University Calendar 2011/12
Section XI : Academic Regulations - Faculty of Medicine

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Academic Unit Faculty of Medicine
Final Award Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Science (PhD)
(with intermediate award of MRes)
Programme(s) Integrated PhD in Biomedical Sciences
Last modified July 2010

Reference should be made to the University's General Regulations found in Section IV and Section V (Higher Degree Regulations) of the University Calendar.

Except where an opt-out has been granted by the University (see below) the following academic regulations apply in addition to the General Regulations.

1. Admissions
1.1 All candidates must satisfy the Programme Director that they are competent to pursue the programme.
1.2 Transfer of credits from previously completed academic work in other institutions shall only be considered in exceptional circumstances as the taught modules require group work within each year's student cohort, and the research project modules require supervision by three potential MPhil/PhD supervisors at the University of Southampton.
1.3 Candidates shall not normally be admitted on transfer from another University (with or without their supervisor).
1.4 Candidates satisfying the requirement for candidature may be admitted provided the Faculty of Medicine Board is satisfied that the chosen subject for research fits within the remit of the programme, that there is access to appropriate resources and facilities, and that there are satisfactory supervisory arrangements in place. The right to refuse permission shall be reserved to the Faculty of Medicine.
1.5 Candidates may be required to undergo an Occupational Health check as determined by the needs of the research project.
1.6 Candidates may be required to obtain clearance from the Criminal Records Bureau, as determined by the needs of the research project.
1.7 The University and the Faculty are committed to a comprehensive policy of equal opportunities in which students are recruited on the basis of their relevant merits and abilities and are given equal opportunities within the University. Applications from candidates with disabilities are always considered and assessment of their abilities and needs undertaken sensitively. Decisions are based on whether or not the applicant meets the admission criteria, whether the programme can be delivered to the applicant in a way that meets their requirements, making reasonable adjustments if necessary.

2. Structure of Programme(s)
2.1 The programme to be followed shall be one of supervised study including taught modules at HE7 level, research and generic skills training, and may be undertaken on a full-time basis only.
2.2 Candidates are required to undertake the scheme of study over a period of four years' full-time registration, to pass the required assessments, and to submit a thesis not more than 12 months later than the end of the third year of study. In exceptional circumstances the Faculty may approve a later date for submission.
2.3 The duration of the PhD in Biomedical Science programme is as follows and should be read in conjunction with the regulations for the degrees of Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy.
  • The minimum period of candidature from the date of enrolment shall be:

    MPhil : Not less than 12 months (following completion of the MRes degree)
    PhD : Not less than 24 months (following completion of the MRes degree)

  • This minimum period of candidature must be spent in supervised study. In practice, the period of candidature will usually be longer than the minimum period.
2.4 Candidates may be approved to change to a programme of part-time study during years 2-4, in which case the maximum permitted period of candidature shall be determined by the Faculty Office in accordance with the University regulations for the degrees of Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy.
2.5 In the first year candidates shall be required to follow a prescribed programme of modules and research rotations which shall be taught and supervised in the University. The selection of short research rotations by each candidate shall be subject to the approval of the Programme Director.
2.6 Further information about the programme structure and content can be found in the programme specification.

3. Progression
Year 1
3.1 Candidates who complete the required modules and pass the required assessments at an appropriate standard will normally be recommended for the award of Master of Research at the end of the first year .
3.2 Candidates who fail in any component at the first attempt shall have the right to be reassessed on one further occasion.
3.3 Any further opportunity for re-assessment shall be at the discretion of the relevant Board of Examiners and shall only be granted in very exceptional circumstances.
3.4 Academic staff within the Faculty of Medicine and other staff approved for this purpose will supervise candidates during the first year and every candidate will be allocated a personal tutor. The appointment of tutors and supervisors shall be subject to the approval of the Faculty of Medicine..
3.5 Candidates must attend at least 80% of all taught components and at least 2 out of 3 laboratory rotations in the first year to be eligible for consideration for progression to year 2.
3.6 Progression to year 2 will be dependent on satisfactory progress during year 1 which will be considered independently of module assessments. A review of candidates’ performance will be held at three timepoints during the year at which the Programme Pathway Director and one other member of academic staff will be present. If progress has been unsatisfactory and if, after due warning, there is insufficient improvement, the Faculty may recommend termination of candidature to Senate. The candidate may appeal against the decision by using the procedure set out in General Regulations.
Years 2 - 4
3.7 The second, third and fourth years shall be devoted to a programme of supervised research and preparation of a thesis. The programme shall be pursued in the University except in special cases where the Faculty permits a period to be spent elsewhere. In such cases assurances of provision will be required.
3.8 On successful completion of year 1 and approval to continue with the subsequent years of the programme, a candidate is normally required to register on the MPhil/PhD pathway.
3.9 Students will be allocated a supervisory team of at least two members who will be chosen according to the requirements of the research project.
See University Regulations for the degrees of Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy for further information regarding candidature in years 2-4.

4. Assessment
Year 1
4.1 Assessments of first year modules will include written assignments, oral presentations and group presentations. All modular assignments will be marked by one assessor and a continuity marker who will ensure the overall standard of marking is consistent. All short research project reports will be marked by two assessors including the supervisor.
4.2 Module pass marks and the overall pass mark for the Masters degree in the first year are 50%. Candidates who fail in any first year module at the first attempt will be allowed one attempt to resit each failed module.

5. Award of Qualification(s)
5.1 Candidates who achieve at least 50% in every taught component and research rotation will be awarded the degree of Master in Research Methods.
5.2 Candidates for the degree of MRes will be awarded the qualification with Distinction if they have passed each module at the first attempt and have achieved the following:
  1. at least 70% in every taught module or at least 70% in all taught modules with the exception of one, providing that the average across all the taught modules is still 70% or over;

  2. at least 70% in each of the three short research project reports.
5.3 Requirements for award of the degrees of MPhil or PhD are detailed in the Regulations for the degrees of Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy (see University Calendar Section V).
5.4 The intermediate and final awards are awarded by Senate on the recommendation of the Faculty to candidates who have satisfactorily completed an approved course of study and have satisfied the assessment requirements.

6. Placements/Study Abroad/Exchange/Fieldwork
Not applicable.

7. Other
7.1 These regulations may be revised during the student's period of registration in accordance with the procedures approved by Senate.
7.2 Further information concerning temporary suspension of candidature, nominal registration, extension of candidature, submission of thesis can be found in the Regulations for the degrees of Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy (University Calendar Section V).

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Last reviewed: 05-Aug-2010
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