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The University of Southampton
Doctoral CollegePGR Handbook

Faculty Training

Core Training

All Faculties at Southampton must provide students with access to a core set of training which is outlined in Your Doctorate in the Handbook. The core training will be delivered by Faculties in a variety of ways, as outlined below.

Mandated University-level training

In addition, all new doctoral researchers must complete the following mandated training. Failure to complete successfully the mandated training below is a failure to meet the progression requirements and so will result in a failure to progress.

Postgraduate researchers commencing their studies in 2021/22 must complete the following by the time they undertake their Academic Needs Analysis:

Please note that you'll need to be logged into your Office 365 account in order to access the mandatory training page, which is hosted on the new PGR Development Hub SharePoint site.

Online training on data management will be provided by the Library and should be completed by all doctoral researchers commencing their studies in 2021/22 by the time of their first formal progression review.

Training for students involved in teaching or demonstrating

Any doctoral researcher involved with undergraduate teaching MUST complete the Orientation to Teaching and Demonstrating Steps 1 & 2 or a discipline-based equivalent. Details and booking instructions can be found here. Attendance data will automatically upload from GradBook to PGR Tracker/PGR Manager.

Southampton Business School

MANG7001 Qualitative and Quantitative Research Methods

Module Overview

This module aims to provide you with a sound understanding of research methodologies to design and execute relevant research with rigour in business, management and organisation studies. It offers an overview of a range of qualitative and quantitative research methods that are available in business and organisation studies and management science. We aim to inspire, encourage and support you for developing credible, relevant and rigorous research in your subject domains so that you can address societal challenges, business problems and organisational issues.

Learning objectives

The learning objectives include:

1) provide you with the knowledge of the different research methodologies and underpinning philosophical approaches that are available to carry out research in business and organisation studies and management science;

2) provide you with the knowledge of the research process in business and organisation studies and management science;

3) enable you to define coherent research questions supported by strong theoretical arguments to address specific research gaps in the theoretical debate that informs your own chosen research topic;

4) enable you to recognise the problems and limitations associated with certain research methods, instruments for data collection and techniques for data analysis;

5) enable you to make informed decisions on the most appropriate methodological choices to carry out your own research; 

6) prepare you to carry out your own research in business and organisation studies and management science; and

7) enable you to review and update your initial research proposal accordingly.

Learning outcomes

A) Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the paradigms deployed by qualitative and quantitative management research;
  • the limitations of existing research methods.
  • the main methods used in management research;

B) Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • develop yourself as critical thinkers and reflexive researchers to develop meaningful research problems;
  • develop data exploration skills;
  • develop data analysis skills.
  • critically assess the main types of contemporary business and management research methods;
  • review and update their initial research proposal and plan for their selection of research methodology;
  • develop data collection skills;

C) Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • reflect and set attainable objectives, priorities, action plans and schedules of work to achieve objectives (Planning & Organisation)
  • develop relevant research with rigour and make an impact on users of research (Engagement and impact)
  • collaborate with others (your supervisors, research participants etc.) (Collaboration)

Module Details

Semester: Semester 2

CATS points: 10

ECTS points: 5

Level: Level 8

Module Leader: Mine Karatas-Ozkan 

School of Mathematical Sciences

Subject related training

All PhD students are expected to develop a detailed training plan in consultation with their supervisory teams. This plan should be designed such that the student develops a broad understanding of their subject area as well as receiving advanced in depth training in their research topic. All academic training should be recorded on PGR Tracker.

iPhD students must successfully complete the taught component of the programme in order to progress. The structure of the taught component and the progression requirements are described in the programme specification documents.

