We welcome applications to undertake research towards MPhil and PhD degrees in Dementia Studies.
Research at Worcester has grown significantly in the last 10 years as the University has expanded. As a research student you will join a vibrant student community in our Research School and become part of our dynamic research environment.
What will you study?
MPhil year by year
After receiving your application, we try to establish if we have the necessary expertise to supervise your project and we begin to form a supervisory team for you. This will normally consist of a Director of Studies (DoS), who will be your lead supervisor, and at least one other second supervisor, who will offer you additional support and guidance throughout your studies. If, following a successful interview, you are offered a place as a full-time student, your programme of study will look something like this:
You will have submitted a draft research outline with your application. In your first six months, you will be working towards submitting a more complete research proposal, we call this an RDB1 Proposal. You will be aided in preparing for this by engaging with a 20-credit masters level module RTP401: Developing and Managing Your Research, and by meeting with your supervisory team to discuss your progress. You will meet with your supervisory team for 30 hours a year and this can be face-to-face or via Skype. Students who have not taken a recent research methods module in a relevant area will normally undertake a second module in their first year, in research methods. At the end of each year, beginning with your first year, you will work with your supervisors on completing a progress report, which we call an RDB7.
In your second year, you will be collecting data and working on your research project, under the supervision of your supervisors through regular meetings. In your second semester you will take a module titled RTP402: Dissemination, Impact and Engagement, which will help you begin to think about these three core themes. You may at this point have research papers ready to publish and you may wish to attend conferences to present your research to other experts in your field. You will be able to apply to our Research Student Support Scheme for some funding for this purpose (LINK). Students normally undergo Transfer from MPhil to PhD towards the end of their second year. At Transfer (RDB2), you will submit one to two chapters of your thesis and deliver a presentation to a question panel of experienced researchers.
In your third and fourth year, you will be writing up your thesis and preparing for your viva voce examination. This is an oral exam with two external examiners and a chair. You can also request that your supervisor be present at the exam. The exam will take place after you have submitted your final thesis. After the exam, it is not unusual for the examiners to ask that some minor amendments be made to your thesis before the final award is confirmed and you will have additional time to do this. It is possible to complete the course in three years, but we have found that the majority of students do take four years to complete the course.
Students are allocated a pathway appropriate to their research experience and background.
Students without a previous research degree will normally be allocated Pathway 1. This means you will need to engage with all of the modules outlined above and undertake associated assignments. These modules will lead to the additional award of PG Cert in Research Methods at no additional cost.
Students with a previous research degree will normally be allocated Pathway 2 and this will mean they will not be required to engage with the taught elements of the course to the same extent as students on Pathway 1. We do still recommend that they attend all of the workshops, for example, but they would not need to submit the associated assignments. Students on Pathway 2 may request to switch to Pathway 1 at the start of their course, with approval of their supervisory team.
Regardless of Pathway, the Researcher Development team organize a range of workshops that all students will be invited to attend.
Where could it take you?
All research students must engage with the Researcher Development Programme (RDP), a core curriculum of training and development which provides them with the general and subject-specific knowledge, skills and behaviours to support them in the completion of their research degree. At the beginning of an MPhil/PhD degree, you will be allocated to one of two pathways depending on your experience and knowledge as a researcher. This will determine which elements of the programme are core and which are optional. At the beginning of the programme you will be required to complete a Training Needs Analysis (TNA) in conjunction with your Director of Studies. This identifies the training that you will need to undertake, in addition to the mandatory elements of RDP, in order to complete the programme and to become an effective researcher. This TNA is revisited at the beginning of each subsequent academic year. All students are offered a wide range of optional training workshops throughout the programme focused around the following themes:
- Developing and Managing Your Research
- Dissemination, Impact, Engagement
- Completing Your Research Degree
- Research Methodology Master classes
- Data Analysis
- Research Funding
- Wellbeing and Personal Effectiveness
- Careers and Employability
- Enterprise and Entrepreneurship
First or Upper Second Class Honours Degree or an approved equivalent award / or Research or professional experience which has resulted in appropriate evidence of achievement / or Postgraduate Masters Degree in a discipline which is appropriate to the proposed programme of study / or First or Upper Second Class Honours Degree or equivalent award in an appropriate discipline / or Research or professional experience at postgraduate level which has resulted in published work, written reports or other appropriate evidence of achievement.
The Association for Dementia Studies
The Association for Dementia Studies is a multi-professional university research centre with many years of experience in the field of person-centred dementia care and support. We make a cutting edge contribution to developing evidence-based practical ways of working with people living with dementia, their families, friends and carers that enable them to live well. We draw on and contribute to the international evidence base for person-centred dementia care. Using this evidence, we deliver education programmes that empower people to provide skilled, competent and compassionate care.
Our work influences policy change at a local, national and international level and changes practice on the front line. Our research informs practice and policy for people living with dementia, their families, and the professionals who support them. We work in partnership with organisations across the public, private and third sectors.
( https://www.worcester.ac.uk/courses/dementia-studies-mphilphd )