Monthly supervision

Why do we review your progress?

The University places great importance on helping you to complete your research degree programme within your maximum period of registration. 

The Code of Practice on Supervision and Monitoring Progress of Postgraduate Researchers states:

'It is important that, as part of the educational process, PGRs receive appropriate supervision, that their progress is carefully monitored, and that they receive feedback in good time to enable them to adjust their patterns of work as necessary.'

By monitoring progress throughout your time at the University we are able to identify any areas of difficulty you are having and help support you to overcome these.

How and when?

In addition to the supervision meetings that you have with your supervisor, the University has formal methods of tracking your progress. Please see the Annual Progress Review and Managing your own progress webpages for further details on how your progress is monitored.

A GRS2 form must be completed for every monthly supervision meeting for full-time PGRs (or equivalent for part-time) and a copy deposited with the PGR Office within your School. 

Online GRS2 form

An online version of the monthly supervision record form (GRS2) has been developed and will be compulsory for use from the beginning of the 2018-19 academic year.

From 1 May 2018 a small number of Schools are involved in a pilot launch of the online GRS2 form and you will have received notification if you are part of the pilot launch.  If you are unsure if you are part of the pilot launch, please contact your PGR administrator.

The online GRS2 step-by-step guide (PDF - 1.8MB) explains in detail how to use the online GRS2 form.

The online GRS2 quick guide (PDF - 300KB) provides an at-a-glance overview of the process. 

To supplement the above guides and to provide answers to questions that may arise when using the online GRS2 form, a list of potential questions and answers for postgraduate researchers and supervisors has been drawn up.

The online GRS2 form opens on the first day of the month and closes at the end of the last day of the month.  On the first day of the month PGRs and lead and co-supervisors will receive an e-mail advising that the form is open for completion. The online GRS2 form has been developed to facilitate completion of one GRS2 form each month and the member of the supervisory team who is meeting with the PGR should complete the form. 

The section at the top of the online GRS2 form “There has been no contact” should only be completed if the PGR has not made contact with any members of the supervisor team.

If you have any problems accessing the online GRS2 form, please contact the IT Helpdesk  (0121 414 7171)

BIRMS PGR Management System

The BIRMS PGR Management System has been developed to provide electronic functionality for the management of the paperwork and processes surrounding postgraduate researcher degree registrations. PGRs and supervisors are now able to:

  • upload, email, comment on and approve Development Needs Analysis and the Personal Development Plan
  • upload, email,comment on and approve records of monthly supervision meetings

Access to the BIRMS PGR Management System for PGRs is via the Student Portal.

You are encouraged to speak with your supervisor regarding use of the BIRMS PGR Management System for recording your monthly supervision meetings.