The School is a member of several consortia of universities who have pooled their resources to provide instructional courses for their PhD students. A number of such courses are offered throughout the year using Visimeet software:

  • MAGIC - Mathematics Access Grid Instructional Courses: providing pure and applied mathematics courses over the Access Grid in our own dedicated Access grid Room in room 7D. Details here.
  • SEPnet (GRADnet/NExT)– The SEPnet graduate network brings together the strengths of nine universities in the South-East of England. Originally founded to bring together physics departments, SEPnet now includes all nine mathematics departments as associate members. The NExT institute offers theoretical courses relevant to students within the School, see details at NExT PhD.
  • Training for PhD students is also offered via residential courses, many of which are delivered in association with the UK research councils. Relevant courses include:
  • APTS - Academy for PhD Training in Statistics: providing residential week-long courses in postgraduate statistics. Details here.
  • NATCOR - National Taught Course Centre for Operational Research: providing residential week-long courses in operational research. Details here.
  • STFC organises its subject related training via summer schools; attendance at specific courses is mandatory for STFC funded students. Details can be found here.
  • Training offered by UKRI Centres for Doctoral Training.

A number of extended courses are taught specifically for research students in Mathematical Sciences (maths modules at level 7) and research groups offer short courses on advanced topics. The programme of courses taught may vary from year to year. PGR students may also take suitable courses from the MSc and MMath programmes, and students may obtain specialised training by following reading courses supervised by staff members. Students are expected to participate regularly in appropriate research seminars.

All students are expected to undertake subject related training activities such as presenting their work in internal and external seminars; preparing posters and delivering talks at conferences; attending appropriate conferences, advanced training schools and workshops. We would also encourage research students to take up opportunities for internships in relevant areas.


PGR students will be offered opportunities to assist with teaching. Teaching is assigned by the heads of the four divisions in Mathematical Sciences (Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, Operational Research, Pure Mathematics and Statistics) and by the module leads for the first year Maths for Engineering modules.

All PGR students who assist with teaching are required to complete the Orientation to Teaching and Demonstrating courses.

Transferrable skills training

All PGR students are required to complete induction activities as well as the university wide mandatory training, see details here.

As with academic training, students should develop a training plan for transferrable skills in consultation with their supervisors and this should be recorded on PGRTracker, together with the successful completion of each activity. This training plan may include courses offered to students across the university; a list of such courses can be found at Gradbook. Useful topics include communication skills; networking and working in teams; time management and data management.

PGR students may also wish to attend relevant courses on transferrable skills taught for MSc programmes in Mathematical Sciences. Examples of such courses include MATH6005 Introduction to Python; MATH6145 Presenting Reports and MATH6152 Statistical Computing. 

The School of Mathematical Sciences teaches transferrable skills within level 7 modules. Topics taught include:

  • Mathematical programming languages (R, Python, Matlab, Mathematica, GAP);
  • Use of software packages such as Excel and Adobe in mathematical contexts;
  • Scientific document preparation (LaTeX, Overleaf, Markdown, Tikz);
  • Good practice in coding (including the use of GitHub and version controls);
  • Preparation of scientific articles and theses in the mathematical sciences;
  • Preparation of posters and conference talks;
  • Outreach and public engagement for research in mathematical sciences.

PGR students are expected to participate regularly in such transferrable skills training.  

Students may also receive training in transferrable skills as part of the SEPnet, APTS, NATCOR, CDT and research council courses described above.

Pastoral and academic support

The first point of contact for all pastoral and academic issues should be students’ supervisors. Students requiring further pastoral and academic support can contact the postgraduate research coordinator (PGRC) of each division; the PGRCs are tutors for the PGR students. The current PGRCs are:

Queries related to programme requirements can be directed to the Doctoral Programme Director, Prof Jelena Grbic, Questions related to funding, duration of programme and registration can be directed to the FSS Graduate School office,

If PGR students have queries about their teaching duties, they and their supervisors should consult with the appropriate head of division:

Any unresolved issues can be brought to the management group in Mathematical Sciences via the Deputy Head of School Education (Dr David Gammack); the Deputy Head of School Research (Prof Jacek Brodzki) and the Head of School (Prof Marika Taylor).

Southampton Education School

Education Research Training Programme (RTP)

The Southampton Education School runs a Research Training Programme (RTP) for all its research students. Details of the programme for these workshops in the current academic year can be found at the end of this appendix. You can sign up for individual workshops via the Gradbook system.

