As a supervisor you will take part in the recruitment of students, College and departmental open days, other recruitment activities and will assist with advertising and promoting studentships.
You should consult your department to find out what training is provided to support you in this process. General recruitment and selection training is also available through People and Organisational Development.
Interviewing and offers
Precept 1: Interviewing
- All prospective students must be interviewed
- The selection panel must comprise at least two members of staff and will normally include the Director of Postgraduate Studies or nominee
- All staff should seek training and should be up-to-date with current legistlation and College policies before interviewing
The College provides prospective research applicants with advice on what sorts of topics to discuss at interview. You are advised to familiarise yourself with the document when preparing to interview prospective students. Guidance for Postgraduate Research Applicants.
Be ready to talk about how you manage your group and/or lab, colleagues involved with your research, how often students can expect to see you and opportunities for professional development and teaching. If possible, arrange for the student to visit your lab so that they can develop a better understanding of how it works on a day-to-day basis. This will help to set expectations from the start. It is also good practice to allow them to talk to current students and staff on an informal basis.
Precept 2: Offers/Admission
- Only appropriately qualified and prepared applicants should be accepted
- Offers should only be made when a student will be provided with the supportive environment they need i.e. appointing supervisors who have time to be their supervisor and there will be access to facilities and equipment needed.
A decision to admit a student to a research programme should not be made unless:
- the student is motivated
- the student is appropriately qualified
- a research topic suitable for that student’s abilities and background is available
- the necessary facilities and resources can be provided
- proper supervision can be given throughout the duration of the programme.
Welcoming new students
In some cases, you may wish to make contact with your new student prior to enrolment to provide advice on general background reading and to encourage an initial literature survey on the research topic.
You should also highlight:
- The College’s Success Guide for postgraduate research students
- Imperial Student Support Zone also offers advice on social, wellbeing and practical issues which can impact on the student experience
- Ways in which students can get the most out of their time at the College
When your new student arrives, it is important that they understand what facilities are available to them both within the department, and more widely across the College:
- A health and safety induction must form part of this introduction
- You should also encourage your student(s) to attend the College’s and departmental welcome events
- If your student starts outside the normal study period, please ensure they receive a full induction to your group and the department.
Dr Timothy Constandinou on effective recruitment of students
Dr Constandinou shares his tips for effective recruitment of students.
Dr Timothy Constandinou, Reader in Neural Microsystems at Imperial College London, shares his tips for effective recruitment of students.
What students most value in supervisors
Also think about how students view you - PhD students share what they most value in supervisors
Ahmed Shamso, Zaynab Jawad, and Yu Xia, PhD Candidates at Imperial College, explain what characteristics they most value in supervisors.