Research Environment

The SELCS Research Environment includes Libraries, Facilities, Research Spaces, Seminars and Training.

Research Environment

UCL Flaxman Gallery
Libraries and facilities

UCL library and its special collections contain 76,718 items in Modern Languages onsite (including one of the largest Dutch libraries outside of the Low Countries, a resource of national importance) and 22,300 offsite materials; 248 print journals; numerous e-journals and e-book packages from Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, De Gruyter, JSTOR and Taylor & Francis (Routledge); 42 databases in Modern Languages, 10 in Translation Studies and 25 in Film Studies, and a further 720 databases covering 51 subjects to support the interdisciplinary research of our staff. A subject liaison librarian and a specialised Open Access team also provide dedicated assistance to our staff and research students, including training and funding for the publication of OA journal articles and monographs. We access other world-class libraries (Senate House and British Libraries, and those of sister institutions such as Birkbeck and King’s) within walking distance of campus. Our Transcluster, a suite of 60 IT stations located over 5 rooms in Foster Court and equipped with cutting-edge eye-tracking equipment, has been developed specifically for CenTraS and is available to staff and research students.  

UCL Student Centre

We convene 10 regular language or subject-specific seminars in SELCS-CMII and contribute to and organize regular seminars elsewhere at UCL and in the wider academic community. These include events run by the Viking Society for Northern Research events, CEME, the Queer Space Reading Group, the African Studies Research Seminar and collaborations with the British Psychological Society, the London-wide research network in Comparative Literature (LINKS) and the annual, international summer school Hermes: Consortium for Literary and Cultural Studies. Our historians lead 3 seminars at the Institute for Historical Research: the Modern German History Seminar (Jeff Bowersox & Mark Hewitson), Modern Italian History (Carlota Ferrara degli Uberti) and the Low Countries History Seminar (Uli Tiedau).
Further intellectual support is provided through the Research Clinic, a regular ‘problem-solving’ workshop to share knowledge and best practice; interdisciplinary research workshops and roundtables (three per term) to support the work of our research clusters; and a critical theory reading group.


Research students

Foster Court
Facilities and training

SELCS-CMII research students have a screening room in Foster Court and research student common room in Gordon Square containing study space and networked computers. They also have access to workspaces in the new UCL Student Centre, others at the Institute for Advanced Studies and elsewhere across campus, as well as at the UCL Hub at Senate House. 
In addition to UCL’s Doctoral Skills Development Programme, we offer our research students specialized training through a fortnightly schedule of research skills seminars in SELCS-CMII on a wide range of topics including thesis writing, conference presentation and organization, career skills and planning; weekly ‘Shut up and write’ sessions; a ‘How to write a journal article in 12 weeks’ programme; and a PGR reading group. Our research students may also access training run by the University of London, such as the London Screen Studies Group, which offers monthly support for screen-related research, including methods training and practice led research support. All students may address any subject-specific gaps in their knowledge or skills by auditing MA or MSc modules in the School or elsewhere at UCL (CenTraS students may take Professional Courses in the centre at reduced rates) and additional language tuition is available at Centre for Languages and International Education or through LAHP. Our research students have a good track record of success in applications for funding from the AHRC-LAHP International Placement scheme, allowing them to pursue research at international archives such as the Library of Congress.

UCL Student Centre

All research students are encouraged to participate in research seminars across and outside SELCS-CMII (in networks including the London French Graduate Seminar, Open City Docs Fest, the London Intercollegiate Network for Comparative Studies, the Hermes Consortium, and the Bloomsbury Gender Network). Our students contribute significantly to our vibrant research environment through organization of the graduate Society for Comparative Cultural Inquiry, which meets fortnightly and runs an annual conference, attracting an international roster of speakers and participants (with students forming the organising committee, speaking at or attending the conference). Our research students have also developed two online journals: Tropos and Phanes: Journal for Jung History, a multilingual open access peer-reviewed journal. We can provide funding for our students to organize and/or attend other conferences.