Student researchers have different needs as far as research training is concerned: some will want to develop specific skills to enable them to reflect effectively on their past and present research practice, while others will need to develop a range of basic skills appropriate to a professional social science researcher. Following discussions with your supervisor(s) you should develop a research training plan that describes a ‘package’ of training appropriate to your needs.

Full-time and part-time PhD, iPhD and EdD students at any stage in the doctoral process may attend these workshops, especially where they form part of your agreed training plan, as determined during your individual needs analysis undertaken with your supervisors.

Many of the workshops in the Education School RTP form a part of the initial stages of the Integrated PhD programme, but all doctoral students are encouraged to participate actively in the RTP in order to familiarise themselves with techniques and methodologies beyond and outside the scope of their own research design. You may not be employing particular methods in your own research study, but an awareness of a wide range of research methods can support your ability to make use of the research published by others in your field.

Aims of the Education Research Training Programme

The RTP is intended as an introduction to various important aspects of research in education and to provide a secure theoretical foundation for supervised student research. The RTP does not encourage or equip students to undertake research without supervision. Close and continued contact between student and supervisor is absolutely essential.

The principal aims of the Research Training are to do the following:

  • facilitate and support the preparation and successful completion of research-based dissertations/theses;
  • prepare students for research in education, so that they are familiar with key research methods in educational research;
  • raise student awareness of alternative approaches and develop a technical language for discussion;
  • develop critical awareness of (and capacity to evaluate) the complexity of theories and explications within educational research;
  • give students knowledge of the basic principles of research strategy and design so that they can formulate researchable issues and construct effective research projects;
  • help students identify and develop appropriate methodological skills for conducting their own research;
  • create a supportive forum so that students can discuss with peers issues relating to postgraduate research.

Integrated PhD students will need to attend specific workshops as part of the set of core and optional modules during the first year of Integrated PhD. ‘Core’ modules are modules which must be taken and passed by all students on a particular programme. Where programme regulations specify, a student may be required to select a core module from within a group of possible modules. Once this module is selected, it then becomes core. For information on the core and compulsory elements of your Programme, please refer to the relevant section of your Course Description Document (CDD). IPhD students will also be required to undertake a transitional project, details of which are also included in the CDD.

The timetable and course details of workshops will be circulated to all doctoral students. General queries about the Education RTP should be directed to the Education RTP Coordinator (Professor Chris Downey, email: or the the Graduate School Office (Building 58, Room 2111, email: Queries regarding individual workshops should be made to workshop conveners.

Workshop Evaluation

At the end of each workshop, students are requested to complete the workshop evaluation questionnaire made available by the Gradbook system. Evaluations are considered by the Research Degrees Committee (RDC).

School of Economic, Social and Political Sciences

Students will also be expected to attend appropriate courses or workshops provided for professional development. Arrangements for research training in subsequent years will be agreed with your supervisory team and approved as part of the annual review process.

Objectives of Research Training

The principal aims of research training are to:

  • facilitate the preparation and successful completion of your postgraduate thesis;
  • prepare you for research within the social sciences, so that you become conversant with key research methods in social science;
  • develop your critical awareness of, and your capacity to evaluate, the complexity of theories and explanations in social science;
  • give you knowledge of the basic principles of research strategy and design so that you can formulate researchable issues and construct effective research programmes;
  • help you to identify and develop appropriate methodological skills to enable you to carry out your research;
  • help you develop the wider skills required for your future involvement with research activity and career development;
  • provide you with access to expertise from outside your immediate disciplinary group; and
  • create a forum of peers so that you can discuss issues relating to postgraduate research and provide mutual support.

At the outset of your studies you will discuss your individual training requirements with your supervisor and supervisory team, and together reach an agreement about the training modules which should be followed. Your training programme will depend upon your discipline, the subject and nature of research, and your experience of research methodologies. You will need to take into account which modules are compulsory for students in your discipline area. A typical full-time student will take the majority of their research training modules in year 1, but it is expected that this training will continue into future years, drawing on subject-specific activities as well as those provided by the Researcher Development and Graduate Centre. Part-time students will usually spread their research training over a longer period, depending on their specific needs, prior experience, etc. Please take timetabling constraints into account when planning your pathway through the modules available.

