil meet, in part, PhD
timescale and training requirements?
What allowance should be made towards PhD requirements in light of the
time, work and training completed on the MPhil?
If the RI Postgraduate Committee finds that the student meets the criteria for the PhD
programme, the student will be permitted to submit for PhD progression. The
Committee should arrange for a PhD progression as soon as possible. If the student
passes PhD progression, the Records & Exams Officer for Postgraduate Research
Students in consultation with the Research Institute will record the change of course
approved, together with the time allowance agreed towards the PhD period, the date
of transfer, and PhD submission deadline.
3.1.8
For as long as students are pursuing their programmes of study, they must remain
formally registered with the University and pay the appropriate level of fees. Although
the normal expectation is that students will retain the same mode of attendance
throughout their periods of study, they may choose to change their mode of
attendance. Possible mode of attendance options are as follows:
•
•
•
•
Full-time
Part-time
Leave of absence
Continuation.
More information about mode of attendance is given in Annex A3. Approval needs to
be obtained from the Postgraduate Committee for any change of mode of attendance.
There are additional requirements and procedures for Leave of Absence (see 3.1.9),
transfer to continuation status (see 3.8) and for transfer from Full-time to Part-time
(see Annex A3).
3.1.9
Any student who wishes to transfer from PhD to MPhil should make a formal
request to the Research Institute Postgraduate Committee for permission to transfer
from PhD to MPhil stating the reasons for the request and the expected time to
completion and submission of the MPhil thesis. This request may be accompanied
by a request to transfer to Continuation status (see 3.8 and Annex A3) if appropriate.
The time allowed to complete and submit the MPhil from the transfer date shall not
exceed the maximum continuation period (see 3.2.1 and Regulation 2D) of 1 year for
FT and 2 years for PT, and will normally be significantly less. Any request for transfer
that includes a submission date beyond that allowed for MPhil (calculated from initial
registration, see 3.2.1 and Regulation 2D), will be subject to approval of an extension
(see 3.2.7) by Research Degrees Committee.
3.1.10 Fees for research degree study are set annually for a 12 month period from 1
October. Research students are required to pay the level of fee appropriate to their
Research Institute and mode of attendance, on a pro rata basis.
3.1.11 At least once a year there will be a University induction programme to introduce new
research students to the University and key staff, to postgraduate research study, and
to one another. In addition, Postgraduate Committees shall arrange their own
induction programmes for new students.
17
3.2
3.2.1
Period of registration until submission
For further details, please refer to Regulation 2D (4), (7)
The time limits for completion of a research degree are set out in Regulation 2D. In
summary, the requirements are as follows:
Degree
registered
for
Mode of
attendance
(registration
status)
Minimum
period of
supervision
from initial
registration
Expected
time to
submission
from initial
registration
Maximum time
to submission
from initial
registration
Masters
degree
(MPhil)
Full-time
12 months
18 months
24 months
Part-time
24 months
36 months
48 months
Doctoral
degree
(PhD, DM,
MD)
Full-time
24 months
36 months
48 months
Part-time
48 months
72 months
96 months
The expected time to submission will be extended appropriately where an external
funder provides a studentship for a longer period, but will not exceed the maximum
period listed above. The normal expectation is that for all or part of any period of
study beyond the expected time to submission the student will be on continuation
mode of attendance, but this is subject to the student meeting the requirements for
continuation mode of attendance (see 3.8 below).
3.2.2
The University will be paying particular attention to the percentage of students who
submit their thesis for examination within the maximum timescales allowed.
a) Each Research Institute is required to agree with their Faculty Dean their
target submission rate, which is unlikely to be less than 100% for any
Research Institute, and will be 100% for all research council funded students
b) Statistics will be calculated on the basis of the full-time and part-time cohorts
of students starting in any academic year (1 August–31 July), and the
percentage who submit within the maximum time allowed, which will be an
anniversary of their start date
c) Periods of leave of absence agreed by Research Degrees Committee and
where appropriate the research council will be taken into account when
determining the percentage of students meeting the submission rate target.
3.2.3
Students will be required to pay full-time or part-time fees for the full period of their
registration until submission; unless and until they are permitted by the Postgraduate
Committee and Research Degrees Committee to progress to continuation mode of
attendance (see 3.8).
3.2.4
For further information, please see section 3.11. Any agreed periods of leave of
absence will automatically extend the student’s maximum period for submission by an
equivalent period.
.
3.2.5
Any student who fails to submit their thesis by the due date for any reason will be
withdrawn from the University.
18
3.2.6
In exceptional circumstances the maximum period may be extended by the Research
Degrees Committee, on behalf of Senate, by not more than 12 months. The
procedure for requesting an extension is as follows:
• Any request for an extension to the maximum time must come from the
Research Institute’s Postgraduate Committee
• A case needs to be made on the basis of the whole period of study since
initial registration, explaining why the student has not been able to complete
within the normal maximum time, estimating the time which the student will
need to complete, and advising on an appropriate extension. [Note: The
case should include such factors as: Has there been a history of illness? Is
there a record of non-submission of work? Has the student always been
hampered by heavy work loads in their employment? Research Degrees
Committee needs to see the full picture, as set out by the department, so that
it can make a reasonable decision on the specific case]
• Research Degrees Committee will normally allow only one extension.
3.2.7
Students who fail to maintain satisfactory academic progress, in accordance with
university requirements, may be required to withdraw (see 3.3).
3.3
Requirement to remain in good academic standing
For further details, please refer to Regulation 2D (8)
3.3.1
In order to remain in good academic standing, all students are required to maintain
active study and a satisfactory standard of work, and failure to do so may result in a
requirement to withdraw from the University.
3.3.2
In order to demonstrate that students are actively studying they will be expected to
keep in regular contact with their Lead Supervisor, and submit work regularly in
accordance with the schedule agreed with the Lead Supervisor and set out in the
Personal Development and Learning Plan. It is the responsibility of students to
ensure that Lead Supervisors are kept informed about any barriers to their
satisfactory progress.
3.3.3
Students will be informed of any concerns about the standard of their work, either by
their Lead Supervisor (during normal supervision sessions or in written comments on
work submitted) or as a result of formal progress reviews by Postgraduate
Committees. Students should take such concerns expressed seriously and ensure
that they take steps to improve the standard of their work. If comments from
supervisors are not made in writing, students should request that such feedback be
put in writing.
3.3.4
There are a number of mechanisms available to Research Institutes to manage the
progress of research students, as set out in the following paragraphs of this section.
However, there may be circumstances where it is clear that the student does not
have a realistic likelihood of successful completion of a research degree within the
permitted time limits, and the student may be required to withdraw. It should be
noted that it is no one’s interests for the student to continue to pursue a research
degree in such circumstances.
3.3.5
There are three ways in which a student may be required to withdraw on the basis of
failure to maintain good academic standing:
a) Procedures under the academic warning process (see 3.4 below) can give
rise to a recommendation for a student to withdraw. This would arise should
19
a student be issued a third and final warning and fail to comply with the terms
of the warning
b) Procedures under regular progress monitoring (see 3.5 below) can give rise
to a recommendation for a student to withdraw. Specifically, if a student
receives two successive grade E grades (unsatisfactory) on progress reports,
the Postgraduate Committee can recommend to the Research Degrees
Committee that the student be required to withdraw
c) Procedures under doctoral progression (see 3.6 below) can give rise to a
recommendation for a student to withdraw. Following the doctoral
progression procedure the Postgraduate Committee can recommend to the
Research Degrees Committee that the student be required to withdraw.
3.3.6
3.4
The student has the right of appeal against the decision taken by Research Degrees
Committee that the student be required to withdraw.
Academic warnings
3.4.1
At any time, where the Postgraduate Committee, on advice from a Lead Supervisor,
is dissatisfied with the amount or quality of work submitted or undertaken by the
student, the Director of Postgraduate Research may issue a formal warning to the
student under the terms of Regulation 2D (8), specifying the work which must be
undertaken during the following 4 weeks.
3.4.2
Failure to comply with the requirements may give rise to a second formal warning
from the Director of Postgraduate Research.
3.4.3
If the student has still failed to comply sufficiently with the terms of the second
warning, the Director of Postgraduate Research can issue a third and final warning to
the student.
3.4.4
If the student fails to comply with the terms of the third warning, the Postgraduate
Committee can recommend to the Research Degrees Committee that the student be
required to withdraw.
3.4.5
Students under warning are not in good academic standing. Once the terms of a
warning have been fulfilled, the student will return to being in good academic
standing. Any further problems would be subject to another initial warning.
3.4.6
Where the supervisors have serious concerns about the standard of work, or the
student’s level of active study, Directors of Postgraduate Research should not delay
seeking the approval of the Postgraduate Committee for the issuing of a first warning
since the period from issuing the first warning until the expiry of the third and final
warning is a minimum of 12 weeks.
3.4.7
Research Institutes should ensure that warning letters to students are very clear
about the nature of the work which is required to be completed and/or submitted
within the 4-week timescale in order to fulfil the terms of the warning.
3.4.8
Copies of all warning letters should be sent to the Records & Exams Officer for
Postgraduate Research Students
20
3.5
Regular progress monitoring
3.5.1
All Postgraduate Committees shall have procedures for the regular formal monitoring
of research students’ progress, to take place no less frequently than 6-monthly (in
Spring and Autumn). Postgraduate Committees may find it useful to specify in the RI
Handbooks the deadlines in the year for submission of progress reports.
a) Note that if doctoral progression for a student falls at the same time the RI is
not required also to conduct a progress review at that time
b) Students on leave of absence at the time the progress review is due should
have their Personal Development and Learning Plan reassessed on their
return to study, and then be reviewed at the next due date after their return.
3.5.2
Postgraduate Committees should devise two report forms for completion separately
by the Supervisor and student, to suit their own requirements. However, as a
minimum they should include the sections and questions set out in Annex B5.
3.5.3
It is the Lead Supervisor’s responsibility to ensure that Supervisor progress report
forms are completed and submitted to the Postgraduate Committee in a timely
manner.
All Supervisor progress reports will include a recommended grade of the student’s
progress in accordance with the scale set out in Annex B5. Any student who receives
an Unsatisfactory six-monthly progress report (grade E) is considered to be failing to
meet the requirements for maintaining good academic standing and will be issued
with a formal warning which clearly states that if the subsequent progress report is
also unsatisfactory, then the student may be required to withdraw from the University.
3.5.4
It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that Student progress report forms are
completed and submitted to the Postgraduate Committee in a timely manner,
together with the most up-to-date version of the Personal Development and Learning
Plan if required by the Postgraduate Committee. Failure by the student to complete
their progress report form or to keep their Personal Development and Learning Plan
up to date is likely to lead to the student receiving a low grade.
3.5.5
Postgraduate Committees should consider together the reports from the Lead
Supervisor and the student, informed where appropriate by the most up-to-date
Personal Development and Learning Plan, and determine an overall grade as well as
any action required. Students should be informed of the outcome of the progress
review.
3.5.6
Postgraduate Committees are required to update the student record when students
have been reviewed. Where the Postgraduate Committee requires the University to
take any action, this should be notified separately in a memo from the Director of
Postgraduate Research to the Research Degrees Committee.
3.5.7
All recommendations from Postgraduate Committees that students be required to
withdraw for not remaining in good academic standing must be sent to the Research
Degrees Committee for approval.
3.6
Formal doctoral progression procedures
For further details, please refer to Regulation 2D (6)
21
3.6.1
For intending doctoral candidates, all Postgraduate Committees shall have formal
procedures for determining a student’s suitability for doctoral study, normally within
the first 10-12 months’ full-time study (or equivalent for part-time). If appropriate this
will replace the normal 6-monthly progress review (see 3.5.1). At this stage, the
Postgraduate Committee should have sufficient information to be able to determine
one of the following:
• The student is suitable for doctoral study and may progress
• The student is not suitable for doctoral study, but is suitable for masters level
study and should now be required to prepare a thesis for submission for a
research masters’ degree
• The student is unlikely successfully to complete a research degree and
should be required to withdraw
• The student is not yet suitable for progression and, following review, has
been given a programme of work to complete over a period not exceeding 2
months (or equivalent part-time) at which time the student’s suitability for
doctoral study will be reassessed.
3.6.2
Following Assessment or Reassessment, the Research Institute Postgraduate
Committee will recommend the appropriate final outcome to the Research Degrees
Committee which will issue formal approval.
3.6.3
In exceptional circumstances only, the Postgraduate Committee may choose to give
the student an additional period of time beyond the initial 12 months before being
assessed for progression.
3.6.4
No student may pass doctoral progression unless and until he or she has fulfilled the
relevant research training requirements as set out in COP section 2.2.
3.6.5
Confirmation of doctoral progression should be a formal process which includes both
a written report (up to 5,000 words) and an oral discussion with the panel considering
the case. It may also include a presentation. Further information about appropriate
procedures and criteria, and the constitution of the panel, is given in Annex B4.
3.6.6
Postgraduate Committees are required to make recommendations to the Research
Degrees Committee about the outcome of the process (giving full details in cases
where the recommendation is that students should either submit for a masters’
degree or withdraw). Postgraduate Committees should also inform students of their
recommendations immediately, making it clear that the recommendations need to be
confirmed by Research Degrees Committee.
3.7
3.7.1
3.8
30 Month review procedures
All PhD students must undergo a pre-submission review at no later than 30 months
(FT) or 60 months (PT). The presubmission statement (countersigned by the
supervisor) must be submitted to the relevant RI postgraduate committee who may
require action to be taken to address any potential difficulities with either missing the
agreed submission date or fulfilling the relevant research training requirements as set
out in section 2.2 The RI postgraduate committee will forward the pre-submission
statement to Research Degrees Committee.
Progression to continuation mode of attendance
22
3.8.1
In order to transfer registration to continuation mode of attendance students must
have completed the minimum period of supervision and also be formally evaluated by
the Postgraduate Committee to ensure that they have satisfied the criteria for such
status. Postgraduate Committees must have procedures in place for such evaluation.
a) 3.8.2 In order for a student to be allowed to register as a continuation
student, Postgraduate Committees must be satisfied that the student will
submit the thesis within a maximum of 12 months (24 months PT)
and
b) that the 30 month review has been completed to a satisfactory standard for
FT students (60 months for PT)
and
c) that a Personal Development and Learning Plan and thesis plan with clear
timescales for completion of chapters / sections is in place
and
d) that the work still required to be completed up to submission of the thesis is
such that it can be satisfactorily completed using only the following level of
resources:
•
•
•
Minimal supervision, primarily related to reading and commenting on draft
thesis chapters
Access to the library and other facilities
Use of computing facilities in the Research Institute.
If additional resources are required, particularly project-related resources or a higher
level of supervision, then Postgraduate Committees should not recommend
registration as a continuation student.
3.8.3
3.9
3.9.1
Postgraduate Committees should report the outcome of the process to Research
Degrees Committee. Research Degrees Committee will approve all transfers to
continuation status.
Withdrawal from research degree study
At any stage of research degree study, students may wish to, or be required to,
withdraw from their studies (subject to due process as set out above).
3.10 The student record
3.10.1 All parties associated with a student must recognise their responsibility for ensuring
that accurate and complete student records are maintained, with recognition and
understanding of the Data Protection Act and the Freedom of Information Act.
3.10.2 The Directorate of Planning and Academic Administration will have the primary
responsibility for maintaining the electronic student record, recording student personal
details, qualifications, and registration details. Research Institutes are required to
inform the Records & Exams Officer for Postgraduate Research Students of any
changes of which they become aware. Students are required to keep the Records &
Exams Officer informed of any changes which affect their record, including changes
of address or other contact details. The Records & Exams Officer will also maintain a
paper file on each student to include essential documents and correspondence.
23
3.10.3 Research Institute Postgraduate Committees are required to maintain accurate
records of their meetings, recording all decisions relating to students.
3.10.4 Supervisors are required to maintain records of formal supervisory meetings with
students, noting the dates, a brief outline of the issues discussed and any decisions
taken. Supervisors may delegate this responsibility to the students provided both
parties have a copy of the meeting note and agree to it. Students are required to
maintain records of all supervisory meetings in their Personal Development and
Learning Plan.
3.10.5 All parties should recognise that in the case of any disagreement, a full record of
meetings, decisions and actions will be to everyone’s benefit in determining whether
the parties have behaved reasonably.
3.11
Leave of Absence
For further details, please refer to Regulation 2D (9)
3.11.1 Students may be permitted to take leave of absence from their programmes for a
minimum of 1 month and a maximum of 12 months. Students can request a leave of
absence for the following reasons:
i.
ii.
iii.
iv.
v.
Medical reasons, as recommended by the Campus GP and/or their doctor
Maternity/paternity/adoption leave
Bereavement
Other valid personal reasons
Personal Financial Hardship
3.11.2 Students may be requested to support their leave of absence request with
documentary evidence, for example:
i.
ii.
iii.
iv.
Medical certificate
Birth certificates/adoption certificates
Death certificates/divorce decrees
Bank statements
3.11.3 Requests for a leave of absence should initially be discussed with your supervisor. If
your supervisor supports your request, an application should be made to your
Research Institute Postgraduate Committee, where a decision will be taken.
Applications should be made using the approved form at Annex C7. All leaves of
absence will be reported to Research Degrees Committee.
3.11.4 During periods of approved leave of absence, students will not be expected to
maintain active study on their research; therefore you will not have access to
University facilities during this period, although you will have access to your email
account and other IT resources.
3.11.5 No fees will be payable during this period. If you are sponsored you should inform
your sponsor and ensure that they are willing to support you through the extended
submission date. If the sponsor is a UK Research Council then any approval of a
leave of absence will be subject to approval by the Research Council if such approval
is required. The University will then seek Research Council approval, provide current
information via JeS as appropriate and inform the student of the outcome.
24
3.11.6 International students will need to speak to International Student Support regarding
their visa before requesting a leave of absence. Students who apply for, and are
granted, a leave of absence will have their Visa curtailed and will need to return to
their home country for the duration of the leave of absence. Near to the end of the
leave of absence they will be contacted by their RI to confirm that you wish to return
to your studies. If the student wishes to return, the University will need to apply for a
new CAS for you. Owing to its responsibilities as a Highly Trusted Sponsor of
international students, the University is unable to support retrospective leave of
absence. Therefore it is imperative that the student raises any issues they are
experiencing with your supervisor at the earliest possible stage.
3.11.7 It is possible to take a break of less than 1 month with the agreement of the
supervisor. The University has specific procedures in place for notification of a
student’s whereabouts during periods away from the University. Information is
available at:
http://www.keele.ac.uk/immigration
‘Research or Writing Up Thesis/Dissertation away from Keele – Postgraduate
Students’
3.11.8 The Case Conference Process:
A case conference process exists to assist the University in managing emerging
concerns related to a student’s physical and mental health, and to identify appropriate
measures to support the student. It involved two stages:
Stage 1: Identifying and addressing emerging concern at RI level:
• Staff within a Research Institute, normally via the Postgraduate Committee, will
consider information regarding the health and wellbeing of the student and its
potential impact on their research programme
• The designated body considers the options available to the student and makes a
recommendation on whether the student should be asked to take a compulsory
leave of absence or whether an initial support plan can be put in place to assist the
student.
