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School of Social and Political Science: Graduate school


Student-Led Placements

Students may choose to organise their own placement using their existing contacts, or by going through Programme Directors or the Student Development Office.

** Two funding application rounds will be run for student-led placement based dissertations: one deadline will be on 23 January 2019 (12PM) and the other will be on Tuesday 2 April 2019 (12 PM). All funding opportunities will be clearly signposted by email**

How are the student-led placements different?

  • The projects are originally conceived of by the student in liaison with the host organisation. In most cases the student will approach organisations in the first instance if there are no existing School links with the organisations, but the Student Development Team can provide institutional support. Input from Programme Directors will be necessary to confirm that the scope of proposed reserach is suitable for a placement-based dissertation.
  • Students will be responsible for negotiating their responsibilities within the organisation, and ensuring that they are able to meet requirements of both the organisation and the University.
  • The student-led host organisation pack & form must be completed and retured to the Student Development Office.
  • Placements must be located in areas that the FCO do not advise against travelling to. Students are responsible for checking that their travel plans meet the requirements of their funders/sponsors, e.g. those funded by US student loans are not usually allowed to undertake a placement in the US.

 In all other regards the student-led placements are the same as the School-provided projects. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Projects must be formally approved by both the Student Development Office and your Programme Director.
  • Students must meet the academic eligibility criteria; at least an average of 60% in first semester courses
  • Students will be on placement during the usual time (around May-June) and will then write up for the dissertation deadline confirmed by College.
  • The dissertation will comprise the same elements as the School projects; a research paper of 12,000 words, and a diary of 3,000 words (with fortnightly draft submissions of the latter). Students are also expected to produce a 2 page executive summary of their findings, and create a research poster for the end-of-year Showcase.
  • Projects will require the same paperwork to be completed once confirmed. This includes the Memorandum of Agreement (signed by the student, University, and host organisation), risk assessments, ethics form, etc.
  • The University will provide academic supervision throughout the placement
  • The Host organisation will be asked to provide a named contact with whom the University can liaise on all placement matters
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