This section provides information and guidance which supported the development and administration of our Doctoral Training Centres (DTCs).

Development of the DTC network

In 2009, after a year of review and consultation, we decided to introduce a new Postgraduate Training Framework. This significantly changed the way we delivered our support for postgraduate training by developing a national network of 21 institutional or consortia level Doctoral Training Centres (DTCs). This was a move away from the previous system of accrediting individual training courses and outlets.

The main objective of the framework was to raise the standards of postgraduate training across the social science base.

Annual reports

Each DTC must submit an annual report every September. This report provides easily comparable data against which the DTC can be measured and benchmarked against other DTCs. It also provides DTCs with the opportunity to comment on any challenges and successes. Although the DTCs are no longer receiving studentship funding, annual reports are still submitted, reporting on activities undertaken by the existing students.

Network evaluation

In 2014 we commissioned an independent evaluation of our Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) network to assess the extent to which it was meeting its core objectives. The evaluation was undertaken by a panel chaired by Richard Bartholomew.

The evaluation of the DTC network was one of the core evidence strands which informed the development of our postgraduate training strategy 2017-2023.

In addition to evaluating the network as a whole, we also regularly monitor and evaluate the progress of individual DTCs in a number of ways.