Stage 2: Managing continuing cases of concern:
• In complex cases (e.g. severe mental or physical health) or in cases where
emerging concerns identified at Stage 1 have been realised and progress is not
being made, a wider case review meeting would normally be convened by Student
Support and Development Services (SSDS) in consultation with the RI. A wider
case review meeting would also be convened for students who had taken a leave
of absence following a Stage 1 meeting and were seeking to return to study.
It is expected that students will be made aware that the wider case review meeting is
taking place via their research supervisor or their nominee. It is proposed that student
representation at the case review meeting other than that of the student concerned
should not be allowed on the basis of student confidentiality.
The wider case review meeting would provide individuals concerned an opportunity to
discuss whether a student should be requested to take a compulsory leave of
absence and follow transition arrangements on return from a leave of absence.
3.11.9 In exceptional cases the University may require a student to take a compulsory leave
of absence in the interests of their wellbeing. This step would only be taken if all other
routes have been exhausted to assist the student with any issues that they are
25
experiencing. Any request to take a compulsory leave of absence would be made on
the basis of expert advice.
3.11.10 Identification of students requiring additional support would normally be made through
the University’s Critical Incident Support Team (CIST). Once CIST has been informed
and handled the initial evaluation of the case through its established procedures a
student may be further referred for consideration for a compulsory leave of absence.
3.11.12 A compulsory leave of absence can be triggered through a Case Conference
process.
3.11.13 Any student required by the University to take a compulsory leave of absence would
have the right of appeal. Further information on the appeals procedure is included in
Regulation 2D.
26
SECTION 4: Examinations & Appeals
For further details, please refer to Regulation 2D (4), (7), (10) and (11)
•
•
•
•
•
4.1
Submission
Examination
Research Degrees Committee (RDC) and Senate
Appeals
Resubmission.
Submission
Students are expected to submit their thesis in accordance with the time limits set out
Regulation 2D (see also 3.2 above) as amended by any formal extensions granted by
the Research Degrees Committee or as granted automatically following periods of
leave of absence.
4.1.2
Within those time limits, it is the student’s responsibility to decide when to submit the
thesis. When submitting a thesis for examination, the student will be required to sign
a Part 1 Declaration about the conduct of the research and the presentation of the
research in the thesis (see 1.6.5 above). Lead supervisors will be notified that
students have submitted their theses.
4.1.3
Prior to submission it is essential that the Postgraduate Committee has approved the
final thesis title (see Annex D4 section 14 for details) and that the Research Degrees
Committee has subsequently approved the examiners for the thesis and the chair of
the oral examination (see Annex B7 for details). It is recommended that these
processes be initiated at least 3 months prior to expected submission date.
4.1.4
No student may submit their thesis unless and until he or she has fulfilled the relevant
research training requirements as set out in COP section 2.2.
4.1.5
When preparing a thesis for submission, students should follow the guidance set out
in Annex D4. In particular students should note that the following sections of Annex
D4 are formal requirements which must be complied with if students are not to
jeopardise the acceptance of their thesis or the award of their degree:
• Format for presentation of a thesis (sections 12-20)
• Submitting your thesis for examination (sections 21-24).
4.1.6
Students should submit their thesis to the Quality Assurance Officer (with
responsibility for PGR activities). There are some circumstances in which the Quality
Assurance Officer will refuse to accept a thesis for examination, as set out below:
• Where the student has not successfully completed the required research
training
• Where a student fails to sign the Declarations required on submission
• Where the Part 1 Declaration is not bound into the submission
• Where there is no Abstract
• Where no thesis title has been approved
• Where the thesis title on the thesis differs from the approved title
• Where the thesis is over the word limit
• Where the thesis does not comply significantly with the guidance on
preparation and presentation of a research thesis (see Annex D4 on
Preparation and presentation of a research thesis, sections 12-24).
27
As a general principle, if the failure relates to faults on the part of the University rather
than the student, the student will not in any way be penalised for this.
4.2
Examination
4.2.1
There will normally be two examiners for a research thesis, one external and one
internal. In some circumstances (e.g. where the candidate is a member of staff, or if
no appropriate internal examiner can be found, or at the discretion of Research
Degrees Committee), a second external examiner will take the place of the internal
examiner. Exceptionally there may be a third examiner. In no circumstances will a
member of the candidate’s Supervisory team be an examiner.
4.2.2
All oral examinations will have an Independent Chair. The Independent Chair, who
will be provided with the abstract of the thesis rather than the entire thesis, will be
responsible for the conduct of the viva and the timely submission of all reports.
4.2.3
Both examiners, the Independent Chair and the candidate must be present during the
oral examination. All examinations normally take place on the premises of Keele
University (including off campus research facilities which are part of the Keele RI
structure) but in exceptional circumstances video-conferencing of vivas and other
locations may be employed. Prior permission for video conference vivas and non
Keele University venues must be approved by Research Degrees Committee. Under
no circumstances will a viva be conducted by telephone.
4.2.4
The examination of the thesis will be conducted in reference to the criteria for awards
(see Annex A1).
4.2.5
The thesis will be sent to each of the examiners with a request for an independent
report, to include a preliminary recommendation. (In a few cases, where the thesis
contains confidential material, examiners may be asked to sign a confidentiality
agreement.) The report (known as the “Part I report”) should normally be submitted
no later than one month after receiving the request, and at least one week before the
oral examination.
4.2.6
The supervisor may exceptionally be present if all parties wish it.
4.2.7
The aim of the oral examination is to evaluate whether the candidate has met the
standards for the award. It has the following specific objectives:
• To confirm or revise the examiner’s initial views about the standard of the
candidate’s research, based on the thesis
• To identify and discuss any amendments to the thesis which may be required
to meet the standard for the award
• To determine as far as possible whether the Declaration Part 1 made by the
candidate on submission of the thesis is true.
4.2.8
On conclusion of the oral examination the examiners will agree a recommendation
(see Annex A2 for available recommendations) and write a joint report (which will
include details of any required revisions to the thesis). The joint report must normally
be completed after the examination and normally submitted within a week of the
examination to the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR activities) by
the Independent Chair.
28
4.2.9
The expectation is that the whole examination process, from date of submission of
thesis to receiving the joint recommendation from the examiners and Part II of their
reports after the oral examination, should take no longer than three months.
4.2.10 The candidate will have the right, after completion of the examination process, to
receive a copy of all the examiners’ reports. These will be sent to the student as a
matter of course.
4.2.11 Full details of oral examination procedures and format for examiners’ reports are
given in Annexes B8 and B9.
4.3
Research Degrees Committee and Senate
4.3.1
Examiners’ reports and recommendations are considered by the Research Degrees
Committee, which makes recommendations to Senate. (Available recommendations
listed in Annex A2.)
4.3.2
Where an award is recommended (recommendations 1, 2, 4), no recommendation
will be made to Senate until all required revisions have been completed and signed
off, and the thesis has been lodged in the Library.
4.3.3
Where the recommendation is 3 (resubmission for PhD), 5 (resubmission for MPhil)
or 6 (fail), the recommendation will be made to the Senate following the meeting of
Research Degrees Committee.
4.3.4
Where the recommendation is 2 (minor revisions), if the candidate fails to complete
the minor revisions within the period allowed the candidate will be failed. There is a
right of appeal.
4.3.5
Where the recommendation is 3 (resubmission for PhD) or 5 (resubmission for
MPhil), if the candidate fails to resubmit within the period allowed the candidate will
be failed. There is a right of appeal.
4.3.6
The procedures to be followed after examination are set out in the following sections
of Annex D4, and will vary according to the Recommendation being made by the
Research Degrees Committee:
• After examination (sections 25-29)
• Lodging the thesis in the library and copyright issues (sections 30-45).
4.4
4.4.1
Appeals
For further details, please refer to Regulation 7
Candidates have the right to appeal to the University Academic Appeals Committee
against decisions of Research Degrees Committee concerning the following:
• Doctoral progression procedures (see 3.6)
• Requirement to withdraw for not maintaining good academic standing (see
3.3-3.6)
• Award following examination (see 4.3 and Annex A2).
All appeals will be conducted in accordance with procedures set out in Regulation 7.
4.4.2
Doctoral progression procedures
29
Students have the right to appeal against the decision of the Research Degrees
Committee concerning doctoral progression only on the following grounds:
• Procedural irregularities during the process of considering the request for
doctoral progression
• Extenuating Circumstances exist affecting the student’s progress of which the
Research Degrees Committee was not aware at the time it made its decision,
that these circumstances can be substantiated, and that there is a valid
reason for not notifying the Research Degrees Committee
• Inadequacy of supervision, training, facilities or resources, contrary to the
requirements set out in the Code of Practice including the Research Institute
Handbook or other written agreement between the Research Institute and the
student.
Appeals will be heard by the University Academic Appeals Committee.
4.4.3
Requirement to withdraw for not maintaining good academic standing
Students have the right to appeal against the decision of the Research Degrees
Committee that they be required to withdraw for not maintaining good academic
standing only on the following grounds:
• Procedural irregularities in relation to recording and reporting the student’s
academic progress
• Extenuating Circumstances exist affecting the student’s academic progress of
which the Research Degrees Committee was not aware at the time it made
its decision, that these circumstances can be substantiated, and that there is
a valid reason for not notifying the Research Degrees Committee
• Inadequacy of supervision, training, facilities or resources, contrary to the
requirements set out in the Code of Practice including the Research Institute
Handbook or other written agreement between the Research Institute and the
student, including the Personal Development and Learning Plan.
Appeals will be heard by the University Academic Appeals Committee.
4.4.4
Award following examination
Students have the right to appeal against the recommendation of Research Degrees
Committee to Senate about an award only on the following grounds:
• If there were procedural irregularities in the conduct of the examination
• If Extenuating Circumstances exist affecting the candidate’s performance at
oral examination of which the examiners were not aware.
Appeals will be heard by the University Academic Appeals Committee.
4.4.5
For clarification, the following are NOT eligible grounds for appeal:
• The academic judgement of examiners does not constitute grounds for
appeal
• For award following examination: alleged inadequacy of supervisory or other
arrangements during the period of study – any concerns must be raised
during the period of active supervision, and do not constitute grounds for
appeal against award following submission of the thesis (though students are
permitted to submit a complaint at this stage).
4.4.6
All appeals must be lodged with the secretary to the University Academic Appeals
Committee in accordance with timescales and procedures set out in Regulation 7.
30
4.5
Resubmission
4.5.1
If the student is invited to resubmit the thesis (Recommendation 3 or 5) resubmission
may be at any time within two years of the date of Senate approving the
recommendation. The normal expectation is that the original examiners will be used
also for the resubmission. Candidates should not consult the examiners between
completion of the original examination process and resubmission but will be guided
by their supervisors in the light of the examiners’ reports and any other feedback.
4.5.2
Examination of the resubmitted thesis shall focus upon whether the revisions required
after the first examination have been completed satisfactorily. Examiners may not
introduce new requirements at this stage. In other respects the thesis will be
examined in the same way as the original submission, except that examiners may
choose not to require a second oral examination if the resubmitted thesis is
satisfactory. Only one resubmission is allowed.
4.5.3
Where a recommendation of Resubmission is due to be confirmed by Senate, the
Director of Postgraduate Research in the student’s Research Institute will discuss the
implications of the decision with the student as soon as possible but normally no later
than one month after the Senate decision. Where possible the Director of
Postgraduate Research will arrange to meet the student at Keele unless the student
indicates that this is not required. If the student then decides that they intend to
resubmit, the student and the intended Lead Supervisor for the student’s period of
resubmission are normally required to provide a workplan and timetable for
resubmission as part of the resubmission statement (Annex C11) which also includes:
• Student details and thesis title
• The name of the Lead Supervisor who will support the student during the
period of resubmission (who may or may not be the same as the original
Lead Supervisor)
• A signed declaration from the student indicating:
i. that the requirements for resubmission have been explained
ii. whether or not they intend to submit
iii. that they are satisfied that appropriate arrangements have been
put in place to support them during the period of resubmission
• whether a meeting at Keele with the Director of Postgraduate Research is
requested
A copy of this statement accompanied by the workplan and timetable for submission
agreed with the Lead Supervisor must be sent to the Director of Postgraduate
Research who will forward it to the Research Degrees Committee (RDC) for approval.
4.5.4
Where the student confirms in this statement that he or she will not be making a
resubmission, the case will be referred back to Research Degrees Committee for a
recommendation about whether the thesis should fail or be awarded a lesser degree.
4.5.5
Students will be required to pay Continuation fees for the period of resubmission.
4.5.6
In exceptional circumstances the maximum period for resubmission may be extended
by Research Degrees Committee on behalf of Senate, by not more than 12 months.
The procedure for requesting an extension is as set out in paragraph 3.2.7.
4.5.7
If the candidate fails to resubmit within the two years allowed (or any approved
extended period), the candidate will be failed. There is a right of appeal.
31
32
SECTION 5: Quality Assurance
•
•
•
•
5.1
Criteria for awards
Research Institutes and Schools
Research Degrees Committee
Quality Assurance Committee.
Criteria for awards
Standards of awards are assured in part by having clearly articulated criteria for
awards which conform to national standards (see Annex A1), and a single set of
recommendations for examiners with clear guidance about circumstances in which
they should be used (see Annex A2).
5.2
Research Institutes and Schools
5.2.1
Research Institutes have the primary responsibility for the delivery of research degree
programmes. Schools and Research Institutes, supported by the LPDC, have
responsibility for the delivery of research training modules.
The University
Postgraduate Research Committee has the responsibility for monitoring the quality of
research degree programmes delivered by Research Institutes and the overall quality
of the research training programme delivered by Research Institutes, Schools and the
LPDC.
5.2.2
The University Postgraduate Research Committee, including representation from
each Research Institute and from students, is a principal mechanism for ensuring
consistency of process across the University, spread of good practice, and
identification of issues to be addressed.
5.2.3
The University Postgraduate Research Committee is responsible for developing
mechanisms for obtaining feedback from students about the quality of research
degree provision and for addressing issues arising as appropriate. (See also COP
section 6)
5.3
Research Degrees Committee
5.3.1
The Research Degrees Committee (RDC) is responsible for considering reports and
recommendations from examiners and for agreeing a final recommendation to
Senate. In carrying out this role they will have particular regard to the following:
• Whether examiners have taken appropriate account of the criteria for awards
• Whether there is consistency between the detail of each report and the
recommendation
• Whether there is sufficient agreement between the examiners for a joint
recommendation to be appropriate
• Whether reports provide sufficient guidance about required revisions (a) for
the Committee to determine whether the recommendation should be minor
revisions or resubmission, and (b) for the candidate to make the necessary
revisions
• Whether the reports are an adequate basis on which to make any
recommendation.
5.3.2
The Research Degrees Committee also has a role in ensuring the quality and
consistency of research degree programmes by monitoring and approving matters
33
with respect to individual staff and students, on the basis of recommendations from
Research Institutes:
With respect to individual staff
• Approval of supervisors and mentors (see Annex B6).
With respect to individual students
• Progression for doctoral study
• Extensions to maximum date for submission
• Changes to the mode of attendance
• Applications for leave of absence
• Withdrawal of students for not maintaining good academic standing
• Approval of examiners and chair for specific thesis (see Annex B7)
• Progression to continuation
• Approval of resubmission statements
• Considering any other matter about the progress of individual students
referred to it by Research Institutes.
5.3.3
In addition, when considering examiners’ reports, the Research Degrees Committee
will identify where there may be any cause for concern in the quality of the support
provided to research degree candidates, and will take this up with Research
Institutes.
5.3.4
The Research Degrees Committee makes an annual report to the University
Postgraduate Research Committee, setting out statistics of recommendations made
during the year and of the number of awards made, and highlighting any issues
discussed by Research Degrees Committee.
34
SECTION 6: Student Liaison, Feedback & Complaints
•
•
•
6.1
Student liaison and representation
Feedback and evaluation
Complaints.
Student liaison and representation
6.1.1
All Research Institutes should have mechanisms for ensuring research students can
participate in discussions and bring forward concerns about facilities and resources
available to them, including the research training programme, and any other matters
which affect their progress or welfare, either individually or collectively.
6.1.2
The University has a Research Students’ Executive Liaison Committee, chaired by
the Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise, which meets several times
during the year to discuss issues of interest and relevance to research students. All
Research Institutes are invited to send student representatives to the meetings.
6.1.3
Both the Keele Postgraduate Association (KPA) and the Students’ Union offer
representation for postgraduate students. KPA and KeeleSU officers sit on major
University committees such as Council, Senate, University Learning and Teaching
Committee and the University Postgraduate Research Committee. The KPA has a
committee of postgraduate students and KeeleSU has a committee of all types of
students (including a specific post for Postgraduate representation). For either
committee, research students can obtain a place by standing in the elections (which
normally occur in March each year).
6.2
Feedback and evaluation
See 5.2.3 above relating to the University Postgraduate Research Committee’s
responsibility.
6.3
Complaints
Please refer to Regulation 26
6.3.1
A (student) complaint is the expression of a specific concern about the provision by
the University of a service, either academic or non-academic.
6.3.2
The University’s Student complaints procedures are described in Regulation 26,
available at http://www.keele.ac.uk/regulations/ . The University has a four stage
(formal) procedure but every attempt should be made to resolve issues on an
informal basis in the first instance, without recourse to a formal procedure.
6.3.3. All Postgraduate Committees should have clearly articulated procedures for handling
problems and complaints on an informal basis, including complaints about
supervision or adequacy of facilities. Informal mechanisms may involve the Director
of Postgraduate Research or other senior member of the Research Institute, or
identified staff outside the Research Institute, for example the Dean of the Faculty or
members of the Student Conduct Office (Directorate of Planning and Academic
Administration).
6.3.4
No formal complaint will be considered unless students have exhausted informal
mechanisms for resolving their problems. Once a formal complaint is initialised, it will
move through the stages described in Regulation 26.
35
6.3.5
The senior officer appointed to deal with complaints is the Pro-Vice Chancellor for
Education and Student Experience.
6.3.6
At any stage (informal or formal) a student may seek the assistance of the Pro ViceChancellor for Research and Enterprise in dealing with their problem or in presenting
their case. Additionally a student may wish to speak to the Independent Advice Unit
in the Students’ Union who can offer free independent impartial advice and
representation.
36
Annex A1: University criteria for making research degree awards at
doctoral and masters level
Keele University wishes to ensure that its awards are made at the recognisable national
standard, and subscribes to the descriptions of learning outcomes required at doctoral and
masters level as set out by the Quality Assurance Agency in August 2008 (The framework for
higher education qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, now incorporated as
part of Chapter 1 of the Quality Code). Examiners should use the following criteria when
deciding whether candidates for research degrees have met the requirements for an award.
