Literatures, Languages & Cultures

Postgraduate Taught students

How to get the best out of the Personal Tutor system as a postgraduate taught student.

For postgraduate students, your Personal Tutor (PT) will be assigned to you at the start of your studies; you can find this information via MyEd.  During the taught part of your degree programme, you may schedule meetings with your Personal Tutor to help you settle in and support your development as a member of your subject area’s academic community.  You may also have one further scheduled individual meeting with your PT during the research/ dissertation component of your degree programme (as appropriate).

Note:  If you are not on campus (e.g. studying abroad for a period, or on placement) then your meetings may take place by telephone, live internet call, or a web conferencing application. Email exchanges are not considered to be meetings unless they take place within a pre-agreed timeframe to enable you to have a “conversation” (e.g. if you are overseas and emailing within a 24-36 hour period to take account of time differences).     

One-to-one meetings

As a taught postgraduate student, you should have at least two individual meetings with your Personal Tutor in the taught part of your degree programme and one individual meeting in the research part, i.e. while you are working on your dissertation.

  • Your Personal Tutor will contact you at the start of the academic year to invite you to meet.
  • Arrangements for the individual meetings will vary according to the requirements of your MSc programme. The meetings will usually take place by the end of Week 5 in Semesters 1 and 2, and by the end of June in the dissertation period.  
  • Additional ad hoc appointments can be requested by e-mail.
  • The focus of the individual meetings should be as follows:
    • Semester 1:  on how you are adjusting to postgraduate study, your academic interests, and the skills and attributes that you aim to develop.  Some programmes may also use the meeting to provide subject-specific feedback on your initial Research Skills and Methods assignment;
    • Semester 2:  on your academic progress and your initial ideas for your dissertation/final project;  on helping you to interpret and adopt the feedback from your assessed work from Semester 1;
    • Dissertation period:  on your progress on the dissertation and career/research plans.

Group or Programme meetings

In addition to one-to-one meetings, and other activities designed to support your development as a member of the academic community, at least two group or programme meetings will be organised during the year. You will be given detailed information about such meetings via e-mail and Learn, the University’s virtual learning environment. Group meetings will usually last around one hour.