Academic Toolkit - ACT!

Fellowship Start Date
S0 S+12
Funded period

First year PhD

Start fellowship start date and complete by 1 year after fellowship start date

Getting started


1. Ensure you are registered for your PhD and have received any relevant contracts. Prior to signing your contract(s), run them past the BMA Contract Checking Service. Check you have been sent all of the logins you need - this may require mandatory training!

2. Be organised - time management is a priority. If you have not done so already start a daily work diary. Take advice if you find this difficult. Say 'no' to requests that clearly conflict with your planned work shedule. Offer to give short presentations of your project to members of the department who will contribute to development by questioning various aspects.

3. It is essential that from the outset you understand how much funding is available and what this can be spent on (salary, consumables, travel, etc). Your departmental finance officer is reponsible for managing the funds but you must check the details carefully at least once per month. 

4. Keep clear records of your research (e.g. in a lab book). This should be signed and dated by your supervisor on a regular basis. Ensure all data are kept securely (e.g. encrypted USB memory stick, paper files in secure units). Back up your files regularly - most Universities now provide a secure online storage method e.g. Google Drive; get IT advice on how to ensure that all your data is backed-up and previous versions are accessible in case there is a system failure.

5. Ensure you maintain a healthy work life balance. Not all research endeavours will be successful on your first attempt. Try not to be disheartened, but instead discuss with your peers, mentors and supervisors. 

Second year PhD
S0 S+12

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