Doctoral level
D1
For an award to be made at Doctoral level (PhD, EdD, DBA, DM, MD, DPsych,
DPharm, DSW), students must achieve the required learning outcomes:
Doctorates are awarded to students who have demonstrated:
d) the creation and interpretation of new knowledge, through original research, or
other advanced scholarship, of a quality to satisfy peer review, extend the
forefront of the discipline, and merit publication;
e) a systematic acquisition and understanding of a substantial body of knowledge
which is at the forefront of an academic discipline or area of professional practice;
f) the general ability to conceptualise, design and implement a project for the
generation of new knowledge, applications or understanding at the forefront of the
discipline, and to adjust the project design in the light of unforeseen problems;
g) a detailed understanding of applicable techniques for research and advanced
academic enquiry.
D2
The thesis shall be no longer than 100,000 words (to include main text and footnotes,
but not references and appendices). Although there is no lower word limit for thesis length,
the thesis must be long enough to explore the subject in sufficient depth and breadth to fulfil
the requirements for the degree. Clarity and succinctness of expression is valued. The
literary style and presentation of the thesis should be satisfactory. The candidate will be
required to satisfy the Senate that it affords evidence of originality, shown either by the
discovery of new facts or by the exercise of independent critical power.
D3
Musical composition
A candidate in musical composition is required to submit a folio of original compositions, in
the form of scores or, in the case of electronic music, recordings (or equivalent) on
appropriate media. A written introduction is also required, which covers all the works
submitted, giving background information as well as details relating to aesthetic and technical
concerns.
Where part of a candidate's research has included the production of original software or
other tools which have assisted the realisation of the portfolio then these may also form part
of the submission. Alternatively, and particularly where the compositions or other musical
examples are mainly illustrative of the capability of such tools, then the candidate should
submit under regulation D1. Wherever possible, the appropriate submission pathway should
be determined at the outset with the supervisor.
For submissions consisting solely of musical compositions the following guidelines will apply:
•
A folio should either consist of several compositions, of which at least three
shall be considered substantial by the examiners by virtue of content (e.g. in
37
•
D4
terms of scale, duration, original techniques or use of authored software
tools) OR a single large-scale work such as an opera.
In musical composition a candidate will be required to satisfy the Senate that
the submission shows clear evidence of creative ability and academic
competence, and represents an original and significant contribution to the art
of music. Also, that instruments and voices are written for within their
capabilities, and that performing instructions and layout are accurate in detail.
Visual arts
A candidate wishing to combine academic and creative research may, instead of a thesis,
submit all three of the following:
e) a substantial body of creative work which has been documented and
recorded by means appropriate for the purposes of examination and eventual
deposit in the University Library
f)
an accompanying thesis of no more than 50,000 words showing clear
evidence of academic competence, an awareness of the current critical
context in which the creative work has been produced and an original
contribution to research into the relationship between history and/or theory
and practice
g) a selection of work, referred to under (a) suitable for exhibition.
D5
Professional and taught doctorates
Professional and other taught doctorates will be required to have Programme Regulations
which set out the formal structure of the course including cohort work and research training,
and any forms of interim and summative assessment, as well as any additional entry
requirements.
The thesis for a professional or taught doctorate will be no longer than 60,000 words (to
include main text and footnotes, but not references and appendices). Although there is no
lower word limit for thesis length, the thesis must be long enough to explore the subject in
sufficient depth and breadth to fulfil the requirements for the degree. Clarity and
succinctness of expression is valued. Additionally candidates may be required to be formally
assessed (through in-course assessment or written examination or both) on the taught and
group elements of the Programme of Study, as set out in the Programme Regulations.
A candidate shall be required to satisfy the Senate of competence in independent work,
professional activity or experimentation, of understanding of the appropriate techniques, and
of competence in making critical use of published work and source materials. The thesis
shall be a major contribution to the creation and interpretation of new knowledge.
D6
Doctoral degree by published work
A PhD degree by published work falls under University Regulation 3, and is mostly beyond
the scope of the Code of Practice in so far as it deals with supervision.
Candidates for the degree of PhD by Publication shall be required to meet the same
standards of award as candidates for the PhD by supervision, as set out in this Annex.
The candidate must submit to the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR
activities) three copies of a portfolio which shall include the following:
38
•
•
•
•
•
a title page setting out the candidate's name, approved title of the submission,
and award for which the submission is made
details of the candidate's qualifications
a critical commentary on the submission which comprises a review of the
contribution the work makes to the academic field in question (not exceeding
10,000 words)
a list of the publications submitted in the order submitted
copies of all the relevant published material, appropriately ordered.
The examiners will examine the work submitted, write independent reports, and conduct an
oral examination, in a way similar to research degrees by supervision. They will make a
recommendation to Research Degrees Committee who, after consideration, shall make a
recommendation to Senate.
The requirement for an oral examination will be at the discretion of the examiners, with a
presumption in favour. Any examiners wishing to waive the oral examination will need to
justify it and obtain the agreement of the Research Degrees Committee.
Recommendations available to examiners of research degrees are set out in Regulation 2D
(11.3), except that for degrees by published research only recommendations 1, 2, 6 and 7
are available (see Annex A2). No resubmissions will be permitted, and any minor revisions
may relate only to the critical commentary.
Masters level
M1
For an award to be made at Masters level (MPhil) students must achieve the required
learning outcomes:
Masters degrees are awarded to students who have demonstrated:
h) a systematic understanding of knowledge, and a critical awareness of current
problems and/or new insights, much of which is at, or informed by, the forefront of
their academic discipline, field of study, or area of professional practice
i) a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to their own research or
advanced scholarship
j) originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding
of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and
interpret knowledge in the discipline
k) conceptual understanding that enables the student:
•
to evaluate critically current research and advanced scholarship in the
discipline; and
•
to evaluate methodologies and develop critiques of them and, where
appropriate, to propose new hypotheses.
M2
The thesis shall be no longer than 60,000 words (to include main text and footnotes,
but not references and appendices). Although there is no lower word limit for thesis length,
the thesis must be long enough to explore the subject in sufficient depth and breadth to fulfil
the requirements for the degree. Clarity and succinctness of expression is valued. The
literary style and presentation of the thesis should be satisfactory. The candidate will be
required to satisfy the Senate of competence in independent work or experimentation, of
understanding of the appropriate techniques, and of competence in making critical use of
published work and source materials. The thesis shall normally consist of a critical review of
the field of research together with some new results but may, if approved by the Senate, take
the form of a critical review only.
39
M3
Musical composition
A candidate in musical composition is required to submit a folio of original compositions, in
the form of scores, or, in the case of electronic music, recordings (or equivalent) on
appropriate media. A written introduction is also required, which covers all the works
submitted, giving background information as well as details relating to aesthetic and technical
concerns.
Where part of a candidate's research has included the production of original software or
other tools which have assisted the realisation of the portfolio then these may also form part
of the submission. Alternatively, and particularly where the compositions or other musical
examples are mainly illustrative of the capability of such tools, then the candidate should
submit under regulation M1. Wherever possible, the appropriate submission pathway should
be determined at the outset with the supervisor.
For submissions consisting solely of musical compositions the following guidelines will apply:
The submission should either consist of up to three contrasted pieces of music of moderate
substance and/or length or a single extended work. In musical composition a candidate will
be required to satisfy the Senate that the submission shows clear evidence of creative ability
and academic competence, and represents an original and significant contribution to the art
of music. Also, that instruments and voices are written for within their capabilities, and that
performing instructions and layout are accurate in detail.
M4
Visual arts
Instead of a thesis, candidates may submit all three of the following:
d) a body of creative work which has been documented and recorded by means
appropriate for the purposes of examination and eventual deposit in the
University Library
e) an accompanying thesis of no more than 30,000 words showing clear
evidence of academic competence and awareness of the current critical
context in which the creative work has been produced
f)
a selection of work referred to under (a) suitable for exhibition.
The proposed submission must be approved at the start of the course by the Director of the
relevant Research Institute.
40
Annex A2: Recommendations available to examiners of research
degrees
There are seven possible recommendations available to examiners of a research degree
thesis. Some of the recommendations may not be available for all candidates, as indicated
below.
Recommendation 1
The student be awarded the degree for which he or she
has made a submission.
Guidance
This is appropriate if the thesis is acceptable and the student
satisfies the examiners in all other parts of the examination.
Recommendation 2
The student be awarded the degree for which he or she
has made a submission once revisions have been made to
the thesis to the satisfaction of the examiner(s) named.
Guidance
Minor revisions is the appropriate recommendation where the
thesis is sound and virtually complete in terms of its aims,
methods, results, interpretation and conclusions, but has minor
errors, or is poorly assembled or presented.
The required revisions fall typically within the following
categories and should not require re-working or reinterpretation of the intellectual content of the thesis:
•
Typographical errors
•
Grammatical errors
•
Checking and correcting references
•
Presentation of bibliographical data
•
Improving aspects of figures (e.g. labelling, quality of
reproduction)
•
Minor corrections of fact
•
Minor additional material
•
Minor revisions to interpretation of data, results,
conclusions
•
Minor reorganisation of material
•
Minor rewriting of the text.
The normal expectation is that minor revisions will be
completed within 3 months.
However, examiners may
recommend a longer period (up to a maximum of 6 months) if
the nature of the revisions or the current circumstances of the
candidate justify it.
Examiners must justify any
recommendation for an extended period.
Recommendation 3
[Only for original submissions, not for re-submissions.]
Although the required standard for the award for which the
student has submitted has not been met, the submission
is of sufficient merit to justify the student being permitted
to re-present the thesis and to submit to a further oral
examination within two calendar years from the date of the
decision at the relevant meeting of Senate.
41
Guidance
Resubmission is the appropriate recommendation where the
thesis is unsound or incomplete in terms of its aims, methods,
results, interpretation or conclusions. Substantial additional
work is required which may lead to a significant change in the
results, interpretation and conclusions.
The required revisions fall typically within the following
categories:
•
Reinterpretation of the data (including background
literature)
•
Collection of new data or additional research to be carried
out
•
Substantial rewriting of large portions of the text
•
Substantial additional material to be incorporated within
the text
•
Substantial revisions to results and conclusions
•
Thorough revision of presentational matters which require
a complete editing.
Following resubmission of the thesis, the oral examination is at
the discretion of the examiners.
Recommendation 4
[Only for doctoral candidates, not for masters candidates.]
The student should be approved for a Masters level award,
not a Doctoral level award.
Guidance
This is appropriate if, after completion of the whole examination
process, the examiners determine that the student has not
reached the standard required for the award of a doctoral
degree nor for re-presentation of the thesis in a revised form,
and that the examiners determine that the student has reached
the standard required for the award of a masters degree,
subject to any minor amendments which may be required.
Recommendation 5
[Only for original submissions by doctoral candidates, not
for re-submissions, nor for masters candidates.]
The required standard for a doctoral level award has not
been met, and the submission is of insufficient merit to
justify the award of a doctoral degree. However, the
student should be permitted to re-present the thesis for
the award of a masters degree, and to submit to a further
oral examination, within two calendar years from the date
of the decision at the relevant meeting of Senate.
Guidance
This is appropriate if after completion of the whole examination
process, the examiners determine that the student has not
reached the standard required for the award of a doctoral
degree nor for re-presentation of the thesis in a revised form for
a doctoral award.
However, the submission, though
unsatisfactory, contains sufficient merit and potential for the
42
examiners to recommend that the student be permitted to represent the thesis in a revised form for a masters award.
Following resubmission of the thesis, the oral examination is at
the discretion of the examiners.
Recommendation 6
The student should not be awarded any degree, nor be
permitted to re-present the thesis, nor submit to any
further examination.
Guidance
This is appropriate if, after completion of the whole examination
process, the examiners determine that the student has not
satisfied the conditions for the award of a research degree and
should not be allowed to re-present the thesis nor to submit to
any further examination.
Recommendation 7
The examiners are unable to come to a joint
recommendation and an additional examiner or examiners
should be appointed whose decision shall resolve the
matter.
Guidance
This is appropriate if, after completion of the whole examination
process, the examiners cannot come to an agreed view about
the appropriate recommendation.
43
Annex A3: Registration mode of attendance
A research student will always have one, and only one, mode of attendance (MOA) at any
one time, though students may change from one MOA to another during the course of their
programmes. Possible MOA options are as follows:
•
•
•
•
Full-time
Part-time
Continuation
Leave of absence.
The level of resources and facilities available to students on each MOA is set out in Annex
D2. The general requirements relating to each of these options is as follows:
Full-time
•
•
•
•
Students make a full-time commitment to their research degrees, which is
normally at a level of about 35 hours a week, 12 months a year, with up to 6
weeks for holidays (details agreed with Research Institutes)
Students may not be employed full-time, though may have some part-time
employment
The requirement is that masters students must complete within two years and
doctoral students must complete within four years. The expectation is that
these completion times will be considerably less (see 3.2.1)
Students pay tuition fees at the full-time level.
Part-time
•
•
•
•
•
•
Students make a part-time commitment to their research degrees, which is
normally at a level of about half that expected for a full-time student
Students may simultaneously be employed full-time or part-time
The requirement is that masters students must complete within four years
and doctoral students must complete within eight years. The expectation is
that these completion times will be considerably less (see 3.2.1)
Transfer to part-time study is normally permitted only if a student becomes
unable to continue studying on a full-time basis because of employment or
other commitments (such as a carer role) for a significant part of the working
week, or due to health problems
Requests to transfer to part-time study are subject to approval by Research
Degrees Committee and by the appropriate Research Council for Research
Council funded students
Students pay tuition fees at the part-time level, which is normally half the fulltime level.
Continuation
• Students are expected to make a level of commitment as agreed with their
Research Institutes, in the light of their circumstances, such that the thesis
can be completed and submitted in the shortest possible time and within the
maximum period of study (see Code of Practice 3.2.1 and regulation 2D (7))
• Students may normally be on continuation MOA for no longer than 12 months
(24 months PT) from the date of approval to change to continuation MOA
• Students pay tuition fees at the continuation fees level, normally 15% of the
full-time level.
44
Leave of absence
• Students are not expected to make any commitment to their research
degrees
• There are no requirements about the use of time during periods of leave of
absence
• Approved periods of leave of absence automatically extend the maximum
period within which a student is required to submit by an equivalent period
• Students pay no tuition fees
• All Research Council funded students are entitled to take 6 months of
maternity leave on full stipend and a further 6 months of unpaid maternity
leave. For part-time students leave payments will be calculated on a pro-rata
basis. For non-Research Council funded students, the stipend payable for the
first 6 months will be that in place at the start of the leave.
45
Annex B1: Submission for a research degree
The student is required to submit a two-part declaration along with their dissertation or thesis.
Part 1 is bound into the dissertation or thesis and is essentially a confirmation that the work is
the student’s own.
Part 2 is supplied loose (not bound into the dissertation or thesis) on submission and is a
series of declarations by (1) the student, (2) the lead supervisor and (3) interested parties
such as the non-academic supervisor if the thesis contains confidential information.
Part 2 is not supplied to the examiners of the degree.
Part 2 section 3 is also important if there is to be an embargo on access to the thesis within
the library.
The two-part declaration can be downloaded at http://www.keele.ac.uk/
46
Annex B2: Format for research institute Personal Development and
Learning Plan
From September 2011, all new students are required to develop and maintain a Personal
Development and Learning Plan (see 1.6.6) instead of the previous two part Learning Plan.
[It is hoped that Research Institutes will also adopt such plans for continuing students as
appropriate.]
Research Institutes are required to develop their own format for the Personal Development
and Learning Plan to be used by their students (see 1.4.3), but as a minimum the Personal
Development and Learning Plan must make clear the minimum RT requirements as set out
in CoP 2.2, and include the following sections. A pro forma is available on the web for
Research Institutes wishing to use or adapt it.
Personal Development and Learning Plan for Postgraduate Research Students
To be discussed with supervisory team and submitted to RI PGR committee within 3 months
of registration. Thereafter to be maintained by the student and made electronically accessible
at all times to the supervisors and the PGR Director.
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Student details
Identification of roles of each member of the supervisory team
Any changes to the supervisory team
Timetable for milestones in the completion of the research degree
Programme of regular review of progress
Record of approved leaves of absence and extensions
Record of approved changes to the mode of attendance
Analysis of student’s learning needs and skills development objectives
Record of changes to analysis of learning needs and skills development
objectives
Details of any compulsory research training to be completed
Details of previous research training and skills development, including any
agreed credit exemption
Record of research training and skills development completed including
reflection on value
Plan and record of research activities including research objectives with
target dates for their achievement
List of proposed thesis chapters including progress towards their completion
Record of supervision meetings
47
Annex B3: Contents of research institute handbooks for research
students
Paragraph 1.4.6 of the Code of Practice sets out in general terms the requirements of
Research Institute Handbooks for Research Students, and specifies that Handbooks are an
integral part of the Code of Practice. This Annex provides a checklist for Research Institutes
of all the sections which must be included as a minimum within Handbooks.
The research environment
• The Research Institute, its research environment and its staff (including
contact list)
• Objectives for postgraduate research education
• The role and membership of any Research Institute committees dealing with
postgraduate issues and allowing for student representation
• Opportunities within the Research Institute for interaction with other research
students
• Admission criteria, particularly those specific to the Research Institute
• Health and safety issues
• Sources of help and advice
• Facilities and resources for research students
• Details of any internal bursary schemes.
Expectations within the discipline
• The expectations of research degree study with respect to the individual
Research Institute and academic discipline (e.g. frequency and nature of
contact with supervisor, academic and professional standards, nature of
research, timetable of requirements of the programme of study, ethical
issues)
• What the student and supervisor should expect from each other, including
frequency and type of contact
• Guidance on avoiding plagiarism or other academic dishonesty (referring also
to university guidance)
• Research training programme – guidance for relevant disciplines.
Research Institute procedures
• Procedures for monitoring student progress, including confirmation of doctoral
progression and progression to continuation mode of attendance
• Constitution of panel for doctoral progression
• Where RIs have specific dates for submission of progress report forms by
supervisors and students (one in Spring and one in Autumn) these should be
specified
• Period during which doctoral progression panels will be convened
• Procedures for handling feedback, problems and complaints within the
Research Institute (informal).
48
Annex B4: Doctoral progression procedures
Section 3.6 of the Code of Practice describes the formal doctoral progression procedures.
This Annex sets out the typical contents of the written report and the typical criteria for
satisfactory progress and continuation to PhD study as well as the constitution of the panel
which should consider each student’s case. Research Institutes may modify these to meet
the particular needs of their disciplines provided details are clearly set out in Research
Institute Handbooks.
Report – Typically the report (up to 5,000 words) will include the following (as appropriate)
and should be accompanied by an updated copy of the Personal Development and Learning
Plan:
• Literature review summary and/or update
• Background and rationale for proposed research
• Research methods to be used
• Acquisition of skills and techniques
• Report on preliminary studies
• Research plan for the next year.
