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This course will help you kick-start your DPhil


This is an opportunity for you to take some time out and consider your DPhil, the context you are working in and what you need to do to complete it successfully. You will also find out about the support and resources available to you.

The course will cover:

  • What is a DPhil?
  • What do I have to do to get it?
  • Where can I get help and how can I help myself?

You will find out about the context of your DPhil (Oxford, the wider science and research community), find out, think about and plan what you need to do to get your DPhil, and hear from people who can help and support you.


By the end of the session participants will be able to: 

  • Increase their awareness of the context and requirements of the DPhil
  • Assess their skills and experience and identified areas for personal development
  • Increase their awareness of the supervisor’s perspective
  • Develop strategies to manage the supervisory relationship effectively
  • Develop strategies and use tools to support the planning of the DPhil project


"I had fun during the course, and I thought it was great to be able to meet other first-year DPhil students in other MPLS areas, some of whom had similar research interests but who I otherwise may not have met as we belong in different departments."

"Great course - I have recommended it to all the post-docs in my group to in turn recommend new students next year to take it as well."

"The planning exercises in the group made me realise that I need to do a lot more long-term planning, and they provided a wake-up call that 6 months have already passed."

"I feel that I am in a better position to tackle the rest of my DPhil as a result of attending this course."


First year graduate research students




Dr Imad Ahmed, Department of Earth Sciences


Information about the next scheduled course, and how to apply for a place, are in our course programme. This course usually takes place during Hilary Term. If it isn't currently appearing in the course programme, please keep checking back. 


B1, B2, C2

The Researcher Development Framework (RDF) provides a framework for planning and supporting the personal, professional and career development of graduate students and research staff.