We have put together a list of the most frequently asked questions below. If you cannot find the answer to your question here, please try the Moodle handbook or contact us. Please always include your student number when you write to us, so that we can help you more quickly andefficiently.
MA Students FAQ
- Can I change my modules after the first week of term?
Once you have submitted your module choices on Portico you can no longer amend them yourself. If you need to add and/or delete a course, please contact Patrizia or Julia in the CMII office. Please note that after the end of the first week of term we only change modules in exceptional circumstances.
- How do I submit coursework?
All coursework for CMII / SELCS modules is submitted electronically via Moodle/Turnitin. We do not accept submissions via email or submissions of hardcopies. When you log into Moodle, you should see the link to the coursework submission site.
- The deadline for all assignments is 4pm on the day of the deadline. Occasionally Turnitin can be slow, so it is advisable to not leave your submission to the last second.
- We recommend submitting your coursework in .pdf format, especially if you use an Apple computer.
- Please only use your candidate identifier when submitting coursework, never use your name or student number.
If you are taking modules outside CMII/SELCS you must make sure that you follow the procedures of the relevant departments.
- When is the deadline for my coursework?
All deadlines are listed on the Moodle handbook for your degree programme. Occasionally a deadline is changed. You will be notified by email if this occurs.
- How can I apply for an extension?
Please fill out an Extenuating Circumstances Claims form and send it to your MA convenor (copy to Patrizia and Julia) together with any evidence you would like to submit in support of your claim. MA Convenors can grant extensions of up to one week only. Requests for longer extensions will be referred to the CMII/SELCS panel.
- I have had an accident or suffered an illness, a bereavement or another unforeseen circumstance which impacts my ability to study and/or submit coursework. What do I need to do?
In the first instance, please contact your MA convenor for advice. They will support you in determining the next steps. These might include submitting an Extenuating Circumstances form to ask for an extension on an assignment or submitting an Authorised Absence request form, if you need to take time off. They will also let you know what other support is available.
- I need to be away from UCL for more than 48 hours. What is the correct procedure?
If you are absent from UCL for more than two consecutive days, you must fill out an Authorised Absence Form and submit it to the convenor of your MA (copy Patrizia/Julia). Full-time MA students are required to be at UCL until they submit their dissertation, including during the summer months. Part-time students are expected to be at UCL half of the time.
- When will I get feedback on my work?
We aim to provide feedback within four weeks, but this may not always be possible. When marking is delayed, we will contact students to let them know. All marks are provisional until the Board of Exams which meets in October / November each year.
For more detailed feedback or to discuss feedback you have received further, please make use of the tutor's office hours which are listed on their website. If you cannot see them during their office hours, please contact them by email to make an appointment.
- Who do I contact if I have to miss a class due to sickness / an urgent appointment?
Please inform your course tutor that you will not be able to attend his/her class. CMII has a minimum attendance requirement of 70%, students who fall below that may be barred from taking the assessment. If you are worried about meeting the minimum attendance requirement, please contact your MA convenor as soon as possible.
If you anticipate being away from UCL for more than two consecutive days, please submit an Authorised Absence Request form to your MA convenor (copy to Patrizia/Julia).
- I forgot to sign the register – what do I do?
It is the student’s responsibility to sign the attendance register at the beginning of each class. If you have not signed the register, but have attended the class, please contact your course tutor immediately.
- Who is my personal tutor and how often should I see them?
At UCL, every student is provided with a Personal Tutor, who takes an interest in them as an individual and who offers guidance on their overall academic progress and personal and professional development.
At the beginning of the academic year your MA convenor will assign you a Personal Tutor who is a member of the academic staff at UCL. You will be expected to meet with your Personal Tutor at least five times during your studies.
If and when needed, the Personal Tutor provides a safety net for the students' physical, mental and emotional welfare; acting as a point of referral to avert crisis. However, the normal tutoring role provides facilitation and guidance on a more everyday basis, so that the student can independently integrate the academic and extracurricular elements of their learning and development.
If you don’t know who your personal tutor is, please contact Patrizia/Julia.
