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Research

How we support our researchers

As an internationally renowned research university, we're committed to ensuring that when you join our thriving Queen Mary community, you'll be given the tools and training you need to work at the highest level. We aim to help you develop into a successful, independent researcher, who can make a difference in the world.

Our global reputation attracts students from over 160 countries. We believe that when researchers with these varied experiences, perspectives and disciplines interact, ground-breaking work can be achieved. We do our utmost to ensure you make the most of these opportunities.

Strategic career advice and support

We want to help you build a successful career beyond Queen Mary. Our Careers and Enterprise team can offer you tailored advice and guidance on your next steps, whether that’s in further research or outside academia.

There are dedicated consultants within the Careers and Enterprise team who work with the Researcher Development  team to provide career development opportunities for PhD students and postdocs of all disciplines through courses and one-to-one support.

Taking care of your health and wellbeing

We pride ourselves on being a welcoming, inclusive community. Your health and wellbeing are central to the success of your work.

To ensure that you have the best possible experience, we provide a great deal of mental health and wellbeing support for our PhD students.

We are the only University in the UK to provide a facilitated support group for PhD students (run by the Researcher Development team in collaboration with our Advice and Counselling Service).

We also provide a range of wider student support services, including our:

Proud of our diversity

Queen Mary was voted ‘the most inclusive Russell Group university’ by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021 and we’re very proud of our brilliant, diverse community.

We hold 12 inclusion and diversity awards, including an institutional Silver Athena SWAN award and six Bronze and four Silver Athena SWAN awards at school/institute level. In addition, we also host the WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) initiative, a networking platform for female students and academic staff to provide mentoring on managing careers and tackling issues such as work-home balance.

We also run several schemes to help female researchers become leaders in their field, in addition to UNIque, a women’s development programme for early career researchers, open to female PhD students and postdoctoral staff. We are also Stonewall Champions.

We see these awards as a spur to further action, not as ends in themselves. Queen Mary has always been a progressive, campaigning university and we are committed to increasing the number of women and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) academics working in senior positions.

PhD student support and guidance

As a PhD student at Queen Mary, you also benefit from a range of support that’s carefully matched to your objectives.

Supervision that’s tailored to your needs

Talented researchers need excellent supervisors. At Queen Mary, we devote a great deal of thought and care to ensure that you have the very best academic support tailored to achieving your research goals.

Our supervisory training programme provides our supervisors with continual professional development. This ensures that you gain the maximum benefit from their skills, knowledge and expertise.

When you join us, you’ll be provided with a team of at least two supervisors who are experts in your field. You’ll acquire a sophisticated knowledge of research methodology while also gaining advice on planning your research goals and managing your work.

We’re committed to helping you prepare for the wider world of work, and will help you to think strategically about your career – whether that’s within or outside academia.

Find out more about applying for a PhD with us or explore our Doctoral College.

Outstanding training for PhD students

We support excellence and innovation in research practice, providing you with personal, professional and career development opportunities that are designed to help you to excel.

Our flexible – and free – training programmes meet (and exceed) the exacting requirements of the UK Research Councils, and the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education.

We provide a range of training opportunities and support for you to become a complete, rounded researcher:

  • Your School or Institute provides subject-specific training in the methods and techniques you need to conduct your research.
  • The Researcher Development Team within the Queen Mary Academy provide you with a skills development programme, covering topics such as getting started with your PhD, working with your supervisor, as well as a range of support in writing, applying for funding, presentation skills and wellbeing. Doctoral students who complete this recommended amount of training are also awarded the Queen Mary Diploma in Researcher Development (QDip) alongside their PhD.
  • Queen Mary’s Doctoral College presents a lively interdisciplinary programme of events and activities to develop networks within our thriving postgraduate community. The team also promotes a supportive PhD culture with events such as training days organised around academic networking, public engagement, and employment for Year 1, 2 and 3 students.
  • Research Council Doctoral Training Centres and Doctoral Training Partnerships provide specialist and highly advanced research training courses, many of which are run in conjunction with our partner universities.
  • If, in a rare instance, you need specialist training that isn’t available at Queen Mary, you may apply to the Doctoral College’s Postgraduate Research Fund for funding towards your training costs. You can also apply to the Doctoral College Initiative Fund and Graduate Festival Fund to run or design training of your own.

If you are a PhD student who teaches, Queen Mary Academy’s Education and Learning team will also provide you with plenty of support to ensure you get the very most from the experience.

Mentoring

We offer a Researcher Mentoring Scheme to all of our PhD students.

We are also partners in the B-MEntor scheme, where senior academics from four London institutions mentor BAME academic staff.

Create your own international network

We encourage all our PhD students to explore the international research community and take every opportunity to extend your research network overseas.

Whether you want to present at a highly regarded international conference, or visit research groups elsewhere, our Postgraduate Research Fund can provide financial support to help get you to international conferences and events.

Our research students are also a key part of the wider Queen Mary student community. We encourage you to make the most of the opportunities offered by Queen Mary Students’ Union. From sports and societies to advocacy and volunteering, we hope you’ll enjoy discovering all that life at Queen Mary has to offer you.

Research staff support

Queen Mary is committed to providing a thriving work environment in which our brilliant research staff can flourish. 

We are committed to implementing the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers and have demonstrated this commitment by holding the HR Excellence in Research Award since 2012.

Discover more about the many ways our research staff benefit from the support provided by our colleagues across the university on the Researcher Development website.

Outstanding research training

You will be part of a thriving community within your discipline, surrounded by experts in their fields. We support excellence and innovation in research practice, providing you with personal, professional and career development opportunities that are designed to help you to excel.

Your School or Institute provides subject-specific training in the methods and techniques you need to conduct your research. In addition, we offer flexible – and free – training events and workshops for postdoctoral and early-career researchers, provided by various teams across Queen Mary and overseen by the Researcher Development team within the Queen Mary Academy.

These initiatives support research staff of all disciplines with the skills they need to progress in whatever career they choose, such as writing, presentation skills, media awareness, public engagement, and networking, as well as specific skills important in academia, such as applying for funding and teaching.

Mentoring

We offer a Researcher Mentoring Scheme to all of our postdoctoral researchers, teaching fellows and clinician-researchers, irrespective of your current contract type. Researchers can choose to participate in either one-to-one, small group or researcher-led mentoring.

Research staff can also act as mentors for PhD students, developing important skills that will benefit them as they progress in their careers.

We are also partners in the B-MEntor scheme, where senior academics from four London institutions mentor BAME academic staff.

Individual support

In addition to the support that you will get from the world-class researchers in your School or Institute, there is bespoke support available from the Researcher Development team to help you with your personal and career development, your writing, and any funding applications you submit.

Researcher networks

There are a range of existing networks for researchers across Queen Mary that support groups within specific disciplines, career stages, and other characteristics. Human Resources support several staff-wide networks, and we can also support you in creating new networks.

Taking care of your health and wellbeing

We pride ourselves on being a welcoming, inclusive community. Your health and wellbeing are central to the success of your work.

To ensure that you have the best possible experience, we provide a great deal of mental health and wellbeing support.

We also provide a range of wider student support services, including our:

Find out more