Summary of items discussed
Applications are now open for students to apply. All reps encouraged to apply. Will take place in Bath on 14-16 June. The idea of a summer school was originally in the 2016 SWDTP bid so will be good to fulfil this. Applications feedback to be given w/c 25 March. All costs are covered if you are offered a place.
Visits to begin w/c 7 March in real life, student reps were invited to these events to engage with bigger conversations. Bath visit will take place on 9 March, Exeter on 11 March, and Bristol on the 16 March.
ESRC to send out call to Doctoral Partnerships in a few months. EA and MC asked students to consider the following questions:
- How would student reps like to be involved?
- How should the SWDTP involve the student body in decisions?
SWDTP hub clarified it will be an interesting opportunity for reps to be involved and described the process of re-bid involving an audit of all activities in the past 10 years, including a breakdown by institution and pathway, achievements, and future plans for the next 10 years if successful in rebid.
HH noted the SWDTP needed to be clear on the time commitment involved before becoming involved. EA confirmed any time spent would be ad hoc and students only had to give time if they wanted to/had capacity to.
Reps suggested it might be worth looking at what have alumni done in the last 10 years, and felt surveys would be beneficial for involving the student body and would assist those students who utilise surveys in their research already.
Update from sites/pathways
Exeter reps have a pizza afternoon planned on 11 March. EJ and HH also host online and in person coffee mornings every other week. Fed back they struggle to communicate with those who don’t know about the event and said this might be due to students not wanting to turn up to something on your own. The online coffee morning has also had low turnout. EA reminded students the Cohort Building Fund can be used for these coffee mornings.
MC suggested an event similar to “Shut up and write” at Bath which involves a structured group session of silent study. An example of the day could be ‘Shut up and write’ session, lunch, student reps meeting, meeting led by the Collaboration Facilitator to remind students of funding opportunities.
Reps also discussed some relevant information to students not being particularly accessible. For example, what can be done with the different funding pots available. EA agreed to use examples like Nick’s use of Impact Fund and Nina’s podcast more clear on the website.
NRP brought up the difficulty in supervisors not knowing what is available for students to be funded. NRP noted some supervisors seem to be hesitant to provide time off writing/out of the school.
Possible solutions mentioned included:
- Workshop on how students can approach supervisors
- Spreadsheet with name, when you can apply, whether it extends your PhD to be shared
Reps also talked about prior to their studentship, many were unclear how to find/approach supervisors. EJ commented speaking to current SWDTP students before applying for funding was helpful and recommended this become more common for future students.