Training and Development

This page is designed to help you find SWDTP training courses and to read about how the SWDTP devises its student focused training programme.

The South West Doctoral Training Partnership is committed to taking an innovative approach to training and development.

The SWDTP offers flexible, collaborative, and responsive training in accordance with student need. Our training programme ensures a strong foundation, emphasizing theoretical and methodological understanding, and the flexibility needed by the next generation of social scientists to address key social and global challenges in their diverse careers.

Upcoming SWDTP Funded Training Courses

Research and Academic Development

SPIN logo with fist raised

New Series: SPIN and the SWDTP are delighted to offer a series of forthcoming panels and workshops on the theme of secrecy and ignorance

SPIN (the Secrecy, Power, and Ignorance research Network) is a collection of academics, artists and practitioners interested in understanding how knowledge is unmade in relation to social, political, and knowledge-making processes across all disciplines, in all areas of life, and across empirical, theoretical and methodological approaches. Events will be running from September 2021 to March 2023.

Based across the southwest, with members at Bristol, Bath, Bath Spa, Cardiff, Exeter, Portsmouth, and UWE , we are an interdisciplinary group at all stages of career. We’re very keen to work with and support PhD researchers across the SWDTP to develop understandings of and methods associated with studying secrecy and ignorance. Do consider joining us for an event or two, or to find out more, visit

First event:

Twenty Years of the Global War on Terror: Looking back, looking forward – 8 September 2021

Marking the twentieth anniversary of the Global War on Terror: This SPIN panel brings together a range of experts on the war to reflect on what we now know (and still don’t) about its causes and its legacies.

Image of student sat at laptop. The event will be held online.

Precarity, prosperity and everything in between: PGR identities & wellbeing – 8 September 2021

Join us as we bring together PGRs and supervisors across institutions and disciplines, to explore the identities of a doctoral student.

How is your doctoral journey going? Are you surviving, are you thriving, have you got your sight set on the end-point or are you enjoying the wandering? Or do you feel stuck in one place or going round in circles? Are you a lone walker or a member of a tribe – or many tribes? What propels you, and what stands in your way?

Join us for a day of discussing these topics, as we bring together PGRs and supervisors across institutions and disciplines, to explore what it means to be a doctoral student. We’ll look at how professional and scholarly identities are forged alongside personal, social, emotional, political connections and identifications.

logo for university of Exeter, university of Bath and SWDTP logo

Early intervention is important for depression in young people. Image shows young man looking out window

Workshops on depression in young people, Summer 2021

The SWDTP is delighted to be co-funding a series of three workshops including talks by clinicians and researchers in the field, focus group discussions and young peoples’ perspectives, to open up new research avenues and opportunities for collaboration. These are being led by ADvaNCE (the adolescent depression network to consolidate expertise), a special interest research group which is passionate about reducing depression in young people.

The workshops are as follows: 

  • 2nd June – “What methods can be used to identify that a young person is experiencing depression?” 
  • 8th July – “What are the best early interventions for depression? And how early should they be used in order to result in the best patient outcomes?”
  • 15th September – “What are the best ways to tell young people with depression about treatment options and their effectiveness to help them feel more in control and to manage their difficulties?”

The workshops are open to all PhD students and ECRs from SWDTP Universities.

ADvaNCE (the adolescent depression network to consolidate expertise) logo
  • If you are interested in hearing more about ADvaNCE and our workshops please email
  • To be added to the ADvaNCE mailing list, please pop your details here and also give us a follow on Twitter @advance_ntwk

Career Skills Training

Our Career skills training courses have either past or are currently sold out. Please see the external training resources below for more career skills training, or visit our Past Training Page for resources from past training sessions.

Health and Wellbeing

Group Study/Writing Sessions

Every Wednesday afternoon from 14:00-16:30 the SWDTP will be running group study sessions. We hope that this will foster a collaborative and supportive environment within which our students can work whilst work spaces are lacking.

Every hour or so we will make space for optional breakout rooms for discussions of work and socialising.

These sessions have now finished for the academic year but will return in the Autumn Term

For more information please email Eloise Ames.

PGR Skills training courses are available at each institution across the partnership. Details for each location are as follows:

External Training Resources

NCRM (National Centre for Research Methods) logo

NCRM also offer a wide range of online resources (audio and video podcasts, online courses, publications, links to external resources which you may find relevant – NCRM Resources

Current NCRM training courses can be found at this link – NCRM Research Methods Training or you can search for NCRM training courses on their website NCRM Training Courses and Events

Training and Events | SWDTP

The UK Data Service has a series of webinars regarding data. Slides and recordings of UK Data Service webinars are made available on our past events pages and YouTube channel soon after the event has taken place.

To find out more and book a space onto a webinar, please head to the UK Data service’s events page

GW4 logo

In addition, all students from GW4 institutions can access training at other GW4 institutions, space permitting (priority goes to each institution’s students). This applies to all training listed on their catalogue. Further information is available on the GW4 website. For those students who are not registered at a GW4 institution (Bath/Bristol/Exeter/Cardiff), HEIs will typically allow you to attend training if space permits.  If you want to book onto training at another GW4 institution, you just need to contact that institution to request this. Details on how to do so is available on the webpage above.

Vitae logo

Vitae is an international programme of professional development for researchers.  They run a range of courses on areas such as making the best of your research, effective presentation and leadership.

ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council) logo

The ESRC funds a range of data and methods services to support research and study. It provides resources needed to access high quality socio-economic data and to develop research skills.

The Skills and Careers page on the ESRC website provides links to ESRC Media Training, the Peer Review Training Tool and the Impact Toolkit.

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The Centre for Longitudinal Studies (CLS) manages four British cohort studies: the 1958 National Child Development Study, the 1970 British Cohort Study, Next Steps and the Millennium Cohort Study.

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CLOSER supports the use of longitudinal research.  Key resources include reading lists and summaries of findings, and a search platform to help find out what data has been collected across all eight studies in the CLOSER partnership.

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Understanding Society is a major longitudinal survey of around 40,000 UK households. The site contains information on the survey, as well ad research articles, reports and policy briefings based on this survey.

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The Administrative Data Research Network enables accredited researchers to access securely held de-identified linked administrative data for research that has potential to benefit society.

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Census and Administrative data Longitudinal Studies Hub promotes and supports ONS LS, SLS and NILS datasets which hold up to 40 years of individual-level data including census and linked administrative data.