Programme Research Training Schemes within Social Sciences

Each Postgraduate Research Course organises its own training programmes, reflecting the needs and prior experience of the individual students. Your personal training programme will be arranged in the light of this. Details of the specific arrangements made for students in individual programmes can be found here.

A number of programmes run research training modules which, while primarily intended for students on those programmes, may be available to other students on the recommendation of their supervisor and with the agreement of the programme concerned. If you wish to attend one of these modules or any others within the School, Faculty or University, please check with the convenor of the module concerned before registering.

Details may be found in the Student Record System Self Service Programme Catalogue.

These modules are listed below and details are available via the website:


The following modules may be available and of interest to students outside Economics, subject to the required pre-requisites:

  • ECON6001: Preliminary Mathematics and Statistics
  • ECON6003: Quantitative Economics
  • ECON6004: Quantitative Methods
  • ECON6007: Labour Economics
  • ECON6008: Industrial Economics
  • ECON6009: Topics in Economics
  • ECON6015: Finance
  • ECON6016: International Trade
  • ECON6017: Economic Policy in Development
  • ECON6021: Microeconomics
  • ECON6023: Macroeconomics
  • ECON6024: Econometrics I
  • ECON6025: Topics in Economic Theory
  • ECON6032: Topics in Macroeconomics
  • ECON6037: Experimental Economics
  • ECON6039: Empirical Finance

As part of the programme specific Mandatory Training, students entering the PhD Economics programme should take 3 modules from the list of modules offered as part of our MSc programmes in Economics, MSc Finance and Econometrics, or from other rigorous postgraduate programmes of the University. These courses need to be agreed with the supervisory panel. More specific information on the list of modules can be found here

The above courses are typically taken during the first year of candidature. The standard Pass Mark at Masters level is 50%, and PhD students should therefore aim for 60% in each of these modules. Whilst this is not a formal progression requirement that could lead to termination of candidature, students who do not reach 60% and wish to improve their score will have an opportunity to do so.

Students’ learning from these modules will inform the Confirmation of Doctoral Candidature milestone.

Please see the Economics postgraduate study webpage for details. 


The following modules are available to students from outside Gerontology:

  • GERO6017: Research Methods for Ageing Societies 
  • GERO6018: Perspectives in Gerontology
  • GERO6019: Demographic Change, Ageing and Globalisation
  • GERO6020: Ageing, Health and Well-being 

Please see the Ageing/Gerontology postgraduate study webpage for details here.  

Politics and International Relations

The following modules may be available to students from outside Politics:

  • RESM6001: Philosophy of Social Science Research
  • RESM6002: Research Design and Practice
  • PAIR6001: Global Politics and International Relations
  • PAIR6007: Citizenship and Democracy 

Please see the Politics and International Relations postgraduate study webpages for details.

Research Methods

The following research methods modules may be available to students in Social Sciences:

  • RESM6001: Philosophy of Social Science Research
  • RESM6002: Research Design and Practice
  • RESM6003: Qualitative Methods 1
  • RESM6004: Quantitative Methods 1
  • RESM6005: Survey Design
  • RESM6006: Qualitative Methods 2
  • RESM6007: Quantitative Methods 2
  • RESM6305: Mixed Methods

Details may be found here. You are welcome to attend these even if you are not an SCDTP funded student.

Social Statistics and Demography

The following modules are likely to be of interest to students outside social statistics:

DEMO6020: Demographic Methods I 

DEMO6021: Understanding population change 

DEMO6023: Population, poverty and policy 

GLHE6002: Methods and analysis of global health trends and differentials 

STAT6077: Social science data: sources and measurement 

STAT6086: Survey Methods I

STAT6108: Analysis of hierarchical (multilevel & longitudinal) data 

Other modules may be available if students require training in more detailed aspects of statistics or demography. Please see the Social Statistics and Demography webpages for details.


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