Academic Manual

Faculty Graduate Tutors

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Faculty Graduate Tutors

Contact: Ben Colvill, Senior Executive Officer (Doctoral School)

Policy

Foreword

Each faculty shall have a Faculty Graduate Tutor (FGT) appointed by the Dean, after consultation with the Pro-Vice-Provost of the Doctoral School. The Dean, by authority delegated by the Provost, is also the Faculty Graduate Tutor's line manager. The Faculty Graduate Tutor shall:

  • i) be an experienced member of the academic staff of UCL
  • ii) have satisfactorily completed any probationary period attached to his/her appointment;
  • iii) normally have previously undertaken the role of Departmental Graduate Tutor or equivalent role that demonstrates a thorough understanding of research student issues.
  • iv) have had significant previous experience of doctoral supervision as Principal Supervisor (defined as having taken a student all the way through to award)  

Honorary members of staff are not permitted to hold the role of FGT.  In instances where a member of staff retires during their time as FGT, the Dean and Pro-Vice-Provost of the Doctoral School will arrange for the role to pass to a suitably qualified colleague.

The Faculty Tutor has the overall responsibility for the general academic and pastoral oversight of students in the faculty and assists the Dean in all matters relating to Quality Management and Enhancement. The Faculty Graduate Tutor is expected to communicate regularly and liaise with the Faculty Tutor on all issues affecting graduate students. The Faculty Graduate Tutor has particular responsibility for graduate students, their programmes of study and supervision, funding arrangements for all graduate students, reporting on faculty graduate matters to the Doctoral School and representing the faculty on Research Degrees Committee (RDC). Regular liaison with Departmental/Divisional Graduate Tutors and Admissions Tutors and keeping them informed of Doctoral School and RDC issues, and issues relating to the taught graduate community is also a key function of the Faculty Graduate Tutor. 

Roles and Responsibilities

1. To exercise the general academic and pastoral oversight of all graduate students in the faculty in liaison with the Doctoral School, the Vice-Provost (Education and Student Affairs), and Student and Registry Services as appropriate.

2. To agree all Departmental/Divisional Graduate Tutor appointments with the Head of Department or Division as appropriate.

3. To meet all new Departmental/Divisional Graduate Tutors individually and discuss roles and responsibilities. 

4. To be conversant with UCL policies and procedures relating to the recruitment, admission and academic progress and pastoral well-being of the graduate student body. 

5. To act as the key contact between the faculty and the Pro-Vice-Provost of the Doctoral School.

6. “To liaise with the Dean (and Vice-Deans Research and Education as appropriate) in coordinating the faculty’s response to the annual Doctoral Planning Process.  To meet with the Pro-Vice-Provost of the Doctoral School to discuss the submission and the Doctoral School’s formal response, and to coordinate enhancements within the faculty in light of this response.

7. To communicate with the Faculty Tutor regarding issues affecting graduate students, and to be informed by the Faculty Tutor of such matters that may arise in key UCL committees. 

8. To liaise with the Dean, Faculty Tutor, Doctoral School, the Vice-Provost (Education and Student Affairs), the Registrar and the UCL Access and Admissions Office, as appropriate, in the operation of UCL and faculty admissions policies and to monitor the graduate admissions procedure so as to meet faculty quotas and targets and to conform with UCL policies, with particular reference to statistical patterns.

9. To ensure that the UCL Student Disability Services is consulted on all issues relating to the admission and progress of graduate students with disabilities, and ensure that faculty and departmental staff are aware of and comply with current legislation in this area.

10. To liaise with and advise the Publications and Marketing Services Unit in the Department of Communications and Marketing as to appropriate entries in the graduate prospectuses, departmental handbooks and other publications, so as to ensure, in conjunction with the Faculty Tutor and the Publications and Marketing Services Unit, consistent wording in common publicity across departments in the faculty. 

11. To participate in graduate student recruitment activities and events (Open Days, Fairs, Institutional Visits, etc.) organised by the Publications and Marketing Services, as required, and to ensure appropriate departmental representation at such events.

12. To assist in the promotion and monitoring of Quality Management and Enhancement for graduate students across the faculty.

13. To assist in the implementation of the Code of Practice for Graduate Research Degrees and to report to the faculty and the Doctoral School accordingly. 

14. To advise graduate students who are experiencing any difficulties (personal, financial, medical or academic) affecting their studies.

15. To liaise with the Vice-Provost (Education and Student Affairs) or his/her deputies on issues concerning the academic welfare of students following graduate taught degree programmes within the faculty.

16. To approve, on behalf of the Faculty Research Degrees Committee, applications from individual staff members to act as Supervisors, ensuring that all Supervisors undertake UCL’s mandatory Supervisor training; ensuring that the faculty maintains and updates the central list of approved Supervisors via UCL’s EROS system.

17. To consider and approve, on behalf of the Faculty Research Degrees Committee, Nominations of Examiners for all UCL research degree candidates registered in the faculty, in accordance with UCL regulations and procedures, liaising with Departmental Graduate Tutors and Student and Registry Services as necessary, and reporting as appropriate to RDC.

18. To consider and approve departmental Research Student Additional Fee Element Requests above £10,000.

19. In conjunction with the Dean and the Faculty Research Degrees Committee and/or Faculty Graduate Board of Examiners, to monitor:

(i) compliance with the Code of Practice for Graduate Research Degrees

(ii) numbers of registered graduate students in the faculty; 

(iii) research student progress, including use of the Research Student Log; 

(iv) the professional development of research students through the Doctoral Skills Development Programme; 

(v) upgrade rates from MPhil to PhD; 

(vi) research degree submission rates for the faculty; 

(vii) external Examiners' reports on PhD and Professional Doctorate students.

and to notify the faculty, the Doctoral School and the Registry, as appropriate, of any action required. 

20. To liaise regularly with Departmental/Divisional Graduate Tutors and Admissions Tutors and to keep them informed of Doctoral School and Research Degrees Committee issues, and issues relating to the taught graduate community. 

21. To serve as an ex officio Chair of the Faculty Research Degrees Committee, and an ex officio member of Faculty Graduate Board of Examiners (chairing when not chaired by the Dean or Vice-Dean of the faculty). 

22. To serve as an ex officio member of RDC and, as necessary, Student Complaints Panels.

23. To attend, or to nominate a representative to attend, the final Boards of Examiners meetings for taught graduate programmes (see regulations for Boards of Examiners for taught programmes, UCL Academic Manual, Chapter 4, Section 13: Boards of Examiners).

24. To advise students who are academically insufficient or who have failed major examinations as to their future action, and in accordance with UCL’s Academic Manual, suspend or exclude them from further registration at UCL, as appropriate.

25. To advise graduate students, as appropriate, on the procedures for student complaints as laid down in UCL's Academic Manual.

September 2017