Structure of Assignment and Thesis Activity

Trainees are engaged in assessed academic activities across the three years of training in parallel to the teaching and placement activities. Whilst the exact timings will differ for each trainee, a typical timetable of this activity during the first 18 months of the programme is detailed in the table below.

Typical timetable of trainee assignment activity and thesis activity over the first 18 months of the programme

Standardised Role Play Simulation
(DACS-SRPS)
Professional Issues Assignments
(PIAs)
Systematic literature review
(SLR)
Service-Related Project
(SRP)
Placement Portfolio
(DACS-PP)
Thesis
YEAR 1
Sep - Oct
Formative roleplay Begin generating topic ideas for SLR Generate ideas for SRP, talk to field supervisors, complete and submit SRP topic form
Nov - Dec PIA1 title submitted and approved Finalise topic area and define SLR question Develop and submit proposal for review by the research team
Jan - Mar PIA1 submitted Submit SLR proposal for approval by exam board Submit feedback form and receive approval of title by exam board, agree supervision contract
Apr - June Write SLR introduction & method, draft read Prepare and submit ethics application AAP1 submitted
Jul - Sep Summative roleplay Write SLR results & discussion, draft read Data collection AAP2 submitted
YEAR 2
Oct - Dec
SLR submitted Data analysis, begin write-up and draft reads CR1 & CRR1 submitted Decide thesis topic.
Decide likely thesis supervisor.
Hand in initial proposal form late Dec
Jan - Mar Finalise write-up
FEB - submit SRP
Present SRP
Finalise choice of thesis supervisor.
Finalise choice of research strategy/method/ measures
See thesis table below
Apr - June PIA2 title submitted and agreed
PIA2 submitted
AAP3 submitted See thesis table below
Jul - Sep AAP4 submitted PPR discussion day 4 - trainees talk about their possible PPR submission in a teaching session
PPR initial report 4 submitted
PPR2 presentation
See thesis table below
YEAR 3
Oct
CR2 & CRR2 submitted See thesis table below

During the second year of training work begins on the thesis project and this usually continues until near the end of the programme. The table below shows a target timetable of the thesis-related activity which tends to take place over years two and three of the programme.

Typical timetable of trainee thesis-related activity over the latter 18 months of the programme

Project Management Research Paper Literature Review Ethics Proposal Critical Appraisal Appendices / Abstract
YEAR 2
Sep - Oct
Decide thesis topic.
Decide likely thesis supervisor.
Hand in initial proposal form in late December
Start collecting references. Keep notes of important research issues.
Start reflective diary.
Jan - Mar Finalise choice of thesis supervisor.
Finalise choice of research strategy/method/measures
Collect key references for ethics proposal and literature review Identify ethics committee(s) to apply to.
Get relevant forms and deadlines for submission.
Note why you chose your strategy/methods/ measures, and not alternatives.
Continue reflective diary
Keep a clean copy of all measures used
Apr - June Agree a research timetable with supervisor. Collect and organise references for literature review. Hand in complete draft ethics proposal by end of May.
Finalise ethics proposal and gain ethical approval.
Keep notes on the process of applying for ethical approval
Reflective diary
Keep a copy of ethics proposal and all related correspondence
Jul - Sep Conduct pilot and amend procedures where necessary. Develop strategy for coding the data. Decide journal for research paper. Decide journal for literature review. Inform ethics committee of any amendments to the study based on the pilot. Keep notes of pilot data collection - when? who? how? refusals? Etc.
Keep notes of what you learned from the pilot - what you changed and why.
Reflective diary
Keep a clean copy of amended measures/ procedures. Keep a copy of correspondence re changes to procedures.
YEAR 3
Oct - Dec
Conduct data collection for main study.
Code data as you go along.
Write draft method section.
Write draft introduction section.
Hand in draft literature review structure by end of October.
Hand in first complete draft of literature review by mid-December.
Keep notes of data collection - when? who? how? refusals? Etc.
Keep notes on data collection and coding process.
Reflective diary.
Jan - Mar Analyse data. Hand in draft introduction and method by end of January.
Write draft abstract, results and discussion sections.
Hand in first complete draft of research paper by end of March
Keep checking for new, relevant references.
Hand in second complete draft literature review by end of February
Organise themes from notes and reflective diary.
Collate notes and diary under these themes.
Reflective diary.
Produce appendices concerning data and all analyses conducted.
Write draft thesis abstract.
Apr - May Complete final version of research paper. Complete final version of literature review. Hand in first complete draft of critical appraisal by end of March.
Complete final version of critical appraisal.
Collate and finalise appendices.
Finalise thesis abstract.
Complete cover sheet etc.
Hand in complete draft thesis to doctoral Programme by end of April.
Soft-bind and HAND IN FINAL THESIS BY DEADLINE DATE