PGR Annual Progress Review, MVLS Graduate School

Purpose of the PGR Progress Review

The process allows you and your supervisor(s) to plan your training needs for the year. You can also plan for regular milestones for progression.

The reviews are as follows:

  • Year 1: Complete an initial review and annual review
  • All following years: Complete an annual review only

Log in to the online system: PGR Review Process - Online System

Year 1

Initial Review

Training Needs Assessment

When: Months 0-2

Literature Review and Project Aims Report

When: Within first 3 months of your start date (For those who commence in October the initial review should be completed by the end of January or as determined by Institute/School) and uploaded onto the PGR Progress Review System under the ‘Initial’ tab

  • The literature review is completed by the student and consists of a summary of the current scientific literature relevant to your research, the scientific aims of your research project, and the experimental approaches/study design you may use. This is examined by the assessor panel who also review the Researcher Development Log (MS Word) and the ‌ form. This will form the basis of discussion at your first meeting, and will be part of your Initial Review process.
  • The review/report should be concise. Use 10 pt Arial font and 1.5 line spacing (2 cm margin). It should be no more than 6 pages long, including a literature review (approx 4 pages including figures), an outline project plan (approx 1 page) and a maximum of 40 references.

  • A progress review is completed online by the supervisor and the student; this should be brief and is designed to support students in their progression.

  • Postgraduate Conveners will engage with the student if difficulties are highlighted. 

Annual Review

Local arrangements within Institutes and Schools will apply for the organisation of the annual review.  Any students or members of staff who are unclear on their Institute or School policy are to contact their Postgraduate Conveners in the first instance.  Any student starting after January is required to have an annual review. Please contact your supervisor or PGR Convener for guidance. Included is normally an approximately 3000 word report in the style of a journal appropriate to your discipline and suggested by your supervisor. It should therefore contain an abstract, an introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion (the latter two may be combined). In addition there should be a 500-1000 word section at the end of the report detailing the following year’s work with potential pitfalls and solutions identified.

Data Management Plan

All PGR students entering doctoral training programs in academic year 2018-19 onwards must prepare a data management plan for their research projects as part of their submission for progression from year 1 to year 2 of their doctoral studies. A data management plan takes one to two hours to prepare and approximately half an hour to review. Both the student and supervisor may want to attend training on how to write a data management plan. This training, and a DMP review service is already available to all staff and students.   More information on data management support for researchers can be found at here.

Presentation

When: As determined by Institute/School

  • All students are required to deliver a presentation, either oral or poster, by the end of their first year.
  • The time of the year and format for these presentations may vary between the Institutes and Schools.

Report

When: By 30 June

  • The student must submit a scientific report, with a note of progress over the year, at the time of the annual review. 
  • Check with your local Postgraduate Convener for any additional requirements. 

Formal Assessment Interview

When: Month 9 (the annual review must be completed by the end of August)

  • A Formal Assessment Interview (MS Word) is composed of two assessors who are not directly involved in the supervision of the student.
  • Assessors meet with the student face-to-face for a formal interview.
  • At this point remedial action must be agreed upon if required. 
  • A formal note of the meeting and action points must be uploaded by the panel within one week of the interview. 
  • A progression marker, which is represented through a 'Traffic light (MS Word)' system, must be completed by the Postgraduate Convener to allow the student to register for the next academic session.
  • Check with your local Postgraduate Convener for any additional requirements.

All students apart from Year 1

Annual Review

Training Needs Assessment

When: Throughout year of study

Report/Thesis Plan 

When: By 30 June   (An earlier deadline may apply, please check with your Institute/School)

  • The student must submit a scientific report, with a note of progress over the year, at the time of the annual review for each year of study. 
  • In the final year of study, the student must complete a scientific report and also include a thesis plan when completing the online PGR progress review.
  • Check with your local Postgraduate Convener for any additional requirements. 

