Ian Lyne, AHRC Associate Director of Programmes. AHRC DTP/CDT Launch

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AHRC DTP/CDT Launch Conference on the 29th January 2014

Ian Lyne AHRC Associate Directorof Programmes, discusses common issues and reflections

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Ian Lyne, AHRC Associate Director of Programmes. AHRC DTP/CDT Launch

  1. 1. AHRC Doctoral Training Partnerships & Centres for Doctoral Training Launch Conference East Midlands Conference Centre 29 January 2014
  2. 2. Programme for the Day  AHRC’s Strategic Direction Professor Rick Rylance  Common Issues and Reflections from the Initial Meetings Dr Ian Lyne (Associate Director)  Communications Dr Philip Pothen (Head of Communications, AHRC) and Danielle Moore-Chick (Communications Manager, AHRC)  Looking Ahead Professor Mark Llewellyn (Director of Research, AHRC)  Interspersed with brief pitches by DTPs and CDTs
  3. 3. Common Issues and Reflections from the Initial Meetings Dr Ian Lyne Associate Director, AHRC 29 January 2014
  4. 4. Overview  A reminder of the context  Some common issues and queries from the initial meetings  Reporting and Monitoring
  5. 5. Context - BGP1 and BGP:CB • BGP1 awards made in 2009 covering 5 PG cohorts • BGP: CB awards made in 2011 covering 3 PG cohorts BGP1 BGP:CB Total number of BGP type 48 35 Number of consortia 1 10 Total number of ROs involved 49 49
  6. 6. Delivery Plan 2011-15 • AHRC will further develop its BGP funding model to support postgraduate research and training. We will make fewer awards and focus on centres of excellence where training and facilities are of the highest quality. • We will increase our expectation that PG training stimulates knowledge exchange and the interaction between postgraduate research and nonacademic agencies for all students.
  7. 7. AHRC Budget Context 2011-15 2011-12 2014-15 PG £44.1 million £42.6 million Total £99.9 million £98.4 million % of total AHRC 44% 43%
  8. 8. Doctoral Training Partnerships & Centres for Doctoral Training  11 DTPs and 7 CDTs awarded  A total investment of £163m; equating to 495 studentships at average of 3.5 years each, over five years.  A total of 75 HEIs involved, and 155 non-HEI partners  Diversified training and skills development… with ‘Student Development Funding’ and ‘Cohort Development Funding’
  9. 9. Doctoral Training Partnerships & Centres for Doctoral Training • Coherence of vision and strategy for A+H research training within different contexts • Increased flexibility of funding profile • Enhancement of ‘partnership’ ….  within, between and across ROs;  with cultural, creative and civic partners;  and with the AHRC as funder
  10. 10. Common Issues and Queries
  11. 11. Governance • A variety of governance models were being used – and it is natural for these to vary according to nature and size of the DTP or CDT. • But typically an Academic Director, a lead Administrator • A management team – for more day-to-day running, chaired by the Director. • A steering group to provide strategic oversight, not chaired by the Director. • Reporting into existing University or Faculty PGR committees
  12. 12. Recruitment • At many of the initial meetings people raised concerns about students applying to multiple DTPs/CDTs, and declining an offer late in the day. • Some suggested that all DTPs/CDTs move to a common recruitment timetable. We would leave this for Directors to discuss amongst themselves. • If a student does decline late in the day, you do not lose the funding by not recruiting – ie you can simply carry the funding forward as part of the training grant flexibility.
  13. 13. Student Development Fund • A rich variety of ideas and plans for what this might be used for. • Most DTPs / CDTs are looking to enable a student-driven and responsive approach with at least part of the funding. • Activities funded from the SDF will often extend the period of a student’s funding award beyond 3 years. • Though some training costs drawn from SDF (e.g. for a short course) may not. • SDF funding must be linked to opportunities taken up by a individual AHRC funded student.
  14. 14. Student Development Fund • Use of SDF for Masters – we did see proposals for this, linked to assisting recruitment in specific areas. • Also examples of institutional funding being used to create a feeder route into PhD programmes. • Issues around the lack of public loan provision for Masters are very concerning, and together we need to think about how PhD programmes should evolve to take account of this. • Our current position is that there should be no automatic progression from Masters to PhD (ie no 1+3); PhD funding must be awarded competitively.
  15. 15. Cohort Development Fund • Plenty of exciting ideas for bringing students together from across a DTP/CDT. • For example, student conferences, student-led subject workshops, etc. • Activities that you fund from the CDF should be related to cohort activities, rather than costs relating to individual student training (eg travel to a partner organisation, or co-supervisor)
