Blog Archives

Times Higher Education article on doctoral theses

Almost half of doctoral candidates fail to claim that their theses have contributed to knowledge despite this being the main criterion on which they are assessed, a study has found.

Postgraduate Perspective Newsletter: February 2013

The February 2013 issue of the Postgraduate Perspective newsletter is now available.  Featuring the theme of ‘sustainability’, articles include:

  • The virtue of Sustinere is its sustainability
  • Helsinki prize winner Aylwyn Walsh
  • Social network phenomena
  • Multiculturalism and sustainability
  • The Research Support Hub
  • Sustainable educational development
  • The student experience
  • Student finance and sustainability
  • Book review corner
  • New students and completions
  • Postgraduate Annual Conference
  • Graduate School training programmes

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NELSON upgrade Sunday 24th February

The software behind the Library’s resource discovery system, NELSON, is being upgraded this weekend.

During the upgrade you will only be able to access NELSON in ‘search’ mode, you will not be able to save items to your eShelf.  Additionally, links between NELSON and the library catalogue may be temporarily unavailable.
A message displaying this information has been posted on the NELSON home page.

Following the upgrade you will have further options to personalise your search results by discipline and the ability to refine a search by including and excluding multiple topic areas.

Image credit: Compass by Roland Urbanek

Must all postgrad research have ‘impact’?

Interesting piece in The Guardian last week –

Mission groups: are they worth the cost?

Is membership of a mission group such as the Russell Group, 1994 group, Million+ or University Alliance worth the financial cost?  The last year has seen a number of UK universities either switch from one mission group to another or withdraw altogether.

The University of Northampton has recently left the ‘Million+’ group of modern universities, with Vice Chancellor Professor Nick Petford stating:

“We can’t really see what value a mission group offers us anymore”.  “We’d rather be independent and pick and choose the universities we want to work with”.  “Million+, as a think tank, has a useful role to play. But it has almost become a millstone around our neck.”

Read more of this lead article in today’s Research Fortnight.

Blogging – or the power of we, not me

Now I’m blogging about blogging…. I don’t recognise myself anymore.
“Too often dismissed as narcissistic echo-chambers, blogs are the ultimate form of collegiality”, suggests Ernesto Priego in

RCUK launches research career case studies to inspire young people

Research Councils UK (RCUK) has today (8 October 2012) published an online suite of case studies designed to inspire the next generation to think about pursuing a career in research.

Find out more at:

Careers Fair – 25 October 2012 – Sunley Conference Centre

On Thursday 25 October, the University is hosting a major Careers Fair between 1100-1500 in the Sunley Conference Centre.  There are a number of high profile employers attending this event who will be keen to meet our students – including postgraduate researchers.  The event provides an ideal opportunity to talk with local and national employers about existing and possible future employment vacancies.  

Further details regarding the event can be obtained from the Careers and Employability Service on x2727 or at

East Midlands Research Support Group

Nick and I spent yesterday afternoon at the University of Nottingham, attending a meeting of the East Midlands Research Support Group (EMRSG).  This group, which comprises library staff from – you’ve guessed it – East Midlands universities, is a community of practice dedicated to sharing good practice in supporting researchers.

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Postgraduate Perspective Newsletter

The past three issues of the Postgraduate Perspective Newsletter,
the newsletter for research students at The University of Northampton, have now been uploaded onto the University Website. Take a look at what your colleagues are up to!