Formal Assessment Interview

When: As determined by Institute/School (Graduate School must receive confirmation through the online system of progression by 31 August)

  • A Formal Assessment Interview (MS Word) is composed of two assessors who are not directly involved in the supervision of the student.
  • Assessors meet with the student face-to-face for a formal interview.
  • At this point remedial action must be agreed upon if required. 
  • A formal note of the meeting and action points must be uploaded by the panel within one week of the interview.
  • A progression marker, which is represented through a Traffic light (MS Word) system, must be completed by the Postgraduate Convener to allow the student to register for the next academic session.
  • To be organised at Institute/School level with the Postgraduate Convener.

Presentation

When: Before the end of the Year or as determined by Institute/School

  • A presentation is to be completed by all students, either poster or oral, by the end of their second/third year.
  • Check with your local Postgraduate Convener for any additional requirements.

Local arrangements within Institutes and Schools will normally apply for the organisation of the annual review. Any students or members of staff who are unclear on their Institute or School policy are to contact their Postgraduate Conveners in the first instance. 


Thesis Pending

Final Year Interview

When:  Recommended at least 8 months prior to submission deadline

  • Students within a year of the absolute thesis submission deadline will be interviewed specifically on their progress in thesis writing (in the case of MSc(R) in one year, this may be dealt with at the progress review).
  • The interview will be arranged by their Postgraduate Conveners

Submission of Thesis

 When: Within 4 years

  • It is mandatory for all full-time PhD, MD, MVM and DDS students to submit within 4 years of commencing their period of research.
  • Supervisors and students are expected to know the thesis submission date and ensure that the thesis is submitted by this deadline.
  • Any extensions or suspensions of study must be formally requested with a letter sent to the Graduate School

Intention to Submit a Thesis Form 

When: Approximately 3-6 months prior to thesis submission deadline

  • An Intention to Submit (MS Word) form to be submitted to the MVLS Graduate School office.  This is the initial step in the process to nominate your examination committee and must be submitted to prevent your examination being delayed.

Additional information

Part-time Students

  • The above review format must be followed for each year of study, until the thesis pending year is reached.
  • It also recognised that part-time students will make less progress in any one year than full-time students. It is, however, still important to review the progress that has been made in that time period.
  • The minimum duration of part-time PhD study is 5 years. The maximum period for thesis submission is no later than 8 years. 

MSc by Research Students

  • Students who are registered to undertake an MSc by Research must participate in the Initial and Annual reviews. 
  • Both literature reviews and project plans must follow the same timelines as those in place for PhD students.  

MVLS & MRC in Precision Medicine Doctoral Training Programme Students

  • Students who are registered on the MVLS & MRC Precision Medicine DTP will be issued with separate instructions for their reviews. Please contact Alexis Merry, DTP Coordinator, should you have any questions on the review process. 

Furth of Glasgow: Annual Progress Review

  • Discuss methods and frequency of communication with your supervisor in advance. 
  • You must still complete the annual progress requirements when studying “furth of Glasgow”.
  • The appointed supervisor in the field will be expected to contribute to your annual report.
  • If you are abroad when the formal assessment interviews are taking place, the School or Institute can arrange a Skype interview.
  • The Graduate School adheres to The University of Glasgow Furth of Glasgow policy.

Duties of the Reviewer/Assessor

The Postgraduate Convener, in consultation with the supervisor(s), is responsible for the appointment of a reviewer/assessor for each research student during the period of the research study.  The reviewer/assessor, where possible, will be familiar with the area of research.

The reviewer/assessor is responsible for encouraging both student and supervisor to adopt the best practice and will assist the student with regard to solving problems arising during the period of research, including problems which may arise between the student and the supervisor.

The role is envisaged as largely pastoral. Duties include the following:

  • To maintain regular, informal contact with the student during the course of the research. The expectation is that there will be an informal discussion regarding progress at least once per semester.
  • To maintain regular contact with the supervisor during the course of the research project with the aim, in particular, of awareness of difficulties that might arise.
  • To encourage the student to raise problems with the Graduate School or Postgraduate Convener which are affecting his or her progress.
  • To provide an alternative conduit for information between the student and supervisor with the objective to solve problems at an early stage.
  • To discuss the content of the student’s annual progress report.
  • To add a brief paragraph to the annual report on the quality and progress of the research and the research training.