- What is the procedure regarding my dissertation? How do I find a supervisor? When do I need to do what?
Although you will mainly be working on your dissertation during the third term and the summer months, we encourage students to start thinking about their dissertations early on and to think about possible topics and supervisors. The next step is to approach potential supervisors and discuss your ideas with them. Many students ask tutors who have taught them on their degree to be their supervisors, but you may also approach other members of the UCL academic staff who work on related subjects. If you are unsure about whom to approach, please ask your MA convenor for advice.
We ask students enrolled in the MA African Studies, MA Comparative Literature, MA European Studies, MA European Culture and Thought, MA Health Humanities, MA Philosophy, Politics and Economics of Health and MA Film Studies to specify their choice of topic and the name of their supervisor by late February using the supervisor form which needs to be signed by their dissertation supervisor.
By the end of March we ask you to submit an abstract, using the abstract form.
CMII organises a dissertation presentation day which usually takes place in June. You will be asked to give a ten minute presentation in front of your peers and some academic staff members and to answer questions about your work. This presentation is a mandatory part of your programme.
Some MA programmes follow a different schedule. Please contact the people listed below for further information
MA Gender, Society and Representation – please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
MA Early Modern Studies – please contact email@example.com
MA Translation, Theory and Practice – please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
- I study part-time. When will I write my dissertation?
Part-time students usually submit their dissertation in their second year of study. Students on a flexible programme usually submit their dissertation in their final year.
- Is there a dedicated space just for postgraduate students?
The CMII Common Room is available for CMII MA students. It is located on the basement floor of 33-35 Torrington Place. This room is equipped with a kitchenette. You will need a key card to access the building.
- How can I get help with academic writing?
The Writing Lab is a free service that aims to enhance students' writing and research skills. It is available for all undergraduate and Masters students across the Joint Faculties of Arts and Humanities and Social and Historical Sciences.
- Where can I get Career Advice?
Whether you know what you want to go into after UCL or haven’t got a clue where to start, UCL Careers can help you Find your Future. Last academic year, we held around 600 events and over 7800 one-to-one appointments.
As a taught postgraduate student you have access to:
- Masters QuickFix! Sessions: one-hour lunchtime careers talks, to help enable Masters students to plan and develop their own career. Sessions include: Effective Applications; Find and Fund a PhD; PhD Applications; PhD Interviews; Planning Your Job Hunt; Succeeding at Interviews and Assessment Centres and Using Social Media With Impact. These sessions run every October, January and June.
In addition to this, all UCL students have access to:
- Short 15-minute guidance sessions
- CV and application checking
- Practice interviews
- Assessment centre practice
- Employer events
- Jobs, internships or placements
- Careers fairs
- Sector-themed weeks of events
- Skills4Work Programme
- Are there volunteering opportunities?
UCL has the one of the biggest volunteering departments in the UK – with over 400 different projects to choose from – so make the most of it whilst you're here!
As a SELCS student, volunteering is a great way to learn new skills and to gain experience of working with different types of people. You'll get plenty of support and advice from both the Volunteering Services Unit and the student-run Volunteering Society. Here's what they do: Volunteering Services Unit
- Provide a weekly newsletter packed with new opportunities
- Give support and advice to students and staff
- Run our Student Led Projects programme
- Host an online directory of all our opportunities
- Send targeted roles to your department
- Advertise one-off events
- Manage the Voluntary Sector strand of UCL’s Global Citizenship Programme
- Run an annual Awards Ceremony to recognise volunteers
- Run amazing socials and charity fundraising events
- Provide information on volunteering abroad
- Run an annual International Volunteering Fair
- Have regular meetings to meet fellow volunteers and steer the society
The Next Step...
- I feel overwhelmed, what can I do?
For practical questions and support regarding your programme of study, please contact Patrizia and Julia. Patrizia also acts as Deolo for postgraduate students and can be contacted for information and advice on UCL's Equal Opportunities policies and practice.
The Student Centre is part of UCL's Student Support and Wellbeing services and offers information and support to students enrolled on programmes of study at UCL and UCL alumni.
