A5 - Who shares wins: a new model in doctoral training

Day 1 at 15:20 - Who shares wins: a new model in doctoral training
Day Day 1
Session A
Start time 15:20
Strand Postgraduate research
Code A5

Dr Rebekah Smith McGloin - Research Capability Development Manager, Coventry University

Dr Faye Taylor - Policy and Projects Manager, University Alliance

Dr Keith Fildes - Researcher Development Adviser,Sheffield Hallam University

Workshop overview:

The cohort-based model of doctoral education is already well established in many UK universities. 

Changes in Research Council funding models have led to significant numbers of funded home postgraduates in many research-intensive universities finding themselves part of a doctoral training programme. 

The advantages of peer support, tailored training and enhanced industry engagement are currently widely discussed. 

The challenges are also the cause of debate and focus on the emerging paradigm of two-tier training, often within a single institution.

Concentration of postgraduate funding into doctoral training programmes into a smaller number of institutions has also created greater disparity at sector level.

University Alliance HEIs have recently developed the cohort model further to fit more geographically disparate, smaller communities of doctoral students who are carrying out a different kind of research.

The first national Doctoral Training Alliance (DTA) launches across 12 universities this October.  Several others are planned.

This workshop looks at the opportunities in this innovative approach and what it might mean for other communities of postgraduate researchers, policy-makers and research developers across the sector.

Workshop topics covered:

  • Overview of structural changes in doctoral education across the sector
  • What are the policy drivers?
  • What makes research at University Alliance institutions distinct?
  • Characteristics of the Doctoral Training Alliance model
  • Methodology for development and set-up
  • Challenges to developing the model in non-research-intensive universities
  • Aspirations for the future
  • Other possible developments of the model to support innovations in the sector:  professional doctorates, co-tutelles, international research capability development 

Themes covered:

  • New approaches to enabling researchers to reach their potential and make powerful career choices
  • New and interesting ways of supporting mobility - international, intersectoral, interdisciplinary and virtual mobility

Workshop outcomes:

Participants will have gained:

  • An understanding of sector-wide structural changes (Graduate Schools, Doctoral Colleges, Doctoral Training Programmes)
  • An overview of further developments in the doctoral training model
  • An insight into the first Doctoral Training Alliance programme
  • An opportunity to consider and discuss how the model might continue to evolve.


Presentation and discussion