Ethics - All research involving human participants, their tissues, or personal information must
be approved by a recognised research ethics committee before the research can commence.
This includes social science research (e.g. fieldwork-based, interview and questionnaire
studies). For more information about how to obtain the appropriate ethical approval for your
research please access http://www.keele.ac.uk/researchsupport/researchethics/
Criteria – Criteria for satisfactory progress and continuation to PhD study typically include:
• Demonstrated progress in developing the intellectual and cognitive skills
necessary for the satisfactory completion of a doctoral thesis
• Thorough literature review and demonstrated understanding of the context of
the research
• Clearly identified research question or topic
• Appropriate research plan and methodologies
• Acquisition of necessary skills and competences to carry out the research
plan
• Demonstrated an ability to set and keep to realistic deadlines for the
production of work
• Approval, where required, by one of the University’s Ethical Review Panels
(or by a recognised external committee, such as an NHS-REC). Where
approval has not yet been granted, a satisfactory explanation of either why
approval is not required or what plans are in place for obtaining it must be
provided.
No student may pass doctoral progression unless and until he or she has fulfilled the relevant
research training requirements as set out in COP section 2.2.
Panel – The composition of the doctoral progression panel should be given in the RI
Handbook. When determining the composition, RIs should consider the following:
•
•
The Chair should be a member of staff experienced in postgraduate research
education – there may be some value in consistency and some RIs may wish
to have the Director of Postgraduate Research
The panel may not include members of the supervisory team, but they could
be present as observers and only with agreement of the student and other
panel members.
49
Annex B5: Required sections for progress monitoring forms
(Including grading scale relating to student progress)
Paragraph 3.5 of the Code of Practice requires Research Institutes to devise their own 6monthly progress monitoring forms. With the introduction of Personal Development and
Learning Plans, progress monitoring forms are no longer required to include sections
outlining the activities undertaken by students. Instead, Instead, Postgraduate Committees
may request that the student submit their Personal Development and Learning Plan to be
considered alongside the Progress Monitoring Forms.
There are two separate Progress Monitoring Forms, one completed by the Lead Supervisor
and one completed by the Student, each submitted separately to the Postgraduate
Committee (with a copy to the other for information – Lead Supervisor or Student). The two
parts should include at least the following sections. Pro formas covering these two reports
are available on the web for Research Institutes wishing to use or adapt them.
Lead Supervisor’s report on progress
[Not to repeat information in the Personal Development and Learning Plan]
1
Comments on the student’s progress on the research project and their success in
meeting research objectives
2
Comments on the student’s overall progress and standard of work
3
Comments on student’s general progress and record in keeping to the agreed
timescales
4
Recommended overall grade with reference to the following scale:
A excellent, B good, C satisfactory, D poor, E unsatisfactory
Postgraduate Committees must choose one clear grade.
The grade should be determined by reference to the Personal Development and
Learning Plan and to section 3.3 of the Code of Practice (Requirement to remain in
good academic standing), and should take into account both the adequacy and
standard of work, and the level of active study, evaluated in accordance with the
student’s mode of attendance. See paragraph 3.3.5 (b) of the Code of Practice for
details of the implications for a student of receiving a grade E (unsatisfactory).
5
Any action recommended, and by whom.
Student’s report on progress
[Not to repeat information in the Personal Development and Learning Plan]
1
Comments on adequacy of progress on the research project
2
Comments on whether you are keeping to the agreed timescales and, if not, give
reasons and suggestions for improvement
3
Comments on progress with thesis writing if appropriate
50
4
Comments on your progress with the Personal Development and Learning Plan
5
Comment on any problems encountered with access to supervision or facilities or the
quality of these.
51
Annex B6: Approval of supervisors and mentors
This Annex sets out the approval process for anyone who is to be a member of a supervisory
team and for approval of mentors to supervisors.
1
The University considers that the quality of the educational experience for research
students is to a large extent determined by the quality of the supervision which they
receive, and consequently places a very high priority on ensuring that supervisors are
able to carry out their role effectively.
2
Academic staff (including honorary clinical staff) must undergo a formal process of
approval by the Research Degrees Committee in order to be able to supervise
research students.
3
In order to become Approved Supervisors, academic staff will normally need to fulfil
the following conditions:
• Already have a higher degree by research
• Be active in research as evidenced by recent publications and / or research
grants
• Hold an academic post at the University
• Have undertaken supervisor training, or be able to demonstrate a track record
of successful supervision
• Have undertaken research governance training or otherwise demonstrate that
they understand the implications of research governance
• Have taken the Lead Supervisor role (as an Associate Supervisor at Keele, or
as Associate or Approved Supervisor elsewhere) and supervised to
successful completion one or more candidates at PhD level.
4
Staff who can fulfil the first three conditions, but have little or no experience of
supervision, may be approved initially as Associate Supervisors.
Associate
Supervisors will be allowed to supervise higher degrees (including as Lead
Supervisor) provided:
• They undertake supervisor training
• They undertake research governance training, or otherwise demonstrate that
they understand the implications of research governance
• They are allocated a Mentor, who will provide guidance and mentoring to the
Associate Supervisor.
5
Mentors to Associate Supervisors will be Approved Supervisors with several years’
experience of successful supervision.
In putting forward a case to be a mentor, the individual, supported by a case made by
the Director of Postgraduate Research for the Research Institute of which they are a
member, will need to demonstrate a history of successful supervision. Additional
relevant experience might include participation in supervisor training, engagement
with issues of research governance and a management or development role in
postgraduate research education.
6
Postgraduate Committees will allocate Mentors to Associate Supervisors at the same
time as they put forward Associate Supervisors for approval. Mentors do not need to
be in the same subject area as the Associate Supervisor, though if possible a Mentor
should be in a cognate discipline.
52
7
Research Institutes will raise any concerns about supervisory performance with the
Research Degrees Committee. Where the performance of Approved or Associate
Supervisors gives cause for concern, the Research Degrees Committee will review
whether such approval should be allowed to continue and, if so, on what terms or
conditions.
53
Annex B7: Approval of examiners and chair of oral examination
This Annex sets out the procedures for the approval of internal and external examiners, and
of the Independent Chair.
Nomination of examiners
1
The examiners are nominated by the student’s Postgraduate Committee to the
Research Degrees Committee, which approves the appointments on behalf of
Senate.
2
The thesis is referred to a minimum of two examiners, normally one internal and one
external. In no circumstances will a member of the candidate’s Supervisory team be
an examiner. A second external examiner will be appointed instead of an internal
examiner in the following circumstances:
• If the candidate is a member of the academic staff of Keele University
• If no appropriate internal examiner can be found
• Any other circumstances which the Research Degrees Committee considers
would warrant a second external examiner (possibly in addition to an internal
examiner).
Exceptionally there may be a third examiner.
3
When nominating examiners for research degrees, Postgraduate Committees should
take account of the following criteria used by the Research Degrees Committee:
• Examiners are expected to be experts in the field of knowledge covered by
the research thesis being examined, and have an established reputation for
research and scholarship.
• Examiners will normally hold a higher degree of at least the level for which
they are to be nominated examiner.
• Examiners will normally hold a post of senior lecturer or above (though other
individuals may be nominated provided information and justification is
provided).
•
• The combined experience of the examiners must include both examining and
supervision of research theses of the level to be examined either at Keele or
elsewhere, with each examiner being experienced in at least one of these
areas.
• Examiners must not be collaborators in the research, and any links between
the candidate and the proposed examiners (particularly in relation to research
collaboration) must be declared when making nominations. Examiners will
not be approved if the extent of collaboration is such that a joint publication
might result from the work. The normal exchange which might, for instance,
take place during normal working contact such as in a laboratory or
departmental discussion would not constitute collaboration in this context. If
there is any doubt about the level of collaboration, the recommendation of
examiner will not be approved.
• Examiners should not be nominated if their work is the focus of the
candidate’s research project.
4
The Lead supervisor and student will be invited by the Postgraduate Committee to
discuss possible examiners and Postgraduate Committee will then make
54
recommendations to Research Degrees Committee. The Lead supervisor and
candidate will thereafter be informed of the names of the approved examiners.
5
All examiners, when confirming their willingness to so act, will be required to confirm
also that they have read and understood the sections of the Code of Practice which
relate to the examination of a research thesis, and will comply with its provisions.
Nomination and Allocation of Chair of oral examination.
6
Each oral examination will have an Independent Chair, who manages the conduct of
the oral examination and who will take no part in the examination itself.
An Independent Chair will be a member of Keele academic staff. It is a condition of
full Research Institute Membership that full RI members identified by their RI as
potential Independent viva chairs put themselves forward for nomination as an
Independent Chair, undertake training as appropriate, and subsequently make
themselves generally available to chair vivas.
Independent Chairs are nominated by the student’s Postgraduate Committee to the
Research Degrees Committee, which approves the appointments on behalf of
Senate. The Records & Exams Officer for Postgraduate Research Students will
maintain a list of approved Independent Chairs who will be allocated, subject to
confirmation by Research Degrees Committee, by the student’s Postgraduate
Committee. The Independent Chair will normally be from the same Research
Institute as the student, but Postgraduate Committees may approach approved
Independent Chairs from other Research Institutes.
In exceptional circumstances the Research Degrees Committee reserves the right to
allocate the Chair for a particular oral examination. Directors of Postgraduate
Research may not act as Independent Chairs.
The normal expectation is that an Independent Chair will have an established
reputation for research and scholarship and experience or training in the research
degree examination process.
55
Annex B8: Oral examination procedures
All research students, whether doctoral or masters students, will be required to take part in
an oral examination (also known as ‘viva’ or ‘viva voce’). This Annex sets out the procedures
for the conduct of the oral examination and suggests ways in which participants should
prepare for it.
Aims and objectives of the oral examination
1
The oral examination is an integral part of the examination process, and so its aim is
to evaluate whether the student has met the standards for the award. (These
standards are set out in Annex A1.)
2
Within the examination process, the oral examination has the following objectives:
•
•
•
to confirm or revise the examiner’s initial views about the standard of the
student’s research, based on the thesis
to identify and discuss any amendments to the thesis which may be required
to meet the standard for the award
to determine as far as possible whether the Part 1 Declaration made by the
student on submission of the thesis is true.
3
These objectives will be achieved through the examiners discussing the research and
the thesis with the student, to gain clarification, probe background knowledge, and
assure themselves of the student’s full understanding of the relevant issues. In
particular the examiners may wish to elicit information on the following issues:
• explanation of the structure of the thesis
• justification for the inclusion or exclusion of material
• explanation for and justification of the use of particular research methods and
techniques
• defence of the originality of the thesis, and how it relates to the work of others
• clarification of any points of ambiguity within the thesis
• justification for the conceptual approach taken in the thesis
• the depth of knowledge of the contextual background to the subject of the
thesis.
4
While it is recognised that apparently minor errors may conceal more fundamental
problems, in general the purpose of the oral examination is not to identify and
question the candidate on minor errors or amendments. Examiners should normally
present to the student a list of such amendments required at the end of the
examination, and incorporate them into Part II of the examiners’ report.
5
The final recommendation will be made on the basis of the total examination process
with the examiners having formed a view about whether the student has achieved the
standards required for the award. If amendments to the thesis are required to reflect
their judgement about the student’s achievements, this should be reflected in the
recommendation made, and guidance about revisions given in Part II of the
examiners’ reports.
6
Note: Where research programmes approved by Senate incorporate a taught or
professional element students may, in addition, be required to complete and pass an
approved course of study and assessment, before the final award can be made.
56
Preparing for the oral examination – examiners
7
Organisation of oral examination: The arrangements for the oral examination will be
made through the Research Institutes. The organiser of the viva, who is normally the
internal examiner or the Independent Chair, must ensure that all parties (both
examiners, Independent Chair and student) are included in the process and are
involved in the decision relating to the date, time and place of the viva. The organiser
must then inform both the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR
activities) and the RI PGR Director of the agreed date, time and location of the viva.
If any additional facilities are needed for the examination these must be identified by
the examiners in advance and organised through the Research Institute.
8
Planning the examination: The Independent Chair should arrange to meet (or
otherwise communicate with) the examiners, prior to the oral examination, to discuss
how they will conduct the examination within the guidelines outlined in this annex. In
particular they will consider which key issues they wish to address and how they will
organise the discussion.
9
Notice of additional requirements: In the majority of subject disciplines the
examination will normally take the form of oral discussion only. In cases where the
examiners wish to request a presentation or demonstration by the candidate the
examiners must notify the Independent Chair of their requirements and the student
must be notified by the Independent Chair of such a request at least two weeks in
advance of the oral examination, together with a statement about the intended
purpose.
Preparing for the oral examination – students
10
It is desirable that students remain engaged with their research material during the
months prior to the oral examination by, for example, re-reading their written
submission, giving talks on their research, or preparing material for publication, as
appropriate. Students should also continue reading new relevant material as it is
published.
11
Students should ensure that they know their thesis thoroughly, and have a clear
understanding of, and can articulate briefly, the key points which are important and
new in the research. They should be able to respond to questions which address the
issues listed above under 3.
12
Students should ensure that they have read and understood this guidance on the
examination process.
13
Students should preferably have undertaken some form of training or practice in the
oral examination, such as the session provided in the University’s Research Training
programme, and a mock viva.
14
Students must not communicate directly with the examiners about the thesis or its
assessment (see Annex D3).
Conduct of the oral examination
15
The oral examination of the student will be carried out by both (or all) examiners, with
the Independent Chair governing the conduct of the examination. The normal
expectation is that no other persons will be present. However, if all parties agree,
57
Supervisors may be present as observers, and may answer questions directly
addressed to them by the examiners in terms of background and contextual
information. Where Supervisors are not present it is expected they will be available
for consultation if the examiners wish.
16
It is the role of the Independent Chair to ensure that the appropriate tone and
environment are created and maintained. The oral examination should be conducted
in a non-intimidating way, reassuring the students, putting them at their ease, and
minimising the inevitable stress of the occasion. Students should be treated with
respect, courtesy, and understanding.
17
The Independent Chair should ensure, at the outset, that the student understands the
purpose of the oral examination, introduce the examiners, and outline for the student
the way the examination will be conducted. In addition, the Independent Chair should
inform the student that no information about outcomes will be provided until the end
of the examination, and that no conclusions should be drawn about this. The
Independent Chair should refer to this guidance as being the document which
governs the conduct of the oral examination.
18
The oral examination will be in the form of discussion, question and answer. Unless
notified in advance (see 9 above) the examiners may not request any other activity
such as a presentation or demonstration. The Independent Chair should ensure that
questioning is not excessively protracted and keeps to the key purpose of the oral
examination.
19
An oral examination will normally last for at least one hour, and rarely more than two
hours. If it is necessary for the examination to last for more than two hours, the
student will be offered a break.
20
At the end of the oral examination, the Independent Chair will ask the student to leave
the room while the examiners reach a definitive conclusion about the outcome of the
examination process. The decision should be reached as quickly as possible to
minimise unnecessary stress.
The Independent Chair of the oral examination has the responsibility for the conduct
of the oral examination at Keele. Full guidance is available at.
http://www.keele.ac.uk/gradschool/codeofpractice. It must be made clear to the
student that the Research Degrees Committee may not always confirm the
examiners’ recommendations. (Where recommendations do not appear to be fully
justified by the reports they may be referred back to the examiners by Research
Degrees Committee (see also paragraph 5.3.1.)
On completion of the oral examination, examiners should indicate to the student what
amendments and corrections to the thesis are required, if any. They are asked to
return a list of corrections and amendments to the Quality Assurance Officer (with
responsibility for PGR activities) as part of their joint report (Part II), and to provide a
copy of this list to the student. Where the list of corrections is partly or wholly
annotated within the copy of the thesis, the Independent Chair will ensure that these
are returned to the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR activities)
who will then forward such copies to the student.
58
Annex B9: Format for examiners’ reports
1
On submission of the thesis by the candidate, each examiner will be sent a copy of
the thesis together with a request for a report on the thesis.
2
Examiners’ reports will be in two parts, Part I written independently, Part II written
jointly. Part I will be written on consideration of the thesis alone. Part II will be written
after consultation with the other examiner(s) and after the oral examination. In
addition, immediately after the oral examination the examiners will sign a joint
certificate with their recommendation.
3
Part I of the report should be written after consideration of the thesis, and should
include the following:
• a critical synopsis of the thesis
• comments on the standard and originality of the work submitted
• areas to be explored in the oral examination
• any suspicions about academic malpractice, or other doubts about the
veracity of the student’s Part 1 Declaration
• a preliminary recommendation, referring to the standards required for an
award at doctoral and masters level as set out in Annex A1 and the available
recommendations as set out in Annex A2
• grounds upon which the preliminary recommendation is made.
Examiners should feel free to make notes on the thesis as they read it.
4
Part I of the report should be sent to the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility
for PGR activities) at least one week before the oral examination, and no later than
one month after receiving the thesis and request for the report. The Quality
Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR activities) will ensure that a copy of
each report is sent to the other examiner(s) prior to the oral examination. Each report
should be accompanied by a Part I cover sheet which bears the initial
Recommendation and the signature of the Examiner.
5
Part II of the report should be written jointly by the examiners after the oral
examination, and should include the following:
• any supplementary comments arising from discussion between the examiners
and the oral examination, including reasons for any changes of opinion from
those expressed in Part I of the examiners’ reports
• justification for the final recommendation as set out in the joint certificate
signed immediately following the oral examination, referring to the standards
required for an award at doctoral and masters level as set out in Annex A1
• clear reasons for the recommendation, and details of any required
amendments and revisions, so that Research Degrees Committee can be
confident in the appropriateness of the recommendation and the student
understands the reason for the outcome and can take appropriate corrective
action if necessary
• a statement that the examiners are satisfied that the student’s Part 1
Declaration is true or, if not so satisfied, the areas and grounds on which the
examiners have concerns about its veracity.
6
Part II of the report should normally be sent to the Quality Assurance Officer (with
responsibility for PGR activities) within a week of the oral examination, together with
return of the thesis (unless this has already been returned to the candidate at the oral
59
examination). The Part II cover sheet should normally be sent to the Quality
Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR activities) on the day of the viva. It
bears the final Recommendation as well as the signatures of the Examination Panel.
7
All reports must be typed, dated and signed by the examiner.
8
Examiners’ reports are not confidential, and copies will be sent to students and
supervisors on completion of the examination process.
60
Annex B10: Terms and conditions for appointment of graduate
teaching assistantships
Graduate Teaching Assistantships
1.1.
A standard Graduate Teaching Assistantship lasts for three years, and includes
the following (for further terms and conditions):
1.2.
Payment of fees (up to EU level only; international students are eligible, but will
need to cover the difference between EU and international fees).
1.3.
A stipend at standard RCUK level (currently £13,590), of which a maximum of
£2,052 will be remuneration for teaching.
