Back to All Events


Purpose: The final presentation day (Tuesday 29 May, 09.00-17.00) aims to give two kinds of feedback on the 8 months of the PhD period: group feedback on a short aural presentation of the thesis, and individual feedback on the written thesis proposal as submitted on 4 May. In order to facilitate the aural presentation we will have a rehearsal workshop on Tuesday 22 May, 09.00-14.00 followed by a session for feedback on the year, 14.00-16.00, to take suggestions for improvements to the programme and updates on the changes being proposed for next year.

Form for final aural presentation, to be workshopped in rehearsal:

The overall frame for the aural presentations given at the end of the year are as given earlier in the term in your notes from Cheryl. Depending on the genre of research in which you work you may wish to adjust the order you used from Cheryl’s list of contents. In one field the description of the research context – in terms of archive material or a landscape situation might – need to preceed presentation of a formalized research question (and in general, research questions often only become clear once the empirical material of a situation is absorbed). A short presentation of any subject is often difficult to do early on in a study; but what should be clear by this time is the outline of the empirical material you are interested in and a set of proposals about how to bound it, and a very vibrant argument as to why it is interesting. 

This list of prompts is a mixture of Cheryl’s guidance and my take on what is worth discussing (with interested critics) about a PhD project at the end of the first year

  • Title of your project (always good to think about) + first image
  • Layperson’s oral description/introduction to your project [2-4 minutes] + images
  • This needs, in some neat way, to lay out an issue that people can understand is an issue.
  • Research in the field and the question of what you might contribute. Who has talked about this? Why do we need to talk about it more? What images go with this?
  • Discussion of the first piece of research production (this can be of field work, article proposal, positioning paper or review essay: the objective is to report on you first trials in approaching and understanding your empirical material). This doesn’t need to report a conclusion, but it should make the audience aware of where you are in the process of actually doing the research – it is much more interesting to hear about something concrete that you have found, or are trying to understand, than long and lofty plans about what you will study “when your research begins”,. RESEARCH ALWAYS ALREADY BEGAN. Convince your audience that there is something in your study that is worth while trying to find out about and show them a means that you are proposing in order to get at that. Interim results are EXTREMELY INTERESTING because you can use them to discuss approach – what perspective you are taking, how this perspective effects what can actually be said about the situation. Image material is EXTREMELY VALUABLE when it opens out what is actually happening in your work process.
  • And, for the audience’s interest and understanding, something about the timetable and total scope of your project -what you hope to, and think it is realistic to, achieve in the 2.5 remaining years; what’s most urgent; where you most need help. Remember, the reason for presenting is not to validate the project but to extract as much input from the panel as possible in terms of furthering it.

Overall length: You have 12 minutes to present (15 minutes including set up).