All three institutions contributing to the NRP have established mechanisms for training of postgraduate research students; this includes training in generic and research skills as required by the UK research council’s joint skills statement. The NRP bolsters these efforts by providing scope for new training materials which can be shared between the three institutions. In addition, a research seminar series will be organised which all research students will be expected to attend; the creation of Access Grid venues at the three participating institutions will facilitate this activity by allowing research students to participate in these seminars without the need to travel outside their “home” institution. The Access Grid will also allow the Graduate School to make use of overseas speakers, significantly improving the scope and quality of the seminar series.
To further enhance the research student experience, we anticipate joint supervision across institutions. This would serve to encourage academic supervisors and students to regard their work as being situated within the NRP, rather than simply within “local” institutional activities. Other potential Graduate School activities will include: an annual research student poster session, a joint induction programme, assistance in identifying and attracting support for projects and activity to enhance experience, such as conference attendance and exchange visits.
The overall guiding principle of the Graduate School will be that at all levels of interaction and engagement, a collegial spirit will be paramount, with wide consultation and the promotion of consensus where possible in the making and implications of decisions. It will operate at all times to foster dynamism, interdisciplinarity and the development of collaborative groupings whilst recognising that the fundamental strength of the NRP lies within its professional groupings. It will be committed to advancement through open and transparent consultation and communication.
All students who register for a higher degree or qualification in Postgraduate Research [PGR] at any NRP Institution and within the disciplines which form the JRIs of the NRP will be members of the NRP Graduate School.
The NRP Graduate School will enhance institutional provision to ensure an intellectually stimulating, supportive and rigorous research and teaching environment by striving to create a culture to meet the needs and interests of postgraduates. The Graduate School will nurture research and scholarship across the academic disciplines that comprise the NRP, and will promote interdisciplinary activity and excellence.
The Graduate School will advise on and promote evidence of best practice in research training and supervision, monitoring student progress and standards to ensure that students supported to derive maximum benefits from their postgraduate experience.