1.4.
An agreed (by School in consultation with lead supervisor) programme of
teaching (undergraduate and, if appropriate, postgraduate) for each year (no
more than six hours a week of teaching or teaching-related activity, excluding
formal training averaged over the course of each year).
1.5.
A full programme of development, mentorship and support.
1.6.
An expectation of satisfactory performance in both research (evaluated in the
normal way) and teaching; unsatisfactory performance in either to lead to
termination of the Assistantship.
1.7.
An expectation that the programme of research will be completed within normal
time limits.
Other teaching opportunities
2.1
Availability of GTAs is entirely compatible with arrangements whereby some
PGR students undertake, on a sessional basis, less teaching than would be
expected of a student holding a GTA.
2.2
It is not the intention that the reintroduction of GTAs should necessarily lead to
alteration of current practice. If established arrangements are working well,
there is no reason to change them
2.3
Where no framework for doing so currently exists, Schools and RIs are
expected work together to ensure equity and transparency in allocation of
teaching responsibilities to PGRs who do not hold GTAs. Procedures can and
should be light-touch but rigorous.
2.4
PGR students who undertake teaching are currently eligible to take advantage
of formal training offered by the LPDU.
Terms & conditions for the appointment of Graduate Teaching Assistantships
This Annex sets out the terms and conditions which apply to all Graduate Teaching
Assistantships (GTAs), including the following:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Strategic role of GTAs
Funding issues
Recruitment
Roles and responsibilities of students holding GTAs
Training and support for students holding GTAs
61
Strategic role of GTAs
Schools and Research Institutes (RIs) should be encouraged to consider and
articulate the strategic role of GTAs within their overall teaching and research
strategies, including any or all of the following:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Recruitment of high quality research students, giving a competitive edge in the
market, particularly where there is very little external funding for research
students – without being able to fund GTAs there might be no research students
in the discipline
Integral and important part of the research culture within the Research Institute,
contributing to specific research outputs
Valuable resource dedicated to specific research areas within the RI
Essential to the delivery of certain teaching functions such as laboratory
teaching and demonstrating, examples classes, and teaching large cohorts of
undergraduate students
Provide excellent teaching, are well motivated and enthusiastic, contribute ideas
and input from the training programme, and become experts in their field,
providing significant added value over 3 years
Provide continuity, are reliable, under School control, and are more fully
members of the School than PT tutors would be
An important factor in the renewal of the academic community
Funding issues
2.1 All funding for GTAs will come from School/RI funds (or external funds which
have been obtained for the purpose). GTAs may be funded in one of two ways,
either from School/RI budgets or through making a bid in lieu of other staff.
2.2
The funds for a GTA must include both the stipend paid to the GTA-holder and
the relevant tuition fees payable to the university.
2.3
GTA awards are normally for three years. Continuation of GTAs is dependent
on satisfactory progress in research, as measured by established mechanisms,
and on satisfactory performance of teaching duties.
Recruitment
3.1 The selection process for GTAs must be in all respects transparent and
equitable.
3.2
GTA opportunities should be advertised alongside other forms of student
support (full and part studentships etc.), with full details on the website.
3.3
Selection criteria should include both research and teaching potential, including
the necessary social and communication skills. Candidates’ career intentions
should be ascertained at interview.
3.4
Eligibility for a GTA award should be restricted to full-time research students
intending to complete a PhD. If an award is made to a student who is required
to pay overseas fees, the student will normally be required to pay the difference
between the home level and overseas level of fees.
3.5
Further particulars of each GTA post advertised should include a copy of these
guidelines, as well as more specific details of expected duties and the level of
stipend.
62
3.6
Offers of a GTA award will include a contract supplemented by a statement of
duties (Schedule of Work), support arrangements, training requirements, name
of mentor, etc).
Roles and responsibilities of GTA-holders
4.1 GTA-holders are research students who, by virtue of their aptitude, training and
expertise, have been selected to provide teaching and related administrative
support to their academic Schools. In return for this support, the university pays
them an annual stipend and their tuition fees for their research degree. Their
primary purpose is to undertake and complete a research degree.
4.2
All GTA-holders are required to register for, attend and satisfactorily complete
an appropriate training course to support their teaching role.
4.3
When determining the general teaching programme for a GTA-holder, Heads of
Schools should discuss proposals with the student, be aware of the overall load
(teaching and research), and take into account the following guidelines:
a) Teaching should be no more than 6 contact hours a week during semester
time (a maximum of 144 hours a year). With preparation, marking, office
hours, meetings and other teaching-related activity, this should not require
more than 180 hours’ commitment a year.
b) Teaching-related activity is additional to contact hours and unquantified
within the maximum of 180 hours’ commitment. Teaching duties should not
normally be such as to require other than relatively modest amounts of
preparation time.
c) GTA-holders should, over the course of their three years, have the
opportunity to contribute to the delivery of a range of modules appropriate to
their development and to the needs of the School.
d) GTA-holders, through their experience and training, are preparing for an
academic career, and should be given the opportunity to practise a range of
academic teaching activities and levels over the period of their award.
e) Activities appropriate to early stages of the GTA award:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Tutorial teaching of level 1 and level 2 modules
Laboratory classes and demonstrating
Examples classes
Fieldwork
Supervised assessment of level 1 and level 2 modules
Office hours/surgery
Participation in course team meetings
Attendance at School meetings
f) Additional activities appropriate to later stages of the GTA award, after some
training and experience (general teaching training):
• Tutorial teaching of level 3 modules
• Second marker for level 3 modules
63
• Lecturing in area of research expertise
• Some involvement in module design
g) GTA-holders should be treated as a full member of the relevant course team,
and consulted about the course and their students in the same way as a
junior lecturer. This will include attending relevant examiners’ meetings.
Training and support for GTA-holders
5.1 All GTA-holders are required to participate in a relevant training scheme (see
4.2 above), and Schools/RIs must ensure that they are given the time to do so
and the opportunities to fulfil the requirements of the training.
5.2
Ultimate responsibility for management of the teaching undertaken by a GTAholder lies with the Head of School, who may delegate this as appropriate.
5.3
All GTA-holders will be allocated a mentor or teaching supervisor (who will not
normally be the research supervisor). The mentor provides the following support
for the GTA-holder:
• Provides advice on all aspects of teaching, including presentations,
course materials, and organisational matters appropriate to the subject
• Monitors the GTA-holder’s participation in training programmes, ensures
attendance, advises on additional training and discusses progress
• Liaises with research supervisor and ensures that overall load is not
excessive
• Conducts ongoing reviews
• Recommendations concerning continuation
5.4
All teaching and assessment work must be supervised by a member of the
academic staff.
5.5
GTAs are entitled to the same research facilities as all other research students
in the RI. In addition, they should have access to sufficient School resources to
enable them to carry out their teaching duties.
5.6
GTA-holders who are unable to work due to sickness must inform their School
of the reason for absence and its likely duration, as soon as possible, and in
any event within 30 minutes of the GTA-holder’s normal start time.
Consideration should be given by the School, in consultation with the GTAholder, as whether the teaching commitment can be rescheduled to an
alternative time.
64
Annex B11: Ownership and management of intellectual property
1
During the course of a research degree at the University research students will
contribute to the generation of intellectual property e.g. patentable technologies,
design rights, copyright, including copyright in computer code, know-how, etc. As this
Intellectual Property is generated with the benefit of the University environment (this
includes resources, facilities and intellectual capital of the University) in all cases
(subject to 2 below) the University owns the Intellectual Property.
2
The exception to this occurs where students are sponsored by a third party (e.g.
company or charity) where contractually it has been agreed, prior to the start of the
degree, that the sponsor owns the intellectual property arising from the body of
sponsored work.
3
In the event of commercialisation of the intellectual property, the University agrees to
offer the student a share in any financial gain in accordance with the University
Commercialisation Policy. Where appropriate students are required to notify the
University of the existence of any Intellectual Property, through the IP and Innovation
Manager (Research and Enterprise Services), and are required to complete an
Intellectual Property Disclosure form.
4
Students should not disclose commercially important intellectual property unless such
disclosure is covered by a confidentiality agreement, approved by the Research and
Enterprise Services. Students are encouraged to publish their work but where such
publications relate to commercially important intellectual property students must seek
advice from the IP and Innovation Manager (Research and Enterprise Services) prior
to publication.
65
Annex B12: Standard agreement for the provision of supervision
services
(See paragraph 1.6.5. Note that the WHEREAS clauses may be changed in different
circumstances, such as where clinical staff hold honorary contracts.)
AGREEMENT
between
KEELE UNIVERSITY
and
[NAME] (“Supervisor”)
Concerning the provision of supervision services for
[STUDENT] (“Student”)
RESEARCH INSTITUTE FOR [NAME]
Effective Date of Agreement
WHEREAS
•
•
•
The Supervisor has been a member of the Keele staff, but will no longer be
so at the Effective Date, following retirement or resignation.
The Supervisor has been supervising the Student, and the specific
circumstances make it desirable that the Supervisor continues to be involved
in the supervision of the Student after leaving the University.
This Agreement sets out the terms and conditions for the Supervisor to
provide such supervision services to the University in relation to the Student.
1
Period of the Agreement
1.1
This Agreement shall commence on the Effective Date shown above, and shall
continue until the Student submits his or her thesis for examination (or such other
time as is mutually agreed). The Agreement may be extended or renewed for a
further period if the Student is permitted to resubmit his or her thesis.
1.2
The University may terminate the Agreement at any time with immediate effect if the
Supervisor fails to provide supervision services to the satisfaction of the University,
such failure constituting a material breach of the Agreement.
1.3
Either party may terminate the Agreement for any reason by giving one month’s
written notice to the other.
66
2
Supervision Services
2.1
The conduct of research degree programmes at Keele University is governed by the
Code of Practice on Postgraduate Research Degrees (“Code of Practice”). A copy of
the latest version accompanies this Agreement (receipt of which the Supervisor
confirms), and the most up-to-date version is always available on the University’s
website at www.keele.ac.uk/gradschool.
The Supervisor agrees to ensure that he or she is aware of, and follows the
requirements of, the most recent version of the Code of Practice at any time. The
Director of Postgraduate Research will bring to the attention of the Supervisor any
significant amendments which may affect the provision of the supervision services
specified.
2.2
The Supervisor will be directly accountable to the Director of Postgraduate Research
in the Student’s Research Institute for the provision of supervision services.
2.3
In general terms, the Supervisor will be required to perform all those services which
are required of Supervisors under the Code of Practice, including those additional
services set out in the Research Institute’s Postgraduate Research Degree Handbook
(which forms an integral part of the Code of Practice).
This shall include at least the activities listed in Annex D3 of the Code of Practice
(insofar as they are relevant to the stage of progress of the Student). In specific
circumstances, some of these activities may be either unnecessary (because of the
stage of progress of the student) or may be undertaken by University staff members.
2.4
The exact nature of the supervision services as set out in 2.3 above may be
moderated by details set out in the attached Schedule relating to the circumstances
of the specific Student.
2.5
The Supervisor will perform the supervision services personally, and undertakes that
appropriate time will be spent (if appropriate, at the University) on the supervision
services, including the preparation of any documentation, to ensure the timely
completion of work within any set deadlines.
2.6
The Supervisor shall keep detailed records of all things done in relation to the
provision of supervision services, and at the University’s request shall make them
available for inspection and/or provide copies to the University.
3
Remuneration for supervision services
3.1
The University shall pay to the Supervisor a fee of £250 with respect to each 6 month
period of supervision (pro rata) which has been undertaken to the satisfaction of the
University. No variation to this price will be permitted unless the University gives its
consent in writing in advance to any variation.
3.2
If the Supervisor incurs any necessary travel expenses in relation to providing
supervision services, these may be paid in addition to the fee provided this has been
agreed in advance with the University through the relevant Director of Postgraduate
Research.
3.3
Payment will be made at the end of each 6 month period, and is conditional on
receipt of a satisfactory progress report on the Student, or on submission of the
thesis. A satisfactory progress report will be one which is sufficiently detailed to give
67
the Research Institute’s Postgraduate Committee a realistic picture of the progress of
the student during the period covered by the report.
3.4
The Supervisor should submit an invoice, and the payment (fee and any expenses)
will be authorised by the Director of Postgraduate Research in the relevant Research
Institute, to be charged to the Research Institute.
4
Contractual status
4.1
It is the intention of the parties that the Supervisor shall be self-employed and that
nothing in this Agreement shall give rise to a contract of employment between the
parties. During the period of the Agreement the Supervisor may accept and perform
engagements from other organisations which do not impinge upon his or her ability to
provide the supervision services as required by the University.
4.2
The Supervisor bears sole responsibility for the payment of any tax and National
Insurance contributions due with respect to payments made under this Agreement.
Nevertheless, the Supervisor agrees to provide the University Finance Department
with his or her National Insurance number, so that the University can fulfil its
obligations with respect to completing annual returns.
4.3
The construction, performance and validity of this Agreement will be governed by the
laws of England and the parties agree to submit to the jurisdiction of the English
courts.
I agree to the terms and conditions set out in this Agreement and the attached
Schedule.
Signed
______________________________________
(The Supervisor)
Date
_________
Signed
______________________________________
(Director of Postgraduate Research for Research Institute)
Date
_________
Signed
Date
_________
______________________________________
(Head of Human Resources Department)
On behalf of Keele University
Cc:
Director of Postgraduate Research, Research Institute for
Director of Research Institute
68
SCHEDULE TO AGREEMENT FOR SUPERVISION SERVICES
RESEARCH INSTITUTE
SUPERVISOR
STUDENT (reg no)
DIRECTOR OF POSTGRADUATE RESEARCH
EFFECTIVE DATE
1
Details of student registration
Degree programme
Initial registration date
Mode of attendance
Final date for submission (university maximum)
Final date for submission (departmental requirements)
Sponsorship (if any)
2
Tasks still to be completed by the Student prior to thesis submission, as at the
Effective Date:
3
For the purposes of this specific Agreement, the following additions or modifications
to the general requirements set out in 2.3 of the Agreement will apply:
4
The University, the Student and the Director of Postgraduate Research may contact
the Supervisor through any of the following routes:
Address:
Telephone:
Fax:
Email:
5
Student contact details held on the University records system as at the Effective Date
are as follows:
Address:
Telephone:
Fax:
Email:
69
Annex B13: Guidance on research degrees by published works PhD
The University may award research degrees by published work to individuals who have
demonstrated a sustained record of academic publication.
Please note that a student registered on a Keele PhD by Research or Professional Doctorate
at Keele shall not be allowed to transfer to the research degree by published works.
The degrees to which a candidate may proceed under this Regulation are those of PhD
(Doctor of Philosophy).
1
Standards Of Award
1.1
Candidates for the degree of PhD by publication shall be required to meet the same
standards of award as candidates for the PhD by supervision (See Regulation 2D and
Code of Practice Annex A1). The latest version of the Regulations is available on the
University website and the Code of Practice is always available on the Postgraduate
Research webpages.
1.2
The PhD by publication award is based on the submission of a critical overview and
portfolio of evidence containing peer reviewed published work and other outputs.
2
Eligibility
2.1
In order to be eligible to submit for a degree by published work, a candidate must fulfil
at least one of the following criteria:
• be a graduate of this University of at least six years standing
•
hold a Masters Degree of this University of at least five years standing
•
be a graduate of any other University approved for this purpose of at least six
years standing and have been a full-time member of the academic staff of this
University for at least three years
•
be any other person associated with the work of the University whose
qualifications are deemed by the Research Degrees Committee, on behalf of
Senate, to be acceptable.
The University will normally only consider applications in relation to subjects for which
it currently offers supervision for a research degree and where appropriate
supervision is available.
3
Application Procedure (Primae Facie Case)
3.1
To apply for a PhD by Published Works a candidate must, in the first instance, submit
the following to the Director of Planning and Academic Administration:
f) a statement of the intended award
g) a critical commentary, including a précis of the work to be submitted and a
justification for the award, not exceeding 500 words
h) their c.v. including a full list of publications
i) a proposed title.
70
3.2
A student registered on a Keele PhD by research or Professional Doctorate
programme at Keele shall not be allowed to transfer to the research degree by
published works.
3.3
The Director of Planning and Academic Administration will consult with the
appropriate Research Institute to confirm that there is a primae facie case that the
application is appropriate and that appropriate supervision is available prior to
arranging for the Research Degrees Committee to consider the application. The
Research Degrees Committee may take additional advice from within the University
or externally.
3.4
If the Research Degrees Committee determines that a primae facie case exists, the
candidate will be required to make a submission within six calendar months of the
notification of the decision of Research Degrees Committee.
3.5
There will be two external examiners for a PhD by Publication. The title and
examiners will be approved following the same procedures as for PhDs by
supervision and can be found in the Code of Practice.
4
Supervision
4.1
Candidates for a PhD by Published Work will be provided with an appropriate
supervisor by the Research Institute Committee. The supervisor will normally be an
approved supervisor, preferably of mentor status.
4.2
The supervisor will:
j) Guide the candidate in the selection of publications for inclusion in the
submission
k) Guide the candidate as to whether further submissions are needed
l) Support and advise on the critical commentary
m) Provide guidance on the body of work to be submitted.
5
Submission
5.1
The candidate must submit to the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for
PGR activities) three copies of a portfolio which shall include the following:
n) a title page setting out the candidate's name, approved title and award for
which the submission is made
o) details of the candidate’s qualifications
p) a critical commentary on the submission which comprises a review of the
contribution the work makes to the academic field in question (not exceeding
10,000 words)
q) a list of the publications submitted in the order published
r) copies of all the relevant published material, appropriately ordered
s) a full statement on the extent of the contributions to all papers is required
where there are multiple authors (where an academic is submitting work
undertaken by a student particular attention must be paid to the students’
element).
5.2
Guidance on what may be submitted:t) Papers in peer reviewed journals
u) Books, or chapters in books
v) Patents
w) Monographs
x) Other published work
71
y) The publications should normally have been published no more than 10 years
prior to the first date of student registration
z) Work “in press” can be considered as published where there is a Digital
Object Identifier (DOI) or publishing contract
aa) Outputs to be included must not have been used in the submission for
another higher research degree at this or any other University
bb) Electronic publications may be submitted but only with evidence that they will
be publicly available for the foreseeable future in the current form and that
they are of the appropriate quality for submission. Web links for the journal
publishing the paper should be included in the critical commentary to ensure
copyright requirements are covered
cc) The number of publications will depend on the academic discipline and type
of publication, but the submission should normally comprise at least ten
publications.
5.3
The critical commentary, which must be submitted with the publications should
demonstrate the coherence of and rationale for the submitted work. It should be no
longer than 10,000 words excluding the submitted works. As a minimum it should
contain the following:
dd) Autobiographical context for the portfolio of evidence
ee) Chronological description of the submission and the development of the work
ff) An evaluative description of the originality of each output
gg) Demonstration of the original and independent contribution to knowledge and
a rationale to prove that the work submitted equates to PhD standard
hh) A critical review of the overall contribution to the research area which has
been made by the body of work submitted for examination. This could
include any published reviews of the submitted work
ii) A critical reflection on the candidate’s development as a researcher
jj) Conclusions and suggestions for future work.
