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Programme Framework

Discipline-based Training

The intention of the discipline-based component of this training programme is to build on information, skills and ideas introduced in the generic training. Whereas the generic training component raises awareness of the range of possible methodologies and of techniques for information acquisition, analysis and presentation, this component aims to demonstrate how those methodologies and techniques can be utilised in the student's own discipline. It is not intended that there will be uniformity in the nature of the provision of this component, and students may negotiate a variety of training routes.

For this component and for the Project-specific Training students will need to discuss their training needs with their supervisors so that a programme of training can be developed.

This component of the training will run throughout the period before the student transfers from Advanced Postgraduate Student status to a specific degree programme (MPhil or PhD), normally approximately 15 months for full-time students.

Provision of discipline-based training will be by groups of supervisors, and responsibility for overseeing, coordinating and facilitating this component will most usually lie with the leader of the research group in which the student is based (i.e. of which the student's Director of Studies is a member). The programme should be agreed by each student and their supervisor within one month after enrolment for full-time students and within two months after enrolment for part-time students, and should be included in the documentation at registration as a Plan of Work.

Successful completion of the discipline-based training component will be demonstrated before transfer from Advanced Postgraduate Student to a specified degree course.

The discipline-based training shall be provided by the Schools. The School's nominated Research Leader shall convene this programme.

The minimum provisions shall comprise the following:

Between Registration and Transfer:

Training in discipline-based methods
Each student shall attend either modules (or parts thereof) offered as part of the generic MSc Research Methods course and/or modules (or parts thereof) in research methods offered as part of existing discipline-based Masters programmes. Needs and requirements shall be determined by personal audit undertaken by the principal supervisor, where prior learning and experience shall be accredited. In addition, each student shall attend three workshops offered by the School as follow-up sessions on discipline-based research methods (nominally one shall be held every term).
Training in discipline-based research seminars
Each student shall attend a programme of research seminars organised by the School. A minimum programme of six seminars shall be set in every academic year.
Training in discipline-based dissemination practices
Each student shall attend one workshop on disseminating research organised by the School and present their research (poster) at the annual University of Northampton Swap-Shop.

At Transfer

  • Each student shall give a seminar on their research at the School, present two draft chapters – one of which should cover methodological issues – and participate in a viva that shall include two or three members of academic staff or externals, at least one of whom is not a member of the student's supervisory team.

After Transfer

  • Each student shall present their research at the annual University of Northampton internal conference and receive guidance on how to do so.
  • Each student shall be encouraged to present their research at relevant external conferences/workshops and receive guidance on how to do so.
  • Each student shall be encouraged to publish aspects of their research and receive guidance on how to do so.

From Enrolment to Submission

  • Each student shall attend student-led reading/discussion groups or colloquia set in place by each School, which should meet at least once each term.
  • Each student shall continue to attend Generic Training.
  Induction and Generic Training
  Discipline-based Training
  Project-based Training
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