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Manchester
Wednesday, October 23, 2019

TRAINING

All the latest news, announcements and information about the Faculty of Arts and Humanities Research Training Programme 2019-2020.

Also details about our optional skills and development training opportunities for PGRs – such as Provocative Theory; Methods and Methodologies; the Practice Research Group; various Writing Groups; and Digital Research sessions and one-to-one support.

Additional research training sessions are run by The Graduate School.


REMINDER: Book into all the Weds classes on Skills Forge so it is recorded in your Skills Forge Development section.

RESEARCH TRAINING PROGRAMME 2019-20

The desire to find out is woven into the way we are, as is our relationality: we need others in order to survive. The PAHC Research Training Programme brings together these two fundamental forces.

Doctoral research is a practice of social participation between students, staff (support, academic, library, administration) and our research subjects. The Programme is designed to assist the growth of this community of research practice.

The Research Training Programme is designed to guide you through the processes of doing doctoral or masters research. There are a small number of students doing a Masters by Research degree, who we particularly welcome to the programme. It explains and examines both the practical and scholarly elements of doing doctoral research: come to the Righton building on a Wednesday and you can learn about how to acquire a locker and discuss theoretical concepts. You can meet other research students and share the pleasures and difficulties of research. PAHC includes a great range of disciplines: you can share the deep knowledge that you will develop within your field and learn from others about new ones.

Most of the Programme up to Easter is presented by staff from the Faculty. After Easter, we encourage students to design and run their own sessions. These can be single sessions or ambitious projects like exhibitions, conferences, residencies, workshops. See the Student Initiatives section on page 27. Talk with Myna Trustram if you have an idea.

Roll over and left-click on the tabs below to browse each section…

Core SeriesProvocative TheoryMethods and MethodologiesPractice Research GroupWriting GroupsDigital Research

CORE SERIES

Wednesdays, weekly – 9 Oct – 18th Dec; 15 Jan – 1 Apr
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are Wednesdays, 10:00am–12:00pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

These sessions are at the heart of the Research Training Programme. They are designed for all students across the Faculty regardless of the discipline within which you work. Here we will address critical questions about how to do a PhD and an MA by Research.

Sessions range from the procedural stages of undertaking a PhD such as ‘The Research Proposal and the application to register (RD1)’, ‘The Progression Review (RD2) and the Annual Review’ and ‘Vivas’ to more general academic concerns such ‘Going to conferences’ and ‘Publishing in academic journals’.

Full details in the Researcher Training Programme brochure embedded below (from p. 14).

PROVOCATIVE THEORY

Wednesdays, two-weekly – 9, 23 Oct; 6, 20 Nov; 11 Dec; 15, 29 Jan; 12, 26 Feb; 11, 25 Mar
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are 1-2.30pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

This is a series of staff-led presentations and student discussions on key areas of cultural theory, all intended to encourage participants to think about interconnections between theory and practice in your own research. You may wish to participate in the entire series, but each session is designed to work independently so you can select topics that are most relevant to you. The first half of each session will be a presentation by staff from across the Faculty, introducing a specific theme as it figures across different disciplines. Presentations will be followed by discussion when you are encouraged to relate the material to the development of your own practice. There will be a short list of readings on a weekly basis. If you’re planning to attend, you should try to engage with this. They are presented as stand-alones so that students can select the theories that are of interest to them.

Four of the sessions will focus on areas identified by students, commencing with the one on 20 Nov. These could be used to either develop ideas already raised, with directed reading selected by the group, or explore fresh theoretical ideas that have emerged throughout discussions in the series.

The four student-led sessions are your opportunity to generate and provoke debate amongst yourselves.

Full details in the Researcher Training Programme brochure embedded below (from p. 19).

METHODS AND METHODOLOGIES

Wednesdays, two-weekly – 16, 30 Oct; 13 Nov; 4, 18 Dec; 21 Jan; 5, 19 Feb; 18 Mar; 1 Apr
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are 1-2.30pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

Research in the real world has many challenges, one of which is the need to draw upon other fields of enquiry and adopt an inter-disciplinary approach. There are varieties of methods and methodologies across various arts, humanities, and social science disciplines including qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods approaches.

This is an introductory programme that will give postgraduate students a flavour of the expertise within the Faculty, and which is shared across arts, humanities and social sciences.

The main thrust of this series will carefully examine a selection of methods, from traditional interviewing and questionnaire design, to the many and varied contemporary methods that push the boundaries of research. These sessions assume no prior knowledge, and are designed to engage students in a workshop environment.

They are presented as stand-alones so that students can select the methods that are of interest to them.

Full details in the Researcher Training Programme brochure embedded below (from p. 22).

PRACTICE RESEARCH GROUP

Wednesdays, weekly – 15, 22, 29 Jan
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are 3-5pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

The Practice Research Group is for all students who use practice (such as design, art, media, architecture, writing or professional practices) in their research. Convened by Nick Duffy, we will meet three times, you are then encouraged to run the group yourselves.

