A8 - Equality of opportunity? Challenges in the DTC/P landscape

Day 1 at 15:20 - Equality of opportunity? Challenges in the DTC/P landscape


Day Day 1
Session A
Start time 15:20
Strand Postgraduate Research
Code A8

Dr Nigel Eady - Head of Researcher Training and Development, King's College London    

Dr Caitlin Patrick - Social Science Research Methods Co-ordinator, King's College London       

Dr Jane Wellens - Head of the Graduate School, University of Nottingham                                   


Most funding agencies, in particular the UK Research Councils, have moved towards funding most, if not all, of their PhD studentships through Doctoral Training Centres or Partnerships. These provide high quality training environments, with the additional benefits of building strong cohorts of researchers. However, in many institutions, these students co-exist alongside self-funded and internationally-funded students, who may not be able to access the same development opportunities and may feel more isolated than their DTC/P counterparts. This can create a dual or even multi-tiered training landscape. This workshop will outline how two universities, King’s College London and the University of Nottingham, have tried to create equality of opportunity. In particular, the King’s Interdisciplinary Social Science DTC (KISS DTC) – an attempt to bring social science PhD students from all faculties together, irrespective of funder - will be described. There will be ample opportunity for attendees to outline and discuss similar challenges in the training landscape.

This session will cover:

  • the intra-institutional KISS doctoral training model at King’s College London
  • initial evaluation of the KISS model
  • approaches to bring together DTC/Ps at the University of Nottingham
  • the challenges of aligning multiple priorities to produce a uniformly high quality student experience for all PhD students
  • views from other institutions

Participants will:

  • understand the variety of models and approaches being taken to create effective cohorts of students
  • examine the pros and cons of various cohort models
  • discuss how to deliver best practice in large/diffuse institutions
  • take away at least one idea to implement


Short presentations and small group discussion.

Participants are encouraged to share successes and challenges in addressing similar issues.