Postgraduate Research Supervisors

Information and advice for Postgraduate Research Supervisors on recruiting and supervising Postgraduate Research (PGR) students.

Recruitment of PGR students

Student enquiries

If you receive a direct enquiry from a potential student, please notify the Graduate School Office as soon as possible. We will ensure that the candidate receives the correct application documents and can answer any questions regarding the application process.

Advertising studentships

All studentships are advertised on the Graduate School web pages and Please email if you wish to advertise a studentship. 

Please note: Studentships are no longer advertised on the HR pages.

Application and interview process

Application process

All potential PGR students, regardless of funding or mode of study, are required to complete an application form. The application form is required so that there is a record of the candidate's academic background/qualifications, a project proposal and an understanding of why the candidate wishes to apply for the particular project, as well as providing names of referees.

When an application is received, it should be submitted to the Graduate School Office, who will forward it to the Faculty PGR Director for consideration, as per the UWE PGR Admission policy. If it is felt that the applicant is a strong candidate, that the proposed research project is in-line with UWE's research strategy and that it can be supported by the University, an interview will arranged.

Interview process

The primary purpose of the interview is to assess the candidate’s potential to undertake and complete the proposed programme of research, and to explore any issues or requirements.

Graduate School staff are able to help arrange the interview. Please e-mail

A member of the Faculty Research Degrees Committee (FRDC) is required to chair the panel, the potential Director of Studies should normally be on the panel, as well as others with particular relevance to the project (eg potential supervisor, collaborator, someone with subject specific knowledge etc.).

Progression examination

The DoS is responsible for identifying the examiners for the progression examination, completing the RD2a form and submitting it to the Graduate School Office. The RD2a will then be considered by the appropriate FRDC. The Graduate School Office is able to organise the progression viva.

A Director of Studies cannot be one of the examiners for the Progression Exam.

Final examination

The Director of Studies is required to submit the EX1 form to the FRDC three months prior to the proposed viva, to ensure that all members of the examination team have sufficient time to read the thesis and report on it.

Three months allows time for:

  • the EX1 to be approved by the Research Degrees Award Board
  • the student to submit their thesis
  • the appropriate paperwork to be compiled and distributed along with the thesis to examiners
  • examiners to read the thesis (up to six weeks allocated)

Please note: The EX1 needs to be approved prior to the student submitting their soft bound thesis.

Independent Chairs 

To identify an Independent Chair, the Director of Studies should e-mail, who will then provide the DoS with names of three Independent Chairs. This process allows the DoS a choice of Independent Chairs while also ensuring that Independent Chairs do no more than four vivas per year.

'Right to work' evidence for external examiners

The Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 strengthened the requirement for employers to check documents to establish a person's eligibility to work in the UK.  As a result, the University has a legal responsibility to check that all employees are entitled to work in the UK.

Because external examiners receive payment through UWE payroll, they are in effect ‘employed’ by the University for this purpose and are therefore required to provide the necessary documentation.


The UWE Academic Regulations and Procedures (Section K) governs the conduct of research degrees and are updated annually. You are advised to regularly check the current Academic Regulations and Procedures, especially as your PGR student reaches milestone points in their studies to ensure you are familiar with the most up-to-date editions.

Workload bundles (WLB) for PGR

The supervisory team receives 30 bundles per year across the whole team for a full-time student (20 for a part-time student). The default distribution of bundles for a full-time student is 20 for the DoS and 10 for second supervisor(s). However, if you wish to change the distribution for the supervisory team for your student, it can be adjusted through the usual WLM processes.

Research degree forms

At each milestone of a students PGR journey (project registration, progression, annual monitoring) or if there is a change to a student's registration, they will need to complete the relevant research degree form, which is then submitted to the FRDC for consideration.

These forms support the University, through the Graduate School, in its  recruitment of high quality students, and in regularly monitoring progress so that, for the benefit of the student and Institution, doctoral projects are completed successfully in good time.

Further information

If you require further information or support, or have any suggestions for information you would like to see on this page, please email


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