5.4
The contents of the submission must be in the English language unless specific
permission to the contrary has been granted by Research Degrees Committee.
5.5
The submission must be accompanied by the relevant examination fee (available on
the Postgraduate Research webpages). The copies should be bound in comb
binding where possible.
6
Examination
6.1
The examiners will examine the work submitted; write independent reports following
the guidance in the Code of Practice, and a further joint report agreeing their
recommendation to Research Degrees Committee.
They will make a
recommendation to Research Degrees Committee who, after consideration, shall
make a recommendation to Senate.
6.2
An oral examination is required for all submissions.
6.3
Arrangements for the oral examination are made in the same was for a PhD by
supervision.
6.4
Recommendations available to examiners of research degrees are:
l) the student be awarded the degree for which he/she has made a submission; or
m) the student be awarded the degree for which he/she has made a submission
once revisions to the critical commentary have been made to the satisfaction of
the examiner(s); or
72
h) the student should be not awarded any degree nor be permitted to re-present
the thesis, nor submit to any further examination.
n) the examiners are unable to come to a joint recommendation and an additional
examiner or examiners should be appointed whose decision shall resolve the
matter.
6.5
Research Degrees Committee will communicate the outcome of the examination
process to the candidate and any subsequent instructions prior to approval at Senate.
7
Appeals
7.1
Appeals can only be made following the outcome of the award and will follow the
procedures laid out in Regulation 7.
8
Academic Misconduct
8.1
Any allegation of academic misconduct shall be dealt with in accordance with the
following procedures.
Academic misconduct is most likely to be, but is not
exclusively, collusion, where a piece of work is prepared by more than one student,
including work deriving from a piece of authorised collaborative group-work, and is
presented in whole or in part for assessment as if it were the student’s own work.
8.2
Any such investigation shall be carried out by a panel consisting of a senior member
of the academic staff nominated by the Vice-Chancellor as chair, the Dean or his/her
nominee from the Faculty in which the alleged offence has taken place and one other
Dean or his/her nominee. If the alleged offence has taken place in the Dean's
department, then the Dean shall nominate a senior member of the academic staff
from another department in that Faculty to act on his/her behalf.
73
Annex B14: Guidance on research degrees by published work higher doctorates DLitt, LLD or DSC
The University may award research degrees by published work to individuals who have
demonstrated a record of academic publication and achieved a reputation for academic
excellence in their field.
The degrees to which a candidate may proceed under this Regulation are those of Doctor of
Letters (DLitt), Doctor of Laws (LLD) and Doctor of Science (DSc).
1
Standards Of Award
1.1
Candidates for a higher doctorate (DLitt, LLD, DSc) shall be required to meet a
standard substantially higher than that expected for a PhD. The work submitted
should represent a significant, substantial, original and long-term contribution over a
sustained period to the development of knowledge within a discipline, demonstrating
international recognised excellence and that the candidate is a recognised authority
in the relevant field of study.
2
Eligibility
2.1
In order to be eligible to submit for a degree by published work, a candidate must fulfil
at least one of the following criteria:
a) be a graduate of this University of at least nine years standing
b) hold a Masters Degree of this University of at least eight years standing
c) hold a Doctoral Degree of this University of at least six years standing
d) be a graduate of any other University approved for this purpose of at least
nine years standing and have been a full-time member of the academic staff
of this University for at least three years
e) be any other person associated with the work of the University whose
qualifications are deemed by the Senate to be acceptable.
3
Application Procedure
3.1
In the first instance the candidate should submit the following to the Director of
Planning and Academic Administration:
• a statement of the award intended
• a précis of the work to be submitted, not exceeding 1000 words explaining
the relevance of the works to the advancement of knowledge in the research
area
• a summary list of publications
• a proposed title.
3.2
The Director of Planning and Academic Administration will consult with the
appropriate Research Institute to confirm that there is a prima facie case that the
application is appropriate prior to arranging for Research Degrees Committee to
consider the application. The Research Degrees Committee may take additional
advice from within the University or externally.
3.3
If the Research Degrees Committee determines that a prima facie case exists, the
candidate will be required to make a submission within six calendar months of the
decision of Research Degrees Committee.
74
3.4
The approved title will be confirmed, and the Senate will appoint two external
examiners and an Independent Chair on the recommendation of the Committee. The
candidate will be required to nominate at least six external examiners to their
Research Institute Committee who will propose two of these examiners to Research
Degrees Committee along with an internal Independent Chair. The candidate is
required to declare all links with the examiners they nominate. Research Degrees
Committee reserves the right to consult the candidate.
4
Submission
4.1
The candidate must submit to the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for
PGR activities) Office three copies of a portfolio which shall include the following:
• a title page setting out the candidate's name, approved title of the submission,
and award for which the submission is made
• details of the candidate’s qualifications
• a critical commentary on the submission which comprises a review of the
contribution the work makes to the academic field in question (not exceeding
10,000 words)
• a list of the publications submitted in the order submitted
• copies of all the relevant published material, appropriately ordered
• a full statement on the extent of the contributions to all papers is required
where there are multiple authors (where an academic is submitting work
undertaken by a student particular attention must be paid to the students’
element).
4.2
Guidance on what may be submitted:• Papers in peer reviewed journals
• Books, or chapters in books
• Patents
• Monographs
• Other published work
• Work “in press” can be considered as published where there is a Digital
Object Identifier (DOI) or publishing contract
• Electronic publications may be submitted but only with evidence that they will
be publicly available for the foreseeable future in the current form and that
they are of the appropriate quality for submission. Web links for the journal
publishing the paper should be included in the critical commentary to ensure
copyright requirements are covered.
• The number of outputs will depend on the academic discipline and type of
publication.
4.3
The critical commentary which must be submitted with the publications should
demonstrate the coherence of and rationale for the submitted work. It should be no
longer than 10,000 words excluding the submitted works. As a minimum it should
contain the following:
• Autobiographical context for the portfolio of evidence.
• Chronological description of the submission and the development of the work
• An evaluative description of the originality of each output.
• Demonstration of the original and independent contribution to knowledge and
a rationale to prove that the work submitted equates to the standard of a
higher doctorate
• A critical review of the overall contribution to the research area.
75
4.4
The submission must be accompanied by the relevant examination fee.
5
Examination
5.1
The examiners will examine the work submitted, write independent reports, and may
conduct an oral examination, in a way similar to research degrees by supervision.
They will make a recommendation to Research Degrees Committee who, after
consideration, shall make a recommendation to Senate.
5.2
The requirement for an oral examination will be at the discretion of the examiners with
a presumption against for a higher doctorate submission. Examiners will be required
to make their decision on whether or not to viva clear in their initial reports.
5.3
The examiners will be required to write independent reports evaluating the work
submitted and to subsequently provide a joint recommendation which will be
considered by Research Degrees Committee.
5.4
Recommendations available to examiners of research degrees are
1. the candidate be awarded the degree for which he/she has made a submission;
or
2. the candidate be awarded the degree for which he/she has made a submission
once revisions to the critical commentary have been made to the satisfaction of
the examiner(s); or
6. the candidate should be not awarded any degree nor be permitted to re-present
the thesis, nor submit to any further examination.
7. the examiners are unable to come to a joint recommendation and an additional
examiner or examiners should be appointed whose decision shall resolve the
matter.
5.5
Research Degrees Committee will communicate the outcome of the examination
process to the candidate.
6
Appeals
6.1
Appeals can only be made following the outcome of the award and will follow the
procedures laid out in Regulation 7.
7
Academic Misconduct
7.1
Any allegation of academic misconduct shall be dealt with in accordance with the
following procedures. Academic misconduct is most likely to be, but is not
exclusively, collusion, where a piece of work is prepared by more than one student,
including work deriving from a piece of authorised collaborative group-work, and is
presented in whole or in part for assessment as if it were the student’s own work.
7.2
Any such investigation shall be carried out by a panel consisting of a senior member
of the academic staff nominated by the Vice-Chancellor as chair, the Dean or his/her
nominee from the Faculty in which the alleged offence has taken place and one other
Dean or his/her nominee. If the alleged offence has taken place in the Dean's
department, then the Dean shall nominate a senior member of the academic staff
from another department in that Faculty to act on his/her behalf.
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Annex B15: Joint PhD Programmes with External Partners
1
Background
1.1
This annex covers the generic elements which must be addressed and included in
the development and implementation of collaborative PhD programmes with external
partners.
1.2
While those engaged in the development of joint PhD programmes will be responsible
for the initial proposals, the final proposal must be prepared in conjunction with the
Research and Enterprise office and must include all aspects of a legal agreement
with a partner such as dispute resolution, indemnity, intellectual property rights and
other contractual issues. The agreement must be signed on behalf of Keele by the
Secretary and Registrar.
1.3
While a range of different partnerships models are possible, this Annex is focused
solely on partnership programmes which lead to a Keele degree.
2
Joint PhD programmes
2.1
Where students in a partnership are expecting to receive a Keele degree then they
must be:
• Subject to the Keele Code of Practice for Postgraduate Research Degrees
(COP) except for the variations set out in this Annex
• Subject to a legally binding agreement with the partner institution.
2.2
The following areas, where there is likely to be variation from the COP, must be
covered in any agreement with the partner institution:
• Admissions – admissions standards and eligibility shall be in accordance with
Keele’s admission’s policy, including English language requirements, which
may vary according to subject area
• Enrolment and induction – it is recognised that where students are based
abroad they may not be able to attend induction at Keele. Specific
arrangements must be put in place to ensure that the same level and quality
of induction takes place at the partner institution
• Supervisory arrangements – as a minimum Keele should provide the lead or
second supervisor. Keele would also formally approve supervisors assigned
by partner institutions using normal procedures set out in Annex B6
• Contact with student – the collaboration agreement should state the minimum
number of contacts between the Keele supervisor and the student. While
regular contact may be by e-mail, telephone or video conference, face-to-face
meetings will normally be required at least once a year. The responsibility for
providing funding associated with these meetings must be specified (see
below). The Keele supervisor must keep records of all contact and
communications with the student and supervisor at the partner institution.
The student must keep records in the Personal Development and Learning
plan of all such contact and communication (see COP section 3.3.2 and
Annex B2)
• The nature and extent of visits, in either direction, for face-to-face meetings
between the student and a supervisor or for research on the project, must be
specified along with the source and extent of funding (travel, accommodation,
project costs etc) required for these visits
77
•
•
•
•
•
Research training – research training needs and the organisational units at
Keele or the partner institution which would deliver the training must be
identified in advance. For students based in the partner academic institution,
the training requirements in the COP will need to be addressed, and any
variance agreed, in advance. Options available include remote completion or
exemption for equivalent training
Progress monitoring – all PGRs studying for a Keele degree will follow the
progress monitoring arrangements set out in the COP section 3.5. The Keele
supervisor must work with the supervisor at the partner institution to ensure
that all progress report forms are complete
Academic facilities and resources – where the student is based at Keele,
even for part of the duration of their study, they should expect to be supported
as any other Keele PGR as set out in the COP section 2.1. For students
based in the partner institution academic facilities and resources need to be
separately identified in the agreement and should be equivalent to the
support provided at Keele. Jointly supervised students, regardless of
location, would be registered at Keele and should have a Keele email account
Examination – Given that Keele is the awarding body, jointly supervised PhD
students will be subject to the Keele examinations process as set out in the
COP section 4.2 and Annex B7. Where students are based abroad the oral
examination may take place in the partner institution or at Keele. In
exceptional circumstances the viva could be via video conference (but not
telephone)
Fees – specific fee levels may be set for students on a joint programme and
these should be set out in the agreement. The sharing of the fee income and
other costs should also be specified in the agreement and should reflect the
balance of input of resources from each partner.
78
Annex C: Forms for PGR students
(all forms are available from the Postgraduate Research webpages)
Annex C1:
Submission of thesis for a research degree
Annex C2:
Approval of supervisors and mentors
Annex C3:
Approval of examiners and chair for a research degree
Annex C4:
Doctoral progression
Annex C5:
Pre-submission review
Annex C6:
Progression to continuation mode of attendance
Annex C7:
Application for leave of absence
Annex C8:
Appeals from research degree students
Annex C9:
Progression report form (supervisors and students) pro-formas
Annex C10:
Personal Development and Learning pro-forma
Annex C11: Resubmission report
79
Annex D1: Guidance on avoidance of plagiarism and academic
dishonesty
This Annex gives some guidance on how to avoid academic dishonesty (particularly
plagiarism, falsification of results and collusion), and identifies the regulations which are
applied in suspected cases of academic dishonesty.
Declaration and academic dishonesty
1
When submitting a thesis (or approved alternative) for examination for a higher
degree, students are required to sign a two-part Declaration (see 1.6.4 and Annexes
B1 & C1 of the Code of Practice). The Part 1 Declaration includes a commitment to
having undertaken research in an ethical and appropriate manner.
2
Examiners are required to confirm, as part of the examination process, that they are
satisfied as far as possible that the Part 1 Declaration made by the student is true.
3
It is the students’ responsibility from the outset of their research programmes to
ensure that they fully understand the implications of the Declarations for the conduct
of their research and for the way in which they write it up in the thesis presented for
examination.
4
Academic dishonesty includes plagiarism, falsification of research results, collusion,
cheating in examinations, and any other action by the student which gives a false
impression (intentionally or unintentionally) to an examiner or assessor that what is
put forward for examination or assessment is the student’s own work.
Plagiarism
5
In the course of their research, research students will inevitably draw on a wide range
of previously published material, of which some will directly inform and influence their
own lines of enquiry. It is important that reference to other people’s work is
acknowledged properly while the student’s own research should be related to it
carefully and unambiguously.
Sources of information should always be
acknowledged, both by a footnote and in the bibliography/reference section.
6
This account of plagiarism is adapted from the MLA Handbook for Writers of
Research Papers, ed by Joseph Gibaldi and Walter S Achtert, 2nd edn (New York:
MLA, 1984). The following paragraphs are largely quotations from this source.
Please note that the illustrations given are from literary criticism and anthropology but
the issues are the same in all disciplines. In mathematics and science, for example,
the unacknowledged usage of data constitutes plagiarism even if it is adapted in
presentation. If in doubt, students must check with their supervisors.
7
TO PLAGIARISE IS TO GIVE THE IMPRESSION THAT YOU HAVE WRITTEN OR
THOUGHT SOMETHING THAT YOU HAVE IN FACT BORROWED FROM
SOMEONE ELSE. Plagiarism is the act of using another person's ideas or
expressions in your writing without acknowledging the source. The word comes from
the Latin word plagiarius ('kidnapper'), and Alexander Lindey defines it as 'the false
assumption of authorship: the wrongful act of taking the product of another person's
mind, and presenting it as one's own' (Plagiarism and Originality [New York: Harper,
1952] 2).
80
8
Plagiarism in student writing is often unintentional, as when a school pupil, assigned
to do a report on a certain topic, goes home and copies down, word for word,
everything on the subject in an encyclopaedia. Unfortunately, some students
continue to use such 'research methods' without realising that these practices
constitute plagiarism. Students may certainly use other persons' words and thoughts
in their essays or research papers, but they must acknowledge the authors.
9
The most blatant form of plagiarism is to repeat as your own someone else's
sentences, more or less verbatim. Suppose, for example, that you want to use the
material in the following passage, which appears on page 906 in volume 1 of the
Literary History of the United States:
"The major concerns of Dickinson's poetry early and late, her 'flood subjects',
may be defined as the seasons and nature, death and a problematic afterlife,
the kinds and phases of love, and poetry as the divine art."
If you write the following without any documentation, you have committed plagiarism:
The chief subjects of Emily Dickinson's poetry include nature and the
seasons, death and the afterlife, the various types and stages of love, and
poetry itself as a divine art.
You may present the information if you credit the authors:
Gibson and Williams suggest that the chief subjects of Emily Dickinson's
poetry include nature, death, love and poetry as a divine art (1974, 1, 906)
The sentence and the parenthetical documentation at the end indicate the source,
since the authors' names and the volume and page numbers refer the reader to the
corresponding entry in the bibliography:
Gibson, W.M. and Williams, S.T. 1974. 'Experiment in Poetry: Emily Dickinson
and Sidney Lanier in Literary History of the United States, ed. by Robert E.
Spiller and others, 4th edn, 2 vols, New York: Macmillan, 1, 899-916
10
Other forms of plagiarism include repeating someone else's particularly apt phrase
without appropriate acknowledgment, paraphrasing another person's argument as
your own, and presenting another's line of thinking in the development of an idea as
though it were your own. Two more examples follow:
Original source
This, of course, raises the central question of this paper: What should we be
doing? Research and training in the whole field of restructuring the world as
an 'ecotopia' (eco, from oikos, household; - topia from topos, place, with
implication of 'eutopia' - 'good place') will presumably be the goal. (From E.N.
Anderson, Jnr., 'The Life and Culture of Ecotopia' in Reinventing
Anthropology, ed. by Dell Hymes, New York: Vintage-Random, 1974, 275.)
Plagiarised in student writing
At this point in time humankind should be attempting to create what we might
call an 'ecotopia'.
81
Here, the writer borrowed a specific term ('ecotopia') without acknowledgment.
Plagiarism could be avoided by rewording slightly and inserting appropriate
parenthetical documentation.
At this point in time humankind should be attempting to create what E.N.
Anderson, Jnr (1974) has called an 'ecotopia' (275).
As before, the sentence and the parenthetical documentation in each revision identify
the source of the borrowed material and refer the reader to the full description of the
work in the bibliography at the end of the paper.
Anderson, E.N., Jnr. (1974). 'The Life and Culture of Ecotopia' in Reinventing
Anthropology, ed. by Dell Hymes, New York: Vintage-Random, 264-81
11
If you have any doubt about whether or not you are committing plagiarism, cite your
source or sources.
12
In addition to correctly attributing extracts or ideas of previously published work to the
author(s) students must also ensure that their own personal share in any investigation
is clearly stated, where any collaboration has taken place between the student and
their supervisor or another person.
13
Plagiarism may also take place when one student copies work from another student,
without the knowledge of that student. In this case both students may be suspected of
academic dishonesty and be subject to a disciplinary investigation.
14
Care should be taken to present all data in such a manner that allows no room for
doubt as to the authorship of the research.
Falsification of results
15
Researchers may be tempted to falsify the outcomes or results of research if
experiments or surveys or other research methods produce data which do not confirm
the researcher’s expectations or hopes. Such falsification of results is dishonest.
16
Research needs to be reproducible, by the same or other researchers, to gain
validity, and research students may need to repeat their research activity several
times in order to be confident in the results they have obtained. It is crucial that the
research design is appropriate from the start if results are to be valid.
