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There are plenty of ways for you to meet other doctoral students across the University. Whether you want to network, get support or socialise, we encourage you to get involved.

Connecting with others

To help you to become part of a broader research environment and to gain an insight into a wide range of research areas, methodologies and practices, we run a variety of training and networking events throughout the year.

Training and development forms a key part of your doctoral research journey. The various training sessions on offer give you an opportunity to meet other researchers from different Schools and Departments.

Find out about training and development for PhD students

The Doctoral and Researcher College hosts a variety of events, giving you the chance to step away from your research, connect with others, relax and be inspired. We also provide support for you to arrange your own academic, networking and social events.

From breakfast clubs, parties and quizzes to our annual conference and Fairbrother Lecture, showcasing the work of current postgraduate researchers, there are plenty of ways to build your network, exchange ideas and make new friends.

“Since beginning my studies as a PhD student in the Department of Geography and Environmental Science, there has always been a strong sense of community. Fortnightly discussion groups are organised with topics covering the various PhD life hacks that we all encounter. Some of these sessions are run by fellow PhD students but some have also been taken by staff who are able to offer invaluable advice.”

Ben Jones

PhD in Environmental Science


Our doctoral students

We've put together some profiles of our current and recent doctoral students. Find out what research they are undertaking, why they chose Reading and what advice they'd give to new students.

“I am grateful to have the opportunity to interact with researchers from a wide variety of departments in the Graduate School. The support and encouragement offered by peers (both medievalist and non-medievalists alike) is something I value highly and has greatly impacted on the level of enjoyment I have in undertaking this degree.”

Ruth Salter

The Graduate Centre for Medieval Studies


Reading Students' Union

The main purpose of Reading Students' Union is to represent students during their university experience. For doctoral students, representation is through the part-time postgraduate research students' officer, who sits on the University's Committee on Postgraduate Research Studies together with the vice-president (academic affairs) of Reading Students' Union.

Student academic representatives

Representation at the School and Department level is through postgraduate researcher (PGR) student representatives, who:

  • attend School and Department PGR committee meetings
  • attend the Postgraduate Student Representatives' Forum, which is held twice a year.

Information on the roles and responsibilities of student representatives can be found in our guidelines for PGR student representatives and notes of guidance for student representatives