The Role of the director of graduate studies

The below document provides a description of the key responsibilities and tasks of a Director of Graduate Studies. The role of the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) will of course vary from subject to subject, but to provide a comprehensive description, the document is written as if all of the faculty/department’s responsibilities for graduate studies (other than examinations for postgraduate taught courses) have been delegated to a DGS. In practice, where a faculty/department also works via a Graduate Studies Committee, the DGS would of course bring many matters to that committee.

The descriptions are based on the tasks identified as the responsibility of the DGS, Graduate Studies Committee or responsible body in Education Committee’s Policy documents for graduate studies. By setting out the scope of their responsibilities, this document aims to be particularly useful for DGSs who are new in post, and to be a reference document for existing DGSs. 

The guidance is written on the basis that the DGS will have overall responsibility for PGT as well as PGR students in a faculty/department. Adjustments should be made where this is not the case, for example, where a Course Director undertakes these tasks for students on an individual course. This document does not cover responsibilities for PGT examinations, some of which may also be delegated to the DGS. 

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