School of Mathematical Sciences

Current PhD students


Welcome to the Postgraduate Research (PGR) website. Here you will find information for PGR students currently studying in the School of Mathematical Sciences and their supervisors. As a member of the School of Mathematical Sciences we look forward to your ongoing contribution to our vibrant research culture. Please note that there is a SMS PhD Handbook 2018-19 [PDF 1,742KB] which provides more detail on many of the topics on this website.

Key staff responsible for the delivery of the PhD programme

  • The Director of Postgraduate Research Studies (PGRD): Dr Xin Li. Dr Li has overall responsibility for the School of Mathematical Sciences PhD programmes.
  • The School is divided into 6 Research Groups: The Heads of Group monitor student progression and the quality of PhD supervision in their groups.
  • The Postgraduate Research Programmes Officer: Katie Hale. Katie is based in the School Office, Room CB307, Queens’ Building and can help you with any general administrative queries you encounter during the course of your studies.
  • The Education Manager: Simon Rawstron. Simon’s role involves managing the teaching and learning strategy of the School of Mathematical Sciences, which includes postgraduate research matters.
  • The Student Support Officer: William Ng. The role of the Student Support Officer is to provide pastoral care to all students within the School of Mathematical Sciences, as well as being the link between students, the School and Queen Mary.

Contact information and office hours for all staff within the School of Mathematical Sciences can be found here.

Guide for Postgraduate Research Students and their Supervisors

You should ensure you familiarise yourself with our SMS PhD Handbook 2018-19 [PDF 1,742KB]

PhD Training and Mentorship Seminars

All PhD students in the School of Mathematical Sciences are welcome to take part in the Training and Mentorship seminars run by Dr Cecilia Busuioc and Dr Chris Joyner. These fortnightly meetings are tailored to the specific needs of Maths PhD students, and cover everything from teaching practice to professional development. For more information, please see the Seminar Website.

Learning Development

Learning Development works with students at any level from any subject discipline, undergraduate or postgraduate, to become more effective in their academic work. They can help with aspects of study including reading effectively, writing, exam technique, revision, note-taking, time-management, critical thinking, avoiding plagiarism, presentation skills and group work. Throughout the year they run one-to-one tutorials, drop-ins, retreats and various workshops. They also host the Royal Literary Fund (RLF) Writing Fellows. For more information on the range of services they offer, and to book a tutorial or workshop, check

Navigating our website

If you have just started, or are about to start, your PhD studies try navigating to "Student induction" on the menu to the left. "Key dates" sets out the main events of the calendar at a glance. "Assessment and Progression" presents only an overview of the topic, so make sure you refer to the SMS PhD Handbook 2017-18 [PDF 1,546KB](Handbook 2017-18) for further detail. Our "Forms" section includes copies of, or links to, all of the forms which you are required to complete for various purposes. This section will be useful for you, your supervisor and your assessors throughout your studies.

The Postgraduate Research Committee

The Postgraduate Research Committee meets formally twice a year. It is chaired by the Director of Graduate Studies. The other members are the School’s Heads of Research Groups, the Director of Research, the Deputy Director of Graduate Studies, the Head of School, the PGR Admissions team and postgraduate research student representatives. The PGR Programmes Officer acts as secretary to this committee. The remit of this Committee covers every aspect of the teaching and training of postgraduate research students, from office accommodation to annual assessment procedures. Decisions concerning the progression of individual students are delegated to the Director of Graduate Studies.

The PhD Forum

The PhD Forum gives our PhD students a platform to raise issues or concerns directly with members of senior management. These meetings take place twice a year, once in the autumn and once in the spring. All students are invited (and encouraged!) to come to these meetings, or to raise issues with the Postgraduate Representatives (for details of current representatives, please see the PGR Handbook).

If things go wrong

If you have a problem, the most important thing to do is to talk to someone about it. This someone could be your first or second supervisor, your Postgraduate Tutor, the Director of Postgraduate Studies, the Head of School, the Student Support Officer, any other member of staff, your student representative or another research student. If the problem is one you prefer not to discuss with a member of the School, you can obtain help and advice directly from the Queen Mary Advice and Counselling Service.

Templates for PhD theses

Students who require a LaTeX template for their thesis are advised to adapt this template created by E. Nalson, a former QMUL PhD student. Note that the thesis template may require modifications to meet current Queen Mary standards. Please check the Research Degrees Office thesis requirements to find out more.