There are also lots of resources available to students who feel stressed, anxious or down during their studies at UCL. Student psychological services offers different types of support, including a free phone helpline, short-term individual counselling and psychotherapy.
- Wow strict is the word limit?
When you submit assessed coursework, you are required to state how many words you have written. MS Word has a facility for counting words, as do all other popular word-processing programmes. You must keep within the word limit prescribed on the CMII webpages and Moodle sites for specific courses. If you do not, you will be penalized. When you submit your work electronically, Turnitin may cite a higher figure than MS Word etc. Please do not be alarmed by this; provided that you have cited your word count at the beginning or end of your essay, we shall assume that this is the one you wish to submit.
UCL's rules for penalizing overlength assessed course work, including dissertations, are set out in Section 3.1.7 of the Examinations Regulations. These rules may be summarized as follows:
- Assessed work should not exceed the prescribed word count.
- Assessed work that is deemed to exceed the prescribed word count by more than 10% will be awarded a mark of 0%; the assessment will, however, be considered 'complete'.
- For work that exceeds the upper word limit by less than 10% the mark will be reduced by ten percentage marks; but the penalised mark will not be reduced below the pass mark, assuming the work merited a pass. There is no tolerance range.
- There is no penalty for under-length essays, but you are advised not to go too much under the word limit as you may risk not covering your topic in sufficient detail.
- The word count includes footnotes, but excludes the bibliography and your title page, and any acknowledgments you may wish to add. It includes quotations, but not the translation of quotations in square brackets. It does not include the abstract, words in tables, pictures, graphs and similar supporting materials. You are allowed to include an appendix with relevant primary material. This appendix is also excluded from the word count.
Research Students FAQ
- How can I apply for funding to attend a conference / do extra research?
CMII has limited funding to enable its Graduate Students to carry out their research and attend conferences. Students wishing to apply for this funding should complete the form bellow and send it to Graduate Tutor Lee Grieveson.
CMII PGR Funds Form
The links below provide information for UK, EU and overseas Master's and research students, including further details on the scholarships, awards and bursaries which are available.
- Where can I find information about skills training?
The Doctoral Skills Development Programme is open to all postgraduate research students at UCL. The purpose of the programme is to give you the opportunity to expand your generic research skills and personal transferable skills. These skills are intended to help your research at UCL and also to enhance your life skills and employability. Transferable skills training for researchers is an important part of UCL's research strategy and the QAA Quality Code for Higher Education.
- I'm interested in teaching - what do I need to do?
CMII endeavours to assign some teaching to its postgraduate research during their second-, third-year of study and, if appropriate, during their ‘writing-up’ year. Only exceptionally are first-year research students asked to teach. Part-time students may begin teaching in their third year. Teaching can be of language or content courses; the Writing Lab also has positions for postgraduate research students.
Positions are advertised as they arise by the Postgraduate Officer via email to all CMII postgraduate students (irrespective of their departments). Opportunities will be advertised on the Faculty website and on the 'Careers and Volunteering' forum. Normally, the advertisement asks students to submit a CV and, if the applicant is shortlisted, to attend an interview.
- I have taught / done work for CMII - how can I get paid?
If you are a current member of staff, please fill out a Form 6 and return it to Julia.
If you are not a current employee, please fill out a Form 7 and a P46 and send it to Julia. We also need to see your passport and visa (if required) and take a photocopy of it, so please come to our office once you have completed teaching/marking.
- What is the Research Log and why do I need to use it?
The Log has been prepared to assist you throughout your degree programme at UCL. It provides a framework for recording details related to your graduate research programme, scheduled supervisory meetings and activities concerning the development of academic and keys skills. Your Log will also help you to assess your progress and to plan and chart evidence of the development of academic and discipline specific skills and key skills. The Research Log is monitored by supervisors and periodically reviewed by the Programme Director during the student's period of study. Completion of the various stages of the Log is a criteria of the upgrade from MPhil/PhD and final award of the PhD.
The Doctoral School offers an introduction course to familiarise new students with the use of the Research Log.
Links and Resources
- Funding for Conferences (Research Students)
- Information for Tier 4 visa students
- Data Protection Guidelines for Research Students