  16. 16. Supervisors • At a lot of the meetings, it became clear what a key role supervisors would need to play in helping students navigate the opportunities available. • And therefore DTP/CDTs need to have clear plans as to how they are going to engage and inform student supervisors.
  17. 17. Institutional Commitment • Some very generous statements of institutional co-funding • Often in the form of studentship 50:50 funding arrangements, but also sometimes in relation to explicit funding of the Director’s post, or other support posts. • We will seek to capture information on institutional funding committed to studentships or incurred on support each year. • The form of institutional commitment can change, provided there is no sense of an institution not standing by the commitments made in the application.
  18. 18. Monitoring and Reporting
  19. 19. Monitoring and Reporting • Reporting to AHRC should build on a DTP/CDT’s own internal reporting and monitoring plans. • We will draw student data from JeS, and analyse: • Subject spread • Diversity patterns • Funding of Masters • DTPs and CDTs should also establish their own monitoring arrangements, including equal opportunities monitoring for applicants, recruitment and student opportunities.
  20. 20. Monitoring and Reporting (Yr 1) • Annual report to AHRC in January each year. • First report in January 2015 will ask you to report on progress, and experiences from the first recruitment round (i.e. for October 2014 starters). • We will ask you to collate information on university and partner co-funding commitments made as part of the October 14 cohort. • We will ask you to reflect on any immediate patterns you perceive in recruitment (by HEI, discipline), and if these vary from expectations.
  21. 21. Monitoring and Reporting (Yr 1) • Provide a brief overview of your own review processes (eg feedback from partners or students), and any changes that you have made to your plans or operations. • If you are considering significant change to what you set out in your application, though, please contact AHRC at an early stage. • Also an opportunity for you to provide any evidence of the wider impact or influence your DTP / CDT is having. • And also a brief outline of the major events or plans for the year.
  22. 22. Monitoring and Reporting (Yrs 2- ) • In the second and subsequent years (e.g. January 2016 onwards) the report will follow the same format:  ie we will ask you to report on progress, and experiences from the previous recruitment round (e.g. for Oct 15 starts).  Information on university and partner co-funding commitments made as part of that cohort.  Any immediate patterns you perceive in recruitment (by HEI, discipline), and if these vary from expectations.  Etc • We will also ask you to report on SDF- and CDF-funded student activities over the previous academic year (e.g. 14-15, ie building on your own monitoring of the programme across that year).
  23. 23. Monitoring and Reporting (Yrs 2- ) • We would also like you to highlight some interesting examples of SDF and CDF over the previous year. • Short case studies (max 1 or 2 of each for every five students)… so that we have a good stock of examples to illustrate and promote the richer postgraduate training we are funding. • Again, we assume that DTP/CDTs will wish to compile these for their own reporting and promotional purposes anyway.
  24. 24. Monitoring and Reporting • You need to ensure that JeS data on students is returned to us by November after each intake. • We will collate the student data nationally and provide an overview analysis to you in the early new year. • We will together reflect on any emerging patterns or issues at the annual Directors conference – partnership with AHRC means that we take joint responsibility for health of disciplines.
  25. 25. Communications • There was frequent mention of the value of Directors and lead Administrators being able to share ideas or issues, seek advice, etc. • We would like to propose that Directors and Administrators selforganise this, without AHRC involvement. • At any time, of course, you can contact us for advice, and we will email all Directors / Administrators if we think an issue is likely to be of wider interest.
  26. 26. Communications • Please let us have dates of senior steering group / management group meetings, so that we can schedule potential dates to visit. • Equally, let us have dates of any major student events, where we might be able to come along. • Annual Directors Conference: would April / May be a good time? • Reflecting on any issues that have come up for current students / activities, etc • Reflecting on national recruitment patterns, and drawing on any further experience from the current recruitment process.
  27. 27. Thank you Comments or Questions?
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