17
Data collected through research needs to be recorded accurately. Researchers must
use appropriate forms of analysis to identify patterns and correlations, and then seek
explanations for what has actually been found, not for what they wish had been
found. There may be creativity and insight about the implications of the results, but
not about the core data nor about the analysis of that data.
Collusion
18
Collusion is also a form of academic dishonesty. This is similar to plagiarism, but
involves two or more students working together, without the prior authorisation of the
supervisor, to produce the same piece of work, and then attempting to present this
work individually as entirely their own work. Any suspected cases of collusion will be
subject to the regulation governing academic misconduct.
82
Regulatory framework
19
Ordinance IV (6) states that A student found to have cheated in degree
assessments/examinations (including those for research degrees) may by decision of
the Vice-Chancellor be denied a degree and be denied the right to be reexamined/re-assessed. The student will also be liable to other action by the Vice
Chancellor.
20
Any allegation or suspicion (by the examiners or the University) of academic
dishonesty in relation to examined or assessed work will be investigated under
procedures set out in Regulation 8 (12) relating to cheating and other misconduct in
examinations. The investigation and subsequent procedures will in general follow the
normal disciplinary procedures (see Regulation 20).
83
Annex D2: Normal expectations of research institute facilities and
resources for research students
The level of resources available to research students at any time will depend upon their
mode of attendance (see Annex A3). For guidance, the following resources should be
available within all Research Institutes, though there may be minor variations depending on
the needs of specific disciplines. Research Institute Handbooks will set out full details for
each RI.
Full-time
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
supervision as set out in Research Institute Handbooks and agreed between
student and supervisor – an initial rule of thumb should be regular meetings
(somewhere between weekly and monthly), with perhaps an uninterrupted
hour made available on each occasion, even if the full time does not always
need to be used
office space, cabinet or bookshelf, desk and chair
access to PC with Internet connection and necessary software
access to shared printer
reasonable access to telephone for internal and external calls (not overseas)
reasonable use of stationery, postage and fax costs towards inter-library
loans and photocopying (see RI Handbook for more detail)
ability to bid for funds for research travel and conferences.
Part-time
•
same facilities as for full-time, but level of supervision, access and provision
to be negotiated with students to meet their needs and to reflect the reduced
annual time commitment.
Continuation
• minimal supervision, primarily related to reading and commenting on draft
thesis chapters
• access to the library and other facilities
• use of computing facilities in the Research Institute.
Leave of absence
• Students on leave of absence are not entitled to any access to facilities,
resources or supervision.
84
Annex D3: Roles and responsibilities of students and supervisors
Chapter B11: Research degrees of the QAA Quality Code (referred to below) can be
referenced at www.qaa.ac.uk.
It was published in 2012 and replaced Section 1:
Postgraduate research programmes (2004) from the Code of Practice. The Chapter
represents the broadly shared view of those responsible for research degrees about the
systems, policies and procedures that are conducive to an excellent experience for research
students and that support higher education providers in maintaining academic standards for
research degrees.
This Annex gives some additional guidance for students and supervisors. Research Institute
Handbooks should set out any disciplinary differences or more precise guidelines.
Students
1
Written work should be well-presented, and given to supervisors for comment in a
timely fashion. Work should be of an appropriate standard for the degree, and any
concerns expressed by the supervisor or by the Postgraduate Committee should be
taken seriously and acted upon.
2
Where the student experiences any problems, it is the student’s responsibility to
make these known, to the supervisor in the first place, or following Research Institute
procedures. If issues are not raised at the time, they cannot be used later as grounds
for formal appeal.
3
More specifically, students are expected to
• discuss with their supervisor the type of guidance and comment they find
most helpful, and agree a schedule of meetings
• take the initiative in raising problems or difficulties, however elementary they
may seem
• maintain the progress of work in accordance with the stages agreed with the
supervisor, including in particular the presentation of material as required in
sufficient time to allow for comments and discussion before proceeding to the
next stage
• request written feedback from supervisors, particularly where supervisors
express concern with the student’s standard of work
• provide reports as required for consideration by the Postgraduate Committee
• decide when they wish to submit in accordance with the Regulations, taking
informed advice as appropriate.
4
Students must on no account communicate directly with the appointed examiners of
the thesis on any matters related to its content or the assessment process. This
includes any matters relating to revisions to the thesis. If it is felt that communication
with one or more examiners is needed, the student should contact the Quality
Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR activities).
5
Indicator 7 of Chapter B11 of the Quality Code relates to the entitlements and
responsibilities of research students, includes the following guidance, which all
students should follow.
•
Institutions should assure themselves that students are made aware of their
responsibilities at the beginning of their programme.
Students’
85
•
•
•
•
•
•
responsibilities normally include:their own personal and professional
development, including, where possible, recognising when they need help
and seeking it in a timely manner
maintaining regular contact with supervisors (joint responsibility with
supervisors)
preparing adequately for meetings with supervisors
setting and keeping to timetables and deadlines, including planning and
submitting work as and when required and generally maintaining satisfactory
progress with the programme of research
maintaining research records in such a way that they can be accessed and
understood by anyone with a legitimate need to see themraising awareness
of any specific needs or circumstances likely to affect their work
attending any development opportunities (research-related and other) that
have been identified when agreeing their development needs with their
supervisors
being familiar with institutional regulations and policies that affect them,
including those relating to their award, health and safety, intellectual property,
electronic repositories and ethical research guidelines .
Supervisors and supervisory teams
6
The role of the supervisory team will include:
• giving guidance about the nature of research and the standard expected,
about the planning of the research programme, about literature and sources,
attendance at taught classes, about requisite techniques (including arranging
for instruction where necessary), and about the problem of plagiarism
• ensuring they are aware of any external codes of practice or guidance in
relation to research ethics and governance applicable to their fields of
research supervision, complying with such codes as appropriate, and
ensuring students are aware of and comply with such codes as appropriate
• maintaining contact through regular tutorial and seminar meetings, in
accordance with Research Institute policy and in the light of discussion of
arrangements with the student and agreements set out in the Personal
Development and Learning Plan
• being accessible to the student at other appropriate times when he or she
may need advice
• giving detailed advice on the necessary completion dates of successive
stages of the work so that the whole may be submitted within the scheduled
time
• giving advice to the student on whether areas of their work could be
commercially sensitive and so require a confidentiality disclosure agreement
(CDA) or embargo on publishing
• requiring written work as appropriate, and returning such work with
constructive criticism in writing and in reasonable time
• arranging as appropriate for the student to talk about their work to staff at
graduate seminars
• ensuring that the student is made aware of inadequacy of progress or of
standards of work below that expected – all such comments and feedback
must be made in writing to the student.
7
Monitoring student work and training and academic progress will normally be
exercised through such activities as regular meetings with students, recording key
points agreed, written feedback on progress in general and on drafts of thesis
chapters, and regular progress reports monitored by the Postgraduate Committee,
86
including drawing to the attention of the Research Institute in a timely fashion any
issues affecting satisfactory progress of the student.
8
A clear understanding between supervisor and student needs to be established at an
early stage about the supervisor's responsibility in relation to the student's written
submission, and this may change as the project develops and is subject to continued
negotiation. The understanding must cover the nature of guidance or comment the
supervisor will offer, and the proportion of the final submission the supervisor will read
(perhaps the whole), within the general principle that a thesis must be the student's
own work.
9
Indicator 11 of Chapter B11 of the Quality Code, which relates to the responsibilities
of supervisors, includes the following guidance, which all supervisors should follow.
It is important that supervisor(s) and student are fully aware of the extent of one
another’s responsibilities, to enable both to understand the supervisor’s contribution
to supporting the student and where the supervisor’s responsibilities end.
Depending on institutional, sponsor(s) and research council guidance, supervisory
responsibilities may include:
• introducing the research student to the department (or equivalent), its
facilities and procedures, and to other research students and relevant staff
• providing satisfactory guidance and advicemonitoring the progress of the
student’s research programme
• establishing and maintaining regular contact with the student (guided by the
institute’s stated regulations and guidance) being accessible to the research
student to give advice (by whatever means is most suitable given the
student’s location and mode of study) contributing to the assessment of a
student’s development needs
• providing timely, constructive and effective feedback on the student’s work,
including his/her overall progress within the programme
• ensuring that the student is aware of the need to exercise probity and conduct
his/her research according to ethical principles, including intellectual property
rights, and of the implications of research misconduct
• ensuring that the research student is aware of sources of advice, including
careers guidance
• helping research students understand health and safety responsibilities
• providing effective pastoral support and/or referring the student to other
sources of such support, including Student Support and Development
Services staff and others within the student’s academic community
• helping the student to interact with others working in the field of research, for
example, encouraging the student to attend relevant conferences, supporting
him/her in seeking funding for such events; and where appropriate to submit
conference papers and articles to refereed journals
• where appropriate, giving encouragement and guidance to the research
student on the submission of conference papers and articles to refereed
journals
• maintaining the necessary supervisory expertise, including the appropriate
skills, to perform all of the role satisfactorily, supported by relevant continuing
professional development opportunities.
87
Annex D4: Preparation and presentation of a research thesis
This Annex sets out guidance for students about the nature of a thesis, its normal
structure and content, and the formalities of presenting the thesis in terms both of
format and process. There are clearly differences between disciplines in terms of the
emphasis placed on different aspects of a thesis, and you should seek additional
advice from your Research Institute, but there are some common points which you
should take into account. In particular you should note that the following sections
are requirements for all students:
•
•
•
•
format for presentation of a thesis
submitting your thesis for examination
after examination
lodging the thesis in the library and copyright issues.
WRITING THE THESIS SHOULD START VERY EARLY ON IN YOUR RESEARCH
DEGREE PROGRAMME. IT IS NOT SOMETHING TO BE LEFT UNTIL THE END.
Purpose of a thesis
1
First and foremost, the thesis is the document which forms your examination
submission. It is on this basis that examiners will determine whether you have
fulfilled the criteria for the award (see Annex A1). Therefore from the outset you
should ensure that you are familiar with the relevant award criteria, and when writing
your thesis aim to demonstrate that you have fulfilled them.
2
The thesis is also a description of your research project, its definition, purpose,
methods, results and conclusions. It needs to be a self-contained work which places
your project in context and then sets out in a coherent and logical way how and why
you pursued the project in the way you did, what new results or data were obtained,
or how you developed your arguments and theories, and what conclusions you draw
from them. Examiners will look carefully at the methods you have used and whether
they are appropriate to the project. If you have published work from your thesis prior
to submission of the thesis you can include some of the same text in the thesis
provided the thesis as a whole is a self-contained and coherent work. The publication
should be referenced.
3
The thesis (particularly for a doctoral award) should provide evidence of originality.
Originality may be in terms of a previously unexplored field or topic (or aspect), or
may consist in a re-analysis of previous findings or a new interpretation of events.
You will need to demonstrate independent critical thought. If you have collaborated
with anyone else on aspects of your research your own original contribution needs to
be clearly identified. For example, if you have separately published some findings in
a multi-authored publication prior to submission you will need to set out very clearly
your own contribution.
4
You should also place your findings in the context of current research and debates,
and suggest some implications, including identifying further research which may be
useful.
88
Literature search and referencing
5
In most projects, at a very early stage you will need to conduct a literature search in
order to discover what has already been written about your topic, so that you can take
previous findings into account in your own work and not duplicate work already done.
6
From the outset you will need to determine which system you intend to use to keep a
note of your reading. This will need to be in a form which you can access readily
when you wish to reference an item in your thesis, or compile your bibliography.
There are different views about whether you need both a list of references and a
bibliography – some people advocate just a list of references since this should
incorporate all relevant items. Ask your Research Institute for guidance.
7
The University has a site licence for bibliographic software - Refworks. Refworks is
one of the bibliographic services bought by the University Library, who also provide
training and support. Further information is available from the Library website. You
are strongly advised to use Refworks to routinely store details of all publications
referred to during the course of your research.
8
It is essential that in writing your thesis you have a consistent format for referencing.
There are various different systems available, and your Research Institute will advise
you about what is most appropriate or usual in your discipline. However, different
journals also require different referencing styles. One of the advantages of using
bibliographic software is that you can produce bibliographies and references in a
number of different styles, at the click of the mouse. This will help you greatly,
therefore, to have consistent referencing in any document, in a style of your choice.
Structure of a thesis
9
There will be variations between disciplines. However, as a guide, a typical thesis
would have the following structure:
Preliminary pages
• Title page
• Student declaration Part 1 (bound into the thesis)
• Abstract (not exceeding 300 words in accordance with section 8.3.4 of
Regulation 2D)
• Contents page (which can often be generated automatically if set up in word
processing software)
• List of tables and figures (if appropriate)
• Acknowledgements.
Principal chapters
• Articulate the research question or topic, and why it is important or interesting
• Give background about other research in the field, largely as the result of
your literature search
• Set out how you approached the research and justify your choice of research
method
• Describe the research process
• Give your results, or line of argument, as clearly as possible – some detailed
aspects may be in annexes
• Set out your conclusions – this will be one of the most important chapters, the
kernel of what you set out to explore, the evidence of your originality
89
•
Summary of the whole thesis, implications and suggestions for further
research.
Annexes
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
10
References (sometimes these come after the final chapter rather than in an
Annex) – this will be a consolidated list which doubles as the bibliography
Bibliography (some Research Institutes may advise having this as well as the
list of references, though it will normally be redundant)
Detailed tables of results
Questionnaires used
Where relevant, a letter from the approving body confirming that ethical
approval has been given should be bound in the thesis as an Annex
Any other detail which would interrupt the flow of your argument if included in
the main text
If not too long, you could bind in a copy of any paper published arising from
the research, but often this would be repetitive and more normally the paper
would just be referenced.
All chapters and sections should be clearly numbered and titled.
Examiners’ dislikes
11
You should be aware that examiners tend to dislike, or be irritated by, the following:
• Poor linkage between the research question, the methods used and the final
results
• Carelessness
• Minor typing errors
• Inconsistency
• Incomplete references or bibliography
• Diagrams and tables incorrectly (or not) labelled.
Format for presentation of a thesis
[formal requirements which must be complied with]
12
All theses must be typewritten and printed clearly, using the following format:
Paper size
A4 (210mm x 297mm), or the intended close equivalent used on some
printers.
Font size
Font for all text, including footnotes where used, should be no smaller
than 10 point.
Spacing
Double line spacing for main text including quotations, single line
spacing for footnotes.
Margins
40mm left hand side, 15mm right hand side of each page.
Length
Doctoral degrees maximum of 100,000 words, masters degrees
maximum of 60,000 words. There are some variations. See Annex A1
for details. Thesis length includes footnotes but not references or
appendices.
90
Pages
Single sided only.
Numbering
It is recommended that preliminary pages should bear roman numerals
(i, ii, iii, etc). Principal pages must bear arabic numerals (1,2,3 etc)
Footnotes
These may either be footnotes or endnotes, but if footnotes (which
tend to be easier to read) they must appear on the same page as the
textual number. If a numerical referencing system is used, references
and footnotes must be distinguishable or combined.
Where possible maps, plans or diagrams forming part of the thesis must be of the
same size, being reduced or enlarged to conform to A4.
13
If there are special reasons why a thesis should be submitted in a format other than
the above, permission should be sought from the Research Degrees Committee
(RDC) at least three months before submission, supported by a precise statement of
what variation from the norm is proposed. The request must be supported by your
Research Institute’s Postgraduate Committee.
14
Thesis title
The title of the thesis must be approved by the Research Institute’s Postgraduate
Committee before the Committee makes a recommendation to the Research Degrees
Committee (RDC) about examiners for the thesis. It is recommended that this should
take place about 3 months prior to expected submission date (see COP section
4.1.3).
Thesis titles should be no more than 20 words, and should be such as to make clear
to readers the research field and topic of the thesis. In some information retrieval
systems the title may be the only field searched, and you should include key words.
Titles may be divided into two halves, separated by a colon. In this case, the first half
will tend to specify the topic, while the second half will tend to explain the approach
taken. Except for an initial capital, the full title should be in lower case except where
capitals are necessary (for example, generic and specific names of organisms, proper
nouns, etc). Use italics for genus and species names, and foreign language words.
15
Title page
The title page is the first page of the thesis and must include the following details:
• Title of thesis (exactly as approved)
• Author’s name (without qualifications listed)
• Degree for which the thesis has been submitted
• Month and year (of thesis submission for soft bound (pre-examination) and
month and year of Senate approval of the award for hard bound version
lodged with library)
• Keele University.
16
Abstract
The page should be headed Abstract, followed by not more than 300 words
describing the key features of the thesis. Many information retrieval systems will
search abstracts rather than complete works, and you should include key words.
91
Note that Regulation 2D (10.3.4) specifies the requirement to include an abstract of
no more than 300 words.
17
Declaration
When submitting your thesis you are required to sign a two-part Declaration. You
should obtain this in advance from the Postgraduate Research webpages, complete
and sign it (except date of submission) and bind Part 1 into your thesis and supply
Part 2 loose along with your thesis.
Notes Part 1:
i) You are required to state the number of words in the thesis on the Part 1
Declaration.
j) You should be aware of the statements on the Part 1 Declaration form from
the beginning of your research degree programme (see COP section 1.6.4
and Annexes B1 & C1) since they specify that you have conducted your
research in an appropriate way. You need to ensure that this is indeed the
case.
Note for Part 2:
o) You should not rely on being able to get any signatures required for the
document on the day you wish to submit and should therefore plan to have the
document completed prior to submission.
The Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR activities) will complete the
date of submission on the original and each copy when you are ready to submit.
18
Acknowledgements
If the research degree is set within a broader programme of work involving a group of
investigators – particularly if this programme of work predates the candidate’s
registration – the candidate should provide an explicit statement (in an
‘Acknowledgments’ section) of the respective roles of the candidate and these other
individuals in relevant aspects of the work reported in the thesis.
For example, it should make clear, where relevant, the candidate’s role in designing
the study, developing data collection instruments, collecting primary data, analysing
such data, and formulating conclusions from the analysis. Others involved in these
aspects of the research should be named, and their contributions relative to that of
the candidate should be specified (this would not apply to the ordinary supervision
process, only if the supervisor or supervisory team has had greater-than-usual
involvement).
19
Ethics
All research involving human participants, their tissues, or personal information must
be approved by a recognised research ethics committee. This includes social science
research (e.g. fieldwork-based, interview and questionnaire studies). Where relevant
a letter from the approving body confirming that ethical approval has been given
should be bound in the thesis as an Annex.
20
You should check the thesis carefully before presentation. Defects in style of
presentation may lead to your thesis being refused for examination until they are
rectified.
92
Submitting your thesis for examination
[formal requirements which must be complied with]
21
Normally three copies of the thesis will be required, one for each examiner and one
(the top copy) for yourself. However, exceptionally, if there are more than two
examiners an additional copy will be required. A copy of the thesis is not required for
the Independent Chair.
