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Key Information for Postgraduate Research Students in Theatre and Performance Studies

It is currently possible to enrol for an MA by Research, MPhil or PhD in the Department. PhD students normally enrol for an MPhil first and, on successful completion of the Graduate Progress Committee evaluation at the end of their first year of study, are upgraded to PhD. We will normally accept candidates with a good honours degree, but for MPhil and PhD levels it is certainly preferable to have completed an MA in Theatre/Performance Studies or a cognate discipline. We should stress that it is quite difficult to achieve external funding if an MA has not been successfully completed beforehand. Prospective applicants should complete the Department's online Research Enquiry Form as well as providing a CV and detailed research proposal. If we have a staff member available who is able to supervise the proposed topic, we will put them in touch with the candidate to discuss the proposal further. All being well, candidates will then be asked to complete and submit application forms via the University's online application procedure.

MA by Research



Your departmental induction happens via your supervisor, so make contact directly you arrive. The Director of Graduate Studies will also meet with you within the first few weeks of term. The departmental research seminars (in weeks 2, 5 and 9 each term) provide another point of contact between you and other staff and postgraduate students in the department, and attendance at these is highly advised.

Warwick University has a programme of induction events, see

CADRE ( arrange induction events, as well as research related events throughout the year.

Below is a summary of key points, details are available in the PGR Handbook on supervision, mentoring, upgrade, extensions, etc.

University Guidelines on

the Supervision and Monitoring of Research Degree Students
Guide to Examinations of Higher Degrees by Research
Guideline on Use of Postgraduate Students for Teaching
Guidelines on the Supervision of Students Based Away from the University

Forms you may need during your studies - temporary withdrawal, etc.

are centrally available at


Successful candidates will work primarily with a supervisor, though they are also allocated a personal mentor, who is a member of staff who supports students pastorally. There is an expectation that candidate and supervisor meet at regular intervals over the course of the academic year, not less than once a month. In exceptional cases, where additional or specialist assistance is required, the Department will bring in a co-supervisor from another department or university. Students will be expected to use Tabula ( to note meetings, summarise agreed action points and note next meeting, which will be approved by supervisors, and only viewable by the student, supervisor, and Director of Graduate Studies.

Upgrade and Graduate Progress Committee

Each year research students are required to attend a Graduate Progress Committee (GPC) during which the supervisor and one other member of academic staff review and discuss the candidate’s progress. Candidates are expected to submit not less than a fortnight before the meeting

* a report on their previous year's progress, including a narrative report of at least 300 words reflecting on their academic, personal and professional development across the Warwick Skills forge framework’s themes and a bibliography listing reading undertaken towards the research;

* outline their research or thesis plan, with a time-line for the following year;

* a draft of at least one chapter.

They are expected to respond to this material orally at the GPC. Apart from being an opportunity to assess progress and set agendas for the following year, these meetings are of particular importance when upgrades or extensions are under consideration. They are also effectively precursive training towards an eventual viva examination.

Research Seminars and Reading Groups

Each term the Department holds a Theatre and Performance Studies seminar series at which staff, postgraduates and visiting speakers are invited to give papers. These are co-organised by staff members and postgraduate research students. Additional seminars are often organised when distinguished international academics happen to be passing through the Department. From time to time special interest reading groups emerge, allowing academic staff and research postgraduates to discuss new and exciting topics or critical texts.

Postgraduate Day

Each summer term the Department holds a postgraduate day at which all postgraduate research students are required to give either presentations on their research or papers that they are due to present at conferences. Contributions should be between 10-20 minutes. At this meeting we discuss postgraduate facilities and resources, and review postgraduate provision within the Department.

Conference Travel and Research Support

The Department encourages research students to attend and give papers (when it is appropriate to do so) at national and international conferences. Postgraduates have in recent years presented at conferences of the International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR), the American Society for Theatre Research (ASTR), Performance Studies International (PSi) and the Theatre and Performance Research Association (TAPRA). The Department encourages postgraduate students to seek initial funding through the Graduate School of Warwick University and other internal and external bodies, but aims to enable attendance within reason at any legitimate conference where they are to give a paper or where attendance will significantly enhance their research. Postgraduates should discuss their plans with their supervisors and the Head of School in the first instance. Small contributions to research travel costs and other items will also be made at the discretion of the candidate’s supervisor and the Head of School. The Humanities Research Centre (HRC) offers funding for postgraduates (on a competitive basis) towards organising modest conferences or symposia.

Postgraduate Space

There is a Theatre Studies PGR workroom (room G51) on the ground floor of Millburn House that is exclusively for PGR and PGT Theatre and Performance Studies students. Please see Kate Brennan or Sarah Shute to obtain the code to the room. The room is secure and you can leave books, etc. There are computers and a printer, a few soft chairs.

Postgraduates working through practice can book studio, rehearsal or edit suite spaces as and when appropriate via the Department's customary booking procedures and book via departmental secretary.

There is also a purpose-built space shared with Film Studies and History of Art postgraduates which is situated on the first floor of the Film Studies department in room A1.07, accessible with your Warwick identity card. There are separate rooms for private study but also common areas and kitchen facilities.

Senate House (next to Warwick Arts Centre), has made available significant study space for the use of all PGR students (the postgraduate hub). Practice-based postgraduate students are at liberty to book available studio or edit suite space insofar as it is available during term time (see Kate Brennan, departmental secretary room G29 or email However, they are advised to make principal use of space during vacations – particularly the summer months – when it is unlikely to be in use for teaching purposes. See also IATL practical facilities (below).

The Faculty provides dedicated PGR study space within the Humanities building, for details and to book a hot desk please consult the CADRE website for further instructions,


The Department is concerned to provide teaching opportunities for postgraduates as and when appropriate. This may involve running seminars as part of lecture-based modules, delivering one-off lectures or seminars on specialist areas or running practical workshop-based projects. This provision is discretionary and usually organised in consultation with module convenors and postgraduate supervisors. Training for postgraduates teaching on undergraduate programmes is available and mandatory for postgraduates undertaking more than 20 contacts hours of teaching per year. See:

Research Training and Professional Development

The Department, via the student's director of studies, sees to the research student's specific research needs, in individual consultation with the student.

Programmes covering generic research skills and methods training are run by the Faculty of Arts, the Graduate School of the University, CADRE and Student Careers and Skills. Postgraduates are encouraged to inform themselves of what is on offer from year to year and attend as appropriate, see,

Students are required to take a specific number of courses a year on transferable skills, not specific to their academic department, discipline or research area; activities specific to their department or discipline (within an academic context), and conferencing or networking activities.

The following webpage shows all the courses available, allows you to book places and also keep track of what you are doing,

User guides are available on the web:

For researchers this is:

Thesis formatting and submission


Title and title page

The title should describe the content of the thesis accurately and concisely. The title page of every volume shall give the following information in the order listed (see Guide to Examinations for Higher Degrees by Research):

The full title of the thesis and the subtitle, if any.
The total number of volumes if more than one and the number of the particular volume.
The full name of the author, followed, if desired, by any qualifications and distinctions.
The full name of the qualification for which the thesis is submitted.
The name of the University and of the department, school or centre in which the research was conducted.
The month and year of submission.

Health and safety

The School takes your Health and Safety seriously and, with this in mind, asks you to report any accidents or near misses you have whilst on campus to your supervisor (or personal tutor) and to the Departmental Administrator, Sarah Shute. This will enable us to investigate the cause of any incident and to try and avoid future accidents.