PhD Timeline

The majority of a MPhil/PhD student's time is taken up with research. However, there are certain other requirements that you need to complete at various points before you can submit your PhD thesis.

The following is intended to highlight what these are and when you should do them. 

Throughout your studies: 

  1. Meet regularly with your supervisor and conduct research.
  2. Attend relevant seminars, in particular the Postgraduate seminar. 
  3. Keep your Research Log up to date.  
  4. Log all courses and training activity via the Skills Development page. 

Year 1

  • Attend 4 LTCC courses. (These are graduate level mathematics courses intended to broaden your mathematical education.) 

Year 2

  • Give a short talk at the postgraduate seminar on your research (in month 13 or 14 of your studies). 
  • Write an upgrade dissertation. 
  • Arrange an "upgrade viva" with your supervisor in order to upgrade from MPhil to PhD status. (This should happen between 12 and 18 months after starting at UCL.) 

Years 3 & 4

  • Submit exam entry form at least 4 months before you intend to submit your thesis. 
  • Ensure that your supervisor submits the examiner nomination form for which you will need to provide a "Thesis Template" (i.e. an abstract). 


All students are expected to obtain 20 skills points (equivalent to 2 weeks training) per year. Please note the link to "Departmental Training" when you log into the Skills Development Programme. You can obtain skills points for attendance at seminars, LTCC courses, teaching, marking, presentations, writing papers, attending Graduate School courses.