15 Jan, 3–5pm
What is Practice-led Research?
This is an introductory session exploring different ways of conceiving and defining practice-led research. We will look at different examples of practice-led research and discuss these in relation to the institutional requirements of a practice-led PhD. We will also discuss ways of articulating the contribution to knowledge of practice-led research.

22 Jan, 3–5pm
Practice as Research with Dr Sam Moore
Sam Moore will talk about using creative methodologies in her practice-based research. Sam’s work is in animation, using documentary, collaboration, and often working across disciplines. Previous projects have included work about competitive sweet pea growing, HIV/AIDs in Uganda, the experience of having a multiple birth, sub-cellular pathogens, audio-visual synaesthesia and a knicker factory in Middleton.

29 Jan, 3–5pm
Two sides of the same coin: Linking practice and academic research or, How do you articulate the relationship between the creative and the critical?
What is the relationship between practice and research? How do we articulate this relationship and how do we integrate the often different discourses of the creative and the critical? In this session we will explore the murky field between practice and research by looking at different ways of writing academically about our practice and different ways of writing creatively about our scholarly research. The aim will be to generate creative and critical methods for fusing the two elements of a practice-led PhD.

Full details in the Researcher Training Programme brochure embedded below (from p. 25).

WRITING GROUPS

Myna Trustram is convening three writing groups. These groups focus on helping you write your thesis and they are experiential and exploratory, with a minimum of ‘this is how to do it’. After the group, you will be encouraged to run your own, student-led groups.

Wednesdays, weekly – 30 Oct; 13, 20 Nov; 4, 11, 18 Dec – 3-5pm
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are 3-5pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

Writing Group: An introduction to Doctoral Writing

We will write, talk and read. The group is designed to help you become a confident and creative writer of academic prose. The approach is experiential: you will draw on your practice whether as a historian, artist, theorist, curator, designer, sociologist and so on. The group will help you develop a writing style that meets the requirements of an academic thesis but that also expresses your own idiom and the particularities of your research. Likely themes we’ll cover are: ‘love the words’; academic writing; ways of reading; the literature review; voices.

You will need to write regularly both inside and outside the sessions and to come to all of them. Once the group has finished, you are encouraged to continue meeting together.

If you have questions or would like to book a place (by 21 October), contact Myna.

Wednesdays, weekly – 18, 25 Mar; 1 Apr – 3-5pm
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are 3-5pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

A Writing Group for Third Year Students

The final months of preparing your thesis can be particularly demanding. The commonly-used notion of ‘writing up’ implies a mechanical task of putting down what you have discovered. It is rarely like this. As you approach the final stages of your research, you need to find a way to manage your data, the writing task and yourself.

The approach will be peer learning and experiential. We will address the specific questions you have about writing the thesis and you will share your writing with others for critical discussion. Guidance will be offered, but essentially you will learn together through sharing the pleasures and the difficulties of the final months. I’ll expect you to come to all three sessions and encourage you to continue meeting together once the formal group has finished.

If you have questions or would like to book a place (by 9 March), contact Myna.

Wednesdays, weekly – 29 Apr; 6, 13 May – 10am-12pm
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are 10am-12pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

A Writing-with-Objects Group

These three experimental sessions will use objects from the Special Collections Museum to help you develop a distinctive writing style. It will suit students from any arts and humanities discipline and from any year of study. We will look, touch, talk and write. I will ask you to choose objects that resonate with your research and through that object to practice paying creative attention to the world of physical objects and language.

If you have questions or would like to book a place (by 20 April), contact Myna.

Full details in the Researcher Training Programme brochure embedded below (from p. 27).

DIGITAL RESEARCH

Core Skills: Wednesday, 27 Nov, 10am-12pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

The Digital Researcher
This session provides an overview of the challenges of undertaking research in an increasingly digital world – from building academic profiles, research contexts and networks to making the most of digital media tools, services and work-flows. The session also includes a comprehensive guide to creating a ‘Postgraduate Profile’ on news.harts.online – a requirement for all students who have completed their Application to Register (RD1).

Wednesdays, weekly – 15, 22, 29 Jan
Unless otherwise indicated, all sessions are 5-6.30pm, R.G.12, Righton Building

This series of three sessions aims to prepare students for the challenges of doing research in an increasingly digital world – by focusing on three areas where the digital has had significant impact:

  • Working with Digital Media
  • Research Context and Networks
  • Digital Arts and Humanities

Full details in the Researcher Training Programme brochure embedded below (from p. 28 & 34).

Lewis Sykes, HARTS Online Coordinator, also offers training, support and technical advice on: online documentation, working with social media, setting up and structuring practice blogs and online research journals. You can book a one-hour session with him on Wednesdays, 11am or 3pm on the sign-up sheet outside room 1.11 in the Righton Building (from 9 Oct).

If you would like to chat with Lewis but can’t make these particular slots, arrange an alternative time. He can be found on the first floor of the Righton Building most Wednesdays, 10am–5pm during term times, or drop him an email – L.Sykes@mmu.ac.uk.

RESEARCH TRAINING PROGRAMME 2019-20 BROCHURE

RTP 2019-20 SCHEDULE - AT A GLANCE

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TERM 1

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TERM 2

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TERM 3

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