The Graduate School is an administrative department within the wider Academic Office. The Graduate School supports academic staff across the University with advice and guidance as to how to negotiate the University’s guidelines, regulatory framework and procedures. Each academic department appoints a Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) on an annual basis and a number of departments split this role between two individuals, one with responsibility for taught programmes, and the other for research programmes. Regardless of the structure within your department, the DGS is the departmental representative for postgraduate issues and is the key conduit through which postgraduate queries in the department should be routed.
Your department may have a range of forums and meetings where you can share best practice in regards to supervision of research students. There is an institutional commitment to supporting supervisors, via departments such as LDC and online environments such as this one. The Guidelines on the Supervision and Monitoring of Research Students is a useful guide to where responsibilities for the development and support of research students lies, and sets out the demarcation of responsibilities between the Graduate School, supervisor and student. Departments and supervisors are expected, at all times, to keep a detailed record of supervisions and discussions with supervisees in order to demonstrate effective engagement and monitoring of student progression.
DGS are provided with regular updates from the Graduate School in regards to any change of policies and procedures and expected to cascade these updates to all supervisors and other relevant members of staff within the Department.
Each faculty has a Graduate Studies Committee which acts as the forum for postgraduate matters, and any discussions and debates held at this committee feed into the main faculty board. Chairs of Graduate Studies Committee sit on the Board of Graduate Studies (BGS), the University’s highest body focussed solely on postgraduate matters. The Chair of BGS is an integral member of the Graduate School team and leads on strategy development of postgraduate matters, in conjunction with the Deputy Academic Registrar.
More information regarding faculty boards can be found here:
More information regarding the Board of Graduate Studies can be found here.