University Graduate School Webinar

Friday 19 January 2024 (12:00-13:00)

As a postgraduate at the University of Birmingham, you automatically become a member of our University Graduate School which supports Birmingham’s postgraduate researcher (PGR) and postgraduate taught (PGT) community. We foster an interdisciplinary community and act as a gateway to support and advice. We work closely with the other University support services to ensure our postgraduates have access to a high quality postgraduate experience.

As well as the dedicated support provided to postgraduates through the University Graduate School and University support services, the Guild also supports our postgraduates through their dedicated Postgraduate Officer.

The University Graduate School is committed to supporting and creating a vibrant postgraduate community where each postgraduate can access valuable opportunities to develop transferable skills for future careers and gain the most from their time at the University of Birmingham. As part of this commitment, we offer a variety of academic, social and wellbeing activities and encourage our postgraduates to be actively involved in the organisation of these activities.  Some of our regular postgraduate events are:

Shut Up and Work

Our Shut up & Work sessions aim to help you work more productively in a supportive environment. You come along, set your targets for the day and work in a supportive environment until you achieve your targets. Your targets do not only need to focus on writing, but can be any aspect related to your study or research e.g. reading, data analysis, planning, etc.. You can learn more about our Shut up and Work sessions in this blog post.

The Postgraduate Research Festival

The Postgraduate Research Festival is the biggest celebration of postgraduate research at the University of Birmingham, giving postgraduates from different disciplines the opportunity to share their work with the wider University and beyond. The Festival includes a packed programme with most events open to all staff, students, and partners of the University interested in postgraduate research, including a Research Poster Competition, Images of Research exhibition, and high profile keynote speakers. Participating in the Festival enhances your skills in preparing research posters, effective presentation skills, communicating research to a non-specialist audience and networking skills, and attending the Festival gives an insight into research from postgraduate researchers and postgraduate taught students across the institution, and a chance to reflect on your work in new ways.

Three Minute Thesis

Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) is a research communication competition developed by the University of Queensland, in which doctoral researchers have just three minutes to deliver an engaging presentation on their thesis topic, its originality and its significance.

In the UK, the 3MT national competition final is hosted by Vitae. Individual UK universities run their own competitions, to put forward one winner per participating Institution. The University of Birmingham is one of the Institutions participating in the 3MT competition. Participating in the Three Minute Thesis competition enhances the following skills: effective presentation skills and communicating research to a non-specialist audience.

Read more about Birmingham's Three Minute Thesis competition.

Social and Wellbeing Events

We organise regular academic, social and networking events such as celebratory events, yoga and mindfulness. These activities give our postgraduates the opportunity to meet fellow postgraduates and members of staff from across different disciplines, develop and practise skills for personal effectiveness (e.g. self-management, professional and career development and personal qualities) and engagement, influence and impact (e.g. communication and working with others).

Postgraduate Researcher Awards

At the University of Birmingham we recognise the great contribution our postgraduate researchers and their supervisors make to the academic life at the University. Every year we recognise this contribution and present awards in a number of categories, including the prestigious Michael K. O'Rourke prize for best PhD publication, which recognises outstanding publications by University of Birmingham PhD researchers.

The Awards for Excellence in Doctoral Research Supervision recognise the important role that supervisors have in helping a PhD researcher to completion. More details can be found at the above link on how to nominate your supervisor for this award.

For more information about the events and support available for postgraduate researchers at the University Graduate School (UGS), please see the UGS intranet or contact us at