22
Each copy should be bound in a secure plastic ring-binding (also known as combbinding) between card covers . This service can be provided by the Student Union
Print Shop Alternatively, the thesis may be glue (heat) or clamp bound.
23
When you are ready to submit your thesis you should take your two (exceptionally
three) copies of the thesis to the Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for
PGR activities), together with an extra copy of your Declaration forms. The thesis will
be accepted only if the title is exactly the same as the final title approved by your
Research Institute’s Postgraduate Committee.
24
The Quality Assurance Officer (with responsibility for PGR activities) will insert the
date of submission on your Declaration forms and will give you a receipt for your
thesis copies. Copies of the declaration forms will also be sent to your Lead
Supervisor and Director of Postgraduate Research, as confirmation that you have
submitted your thesis.
After examination
[formal requirements which must be complied with]
25
There are various possible outcomes from the examination process. See Annex A2
for details. The actions you need to take with respect to your thesis will depend on
the outcome of the examination.
26
Minor revisions
The most common outcome from the examination process is that students may be
awarded the degree subject to the completion of minor revisions (Recommendation
2). These revisions must be completed and submitted to the Records & Exams
Officer for Postgraduate Research Students within the three month period allowed.
Exceptionally, students are allowed longer than three months, up to a maximum of six
months, to complete minor revisions.
The top copy of the thesis must have the revisions made to it, substituting pages as
necessary. The Records & Exams Officer for Postgraduate Research Students will
communicate the revisions to the relevant examiner(s). The changes should not be
submitted direct to the examiner(s) by the student. If the examiners agree, it may be
possible to submit the revisions to the examiner in an electronic (pdf) format .
Those examiner(s) who are required to certify that the revisions have been made to
their satisfaction must complete and sign a statement to that effect (form from the
Records & Exams Officer for Postgraduate Research Students) and return the form to
the Records & Exams Officer for Postgraduate Research Students
27
Doctoral candidates awarded masters degrees
If you have submitted your thesis for a doctoral degree but been awarded a masters
degree, you need to reflect this in the title page and binding of your final thesis. The
93
binding will need to show the masters award. The title page of the thesis can either
just indicate that a masters degree was awarded, or can indicate that the thesis was
submitted for a doctoral degree but was awarded a masters degree.
28
Resubmission
If the recommendation approved by Senate is that you be permitted to resubmit your
thesis (Recommendation 3), then in effect you go back to the beginning again, taking
particular account of the points raised by the examiners in their reports. The required
revisions may relate to intellectual content, major presentational matters and/or other
matters of substance. You will be required to pay a resubmisison fee before the
resubmitted work can be re-examined. After you have resubmitted the thesis,
examiners will pay particular attention to whether you have addressed satisfactorily
the issues they raised at the first examination. You only have one opportunity to
resubmit a thesis. Note that for the hard bound version lodged with library the year to
be given on the spine and front board, and the month and year given on the title
page, is the date of Senate approval of the award (see 29). For the soft bound (preexamination) version the date on the title page is the Month and year of thesis
resubmission.
29
Binding the thesis
Once you are being recommended for an award, you should prepare your thesis for
lodging in the library. The thesis should be printed on 100gsm (or 120gsm) paper
and then hard bound, with a cloth colour of dark blue (colour code 544). Arbeleve
Buckram binding is recommended.
The Part 1 declaration of your final, completed submission must be bound into the
thesis submitted to the library.
You may also clamp bind the thesis but you should bear in mind that this method may
not be as permanent as the traditional stitched Arbeleve Buckram binding. A clamp
binding service can be provided by the Student Union Print Shop. The Library will
accept a dark blue linen clamp bound copy, as long as it conforms to the presentation
requirements set out below.
Please note: No more than 240 sheets of @100gsm paper can be clamp bound in
one volume, so traditional stitched binding (Arbeleve Buckram) is still the preferred
option for larger theses.
In general, the more urgently you need your thesis bound (48 or 24 hours) the more
expensive it will be.
The title page is the first page of the thesis and must include the following details:
• Title of thesis (exactly as approved)
• Author’s name (without qualifications listed)
• Degree for which the thesis has been submitted
• Month and year (that Senate will approve the award*)
• Keele University.
* Please remember that this date is not the year of submission, which may be
different. The year of award may fall in the following year if submitting in
November or December. If you are in any doubt, please check with the
Records & Exams Officer for Postgraduate Research Students.
94
The bound thesis must indicate (lettered in gold) on the front board
• thesis title (front board only)
• author’s name (full name in the same form as appears on your student
record)
• degree which has been awarded
• year of award (that Senate will approve the award*).
The bound thesis must indicate (lettered in gold) up the spine (reading from bottom to
top, in upper case lettering)
• author’s name
• degree which has been awarded
• year of award (that Senate will approve the award*).
Multi-volume theses must display the volume number, in gold-lettered Arabic
numerals, across the base of the spine and below the thesis title.
A thesis with multiple parts (such as scores, published works, DVDs) should be boxed
together in dark blue cloth and lettered as above.
Although the University requirement is for one bound copy for the Library, most
students have two or three copies bound, one for the library, one for their Research
Institute and one for themselves. Some Research Institutes require a bound copy for
their library, so you should check with your RI.
Electronic deposit of thesis in the library
30
Why does the University require edeposit?
It is now a regulatory requirement (University regulation 2D 10.3.8) that all Keele
postgraduate research students enrolled from September 2011 onwards deposit an
electronic copy of their final approved thesis for uploading to the University’s open
access Research Repository. This is in addition to the required bound paper copy.
The hard copy thesis is the full, final, examined and awarded version and remains the
authoritative copy. Where possible, the electronic version should be the same as the
hard copy, but there will be some exceptions, which this guidance explains.
Research degree candidates who commenced study before September 2011 are
strongly encouraged to edeposit voluntarily.
31
What are the benefits?
Like most universities, Keele has established a Research Repository to capture,
store, index, preserve and redistribute the University’s scholarly research in digital
formats.
Your thesis will be uploaded to the repository, becoming exposed to internet search
engines and harvesters, as well as being made available to EThOS and linked to
Index to Theses, the comprehensive UK thesis listing.
As a result, your research is more readily available, easily searchable and more
visible worldwide. This has potential implications for your career progression and
research success - as your thesis is picked up and cited more widely, so it makes a
greater impact in your subject discipline.
95
32
What changes to do I need to know about?
Online access to theses constitutes publication and requires more careful
consideration of issues related to sensitivity to copyright, confidentiality, Intellectual
Property Rights and co-sponsorship. Before depositing your ethesis, and ideally at
an early stage in your research, you should read the following guidance.
33
Third Party Copyright
Copyright in theses is covered by the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. Third
party copyright is where the rights are owned by others – you may have included
published extracts, quotations, images, maps, tables, diagrams, music scores or
other third party copyright material in your thesis. Third party copyright also includes
extracts from publications that you have authored and use depends upon the
agreement you entered into with the publisher. If you have included unpublished
material, such as manuscripts and photographs, remember that much unpublished
work remains in copyright until 2039.
For the purpose of examination, it has been acceptable to quote from copyrighted
works without seeking permission from the rights holder. However, electronic
availability is a form of publication, and therefore permission must be obtained from
copyright holders before including extensive and significant third party copyright
material in your ethesis.
34
Fair dealing
Under ‘fair dealing’, it is not necessary to seek permission from the copyright holders
where extracts are short and insubstantial and are cited accurately. It is important to
reference correctly to avoid accusations of plagiarism. However, the Copyright
Designs and Patents Act 1988 does not define what constitutes short or insubstantial,
so if in doubt, you should seek permission. Inclusion of images and music extracts in
copyright will certainly require permission. When making a judgement, consider
whether you would be happy for others to copy a similar quantity of your work in such
a way.
35
Contacting copyright holders
When seeking copyright clearance to include ‘substantial’ material from published
books or journals in your thesis, contacting the publisher is usually the best starting
point. Contact addresses can be found on publishers’ websites and the larger
companies usually have Rights and Permissions departments (or search under
‘copyright’ and ‘clearance’). Seeking approval can take time, so don’t leave it until the
last minute. Be aware that images from publications usually have different rights
holders who need to be contacted separately. Where permission has been granted,
remember to include evidence in your full thesis, e.g. ‘Permission to reproduce…has
been granted by…’ You might find the following sample text helpful when contacting
rights holders:
Sample permission letter 1
I am completing a research degree thesis at Keele University and I am contacting you
to request permission to include the following material within the electronic version of
my thesis:
96
[Insert citation details of the original work and a full description of the excerpts and/or
specifics relating to content to be reproduced] [“the Material”]
An electronic version of my thesis will be deposited in Keele University’s Research
Repository. Once available in digital format, access to the thesis will be freely
available via the Web and through the ‘Electronic Thesis Online Service’ (EThOS).
The User of the thesis will be required to agree that they shall only use the thesis for
non-commercial research, private study, criticism, review and news reporting,
illustration for teaching, and/or other educational purposes in electronic or print form.
I would be grateful if you, or the company you represent, could grant me permission
to include the Material in my thesis and to use the Material, as set out above, royalty
free in perpetuity. If you are not the owner of the copyright in this material I would be
most grateful if you would confirm this and advise me who to contact.
Sample permission letter 2
I am the author of [insert full citation details for the work] [“the Work”] which was
published by [insert publisher’s name] in [insert name of publication/s] and which was
assigned to [you or your company] by an agreement dated [insert date].
I would like to include the Work in my research degree thesis, ‘[title of thesis]’. My
thesis will be made available electronically in Keele University’s Research Repository.
Once available in digital format, access to the thesis will be freely available via the
Web and through the ‘Electronic Thesis Online Service’ (EThOS). The User of the
thesis will be required to agree that they shall only use the thesis for non-commercial
research, private study, criticism, review and news reporting, illustration for teaching,
and/or other educational purposes in electronic or print form.
I would be grateful if you, or the company you represent, could grant me permission
to include the Work in my thesis and to use the Work, as set out above, royalty free in
perpetuity.
36
Editing your eThesis
Where approval from a rights holder has not been obtained, or where a publication
fee is being requested and you do not wish to pay this, then the ethesis should not be
made available online, unless you first remove the relevant third party copyright
material from the e-version. Remember, you should not compromise what is included
in your hard copy thesis as this is the authoritative copy.
The thesis deposit agreement gives the option to deposit an abridged electronic
version. Where third party copyright material has been removed from the ethesis,
you should include reference to where this material can be found. On the title page of
an edited ethesis, you should include wording similar to:
‘This electronic version of the thesis has been edited solely to ensure compliance with
copyright legislation and excluded material is referenced in the text. The full, final,
examined and awarded version of the thesis is available for consultation in hard copy
via the University Library’
97
37
Intellectual Property
Where a student or supervisor believes a thesis may contain intellectual property with
potential commercial value, this should be brought to the attention of Research and
Enterprise Services before any disclosure takes place.
If you are seeking to patent an idea, it must not have been published already.
Electronic availability of your thesis constitutes publication, so do seek advice.
You may decide to place a time-limited restriction on access to the hard copy and the
electronic thesis, or to place an embargo on the electronic version only. The duration
of an embargo is most commonly between 2 and 5 years. Please refer to the options
on the thesis deposit agreement.
38
Co-sponsorship
Where a studentship is funded by an external organisation and governed by a formal
contract, in order to prevent a possible breach of contractual obligation, advice should
be sought from Research and Enterprise Services. It might well be decided to place
a time-limited restriction on access to the hard copy and electronic version, or to
restrict access to the ethesis only. Embargoes do not usually exceed 5 years. Please
see the access options on the thesis deposit agreement.
39
Publishing
Many publishers are not concerned about availability of theses in repositories and do
not consider them to be equivalent publications. However, if you are seeking to
publish your research and are concerned that electronic availability of your thesis
could constitute prior publication, do consult your supervisor and contact your
publisher to ask for their policy on etheses. After consultation, it may be decided to
restrict access to both print and electronic versions. In such cases, an embargo
period of between 2 and 5 years is advisable. Access options can be found on the
thesis deposit agreement.
40
Plagiarism
Plagiarism can occur in any medium. By making your thesis available electronically,
it becomes easier to discover whether your work has been plagiarised and
appropriate action can then be taken. As your research becomes widely available, it
can be recognised and acknowledged as your work and appropriately referenced.
Keele’s Research Repository and EThOS both operate an immediate thesis takedown policy, should issues arise.
Lodging your thesis in the Library and licensing use
41
Before your degree can be awarded by Senate, both hard copy and electronic copy of
your thesis must be deposited in the Library, along with your completed thesis deposit
agreement,
available
on
the
Code
of
Practice
website
http://www.keele.ac.uk/gradschool/codeofpractice/ or from the Library Administrator.
If you commenced study prior to September 2011 and are choosing not to deposit an
electronic copy, please be aware that your thesis can still be requested for digitisation
and made available online. The thesis deposit agreement allows you to permit or
restrict electronic access, so please complete with care.
98
The ethesis should be the full and final approved thesis, unless an edited version is
being deposited for reasons relating to copyright. There may be some delay before
your ethesis is uploaded to the Research Repository as we need to check it against
the hard copy and create metadata.
42
Access restrictions
If you are placing an access restriction on your thesis (see guidance on Intellectual
Property, Co-sponsorship and Publishing) you must still deposit a full electronic copy
with the Library for preservation. The ethesis will be accessed by authorised persons
only and uploaded to the Research Repository once the embargo has expired.
43
Format
The ethesis should be deposited as a single PDF on CD, as PDF is a recognised
international standard and will ensure retention of the original layout. The file should
be readable text and not digitised images of the pages of your thesis. Ensure that the
CD is clearly labelled.
Further reading and advice
44
Several books have been written about preparing a research thesis, and you may find
them of interest and help. Some which have been recommended by research
students are listed below.
How to get a PhD – A Handbook for Students and their Supervisors
Phillips and DS Pugh (1994. Buckingham Open University)
The Research Student’s Guide to Success
Buckingham Open University)
Pat Cryer
Estelle M
(3rd edition.
2006.
Managing Information for Research Elizabeth Orna (Open University Press)
Working for a Doctorate: A Guide for the Humanities and Social Sciences N Graves
and V Varma (eds) (1997. Routledge)
How to Write a Thesis Rowena Murray (2002. Open University Press)
The Doctoral Examination Process P Tinkler and C Jackson (2004. Open University
Press)
Authoring a PhD: How to plan, write and finish a doctoral thesis or dissertation
Patrick Dunleavy (2003. Palgrave Macmillan)
The Postgraduate Research Handbook Gina Wisker (2001 Palgrave Macmillan)
45
A number of web sites may be of interest to research students seeking further advice
about how to successfully complete a research degree. Some suggestions are given
below.
www.vitae.ac.uk
www.srhe.ac.uk
99
Annex D5: Joint Statement of the Research Councils’ Skills
Training Requirements
Introduction
The Research Councils play an important role in setting standards and identifying best
practice in research training. This document sets out a joint statement of the skills that
doctoral research students funded by the Research Councils would be expected to develop
during their research training.
These skills may be present on commencement, explicitly taught, or developed during the
course of the research. It is expected that different mechanisms will be used to support
learning as appropriate, including self-direction, supervisor support and mentoring,
departmental support, workshops, conferences, elective training courses, formally assessed
courses and informal opportunities.
The Research Councils would also want to re-emphasise their belief that training in research
skills and techniques is the key element in the development of a research student, and that
PhD students are expected to make a substantial, original contribution to knowledge in their
area, normally leading to published work. The development of wider employment-related
skills should not detract from that core objective.
The purpose of this statement is to give a common view of
typical research student thereby providing universities with a
aimed at helping them to ensure that all research training
across all disciplines. It is not the intention of this document
for research training.
the skills and experience of a
clear and consistent message
was of the highest standard,
to provide assessment criteria
It is expected that each Council will have additional requirements specific to their field of
interest and will continue to have their own measures for the evaluation of research training
within institutions.
(A) Research Skills and Techniques - to be able to demonstrate:
I. the ability to recognise and validate problems
II. original, independent and critical thinking, and the ability to develop
theoretical concepts
III. a knowledge of recent advances within one's field and in related areas
IV. an understanding of relevant research methodologies and techniques
and their appropriate application within one's research field
V. the ability to critically analyse and evaluate one's findings and those of
others
VI. an ability to summarise, document, report and reflect on progress
B) Research Environment - to be able to:
I. show a broad understanding of the context, at the national and
international level, in which research takes place
II. demonstrate awareness of issues relating to the rights of other
researchers, of research subjects, and of others who may be affected
by the research, e.g. confidentiality, ethical issues, attribution,
copyright, malpractice, ownership of data and the requirements of the
Data Protection Act
III. demonstrate appreciation of standards of good research practice in
their institution and/or discipline
100
IV. understand relevant health and safety issues and demonstrate
responsible working practices
V. understand the processes for funding and evaluation of research
VI. justify the principles and experimental techniques used in one's own
research
VII. understand the process of academic or commercial exploitation of
research results
(C) Research Management - to be able to:
I. apply effective project management through the setting of research
goals, intermediate milestones and prioritisation of activities
II. design and execute systems for the acquisition and collation of
information through the effective use of appropriate resources and
equipment
III. identify and access appropriate bibliographical resources, archives, and
other sources of relevant information
IV. use information technology appropriately for database management,
recording and presenting information
(D) Personal Effectiveness - to be able to:
I. demonstrate a willingness and ability to learn and acquire knowledge
II. be creative, innovative and original in one's approach to research
III. demonstrate flexibility and open-mindedness
IV. demonstrate self-awareness and the ability to identify own training
needs
V. demonstrate self-discipline, motivation, and thoroughness
VI. recognise boundaries and draw upon/use sources of support as
appropriate
VII. show initiative, work independently and be self-reliant
(E) Communication Skills - to be able to:
I. write clearly and in a style appropriate to purpose, e.g. progress
reports, published documents, thesis
II. construct coherent arguments and articulate ideas clearly to a range of
audiences, formally and informally through a variety of techniques
III. constructively defend research outcomes at seminars and viva
examination
IV. contribute to promoting the public understanding of one's research field
V. effectively support the learning of others when involved in teaching,
mentoring or demonstrating activities
(F) Networking and Teamworking - to be able to:
VI. develop and maintain co-operative networks and working relationships
with supervisors, colleagues and peers, within the institution and the
wider research community
I. understand one's behaviours and impact on others when working in
and contributing to the success of formal and informal teams
II. listen, give and receive feedback and respond perceptively to others
101
G) Career Management - to be able to:
I. appreciate the need for and show commitment to continued
professional development
II. take ownership for and manage one's career progression, set realistic
and achievable career goals, and identify and develop ways to improve
employability
III. demonstrate an insight into the transferable nature of research skills to
other work environments and the range of career opportunities within
and outside academia
IV. present one's skills, personal attributes and experiences through
effective CVs, applications and interviews.
Source: Joint Skills Statement 2001
102
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