Skip to main content
DMU Home DMU Home LLS Home
LLS logo

Centre for Learning and Study Support (CLaSS): Research Students

How CLaSS works with research students

CLaSS offers support for students conducting independent research in a variety of ways:

  • Writing Group for Research Students (details below)
  • DMU Writing Circle (details below)
  • "Thesis Boot Camp" weekend writing retreat (next occurence Summer 2020)
  • One-to-One tutorials
  • E-tutorials - When booking an e-tutorial with CLaSS, research students may be offered an extended (50-minute) slot, upon request.
  • Workshops

CLaSS lecturers also deliver a range of modules within the Doctoral College's programme of  training for researchers. To sign up for one of these, please check the Researcher Development Programme page.

Writing Group for Research Students

The Writing Group for Research Students is a small, informal group that meets in the Kimberlin Library on a monthly basis to discuss topics related to writing at doctoral level. We're always looking for new members, so please do come along to find out what we do. Whether you've only just started your research or are in the writing up stages, all research students are welcome.

Each session starts with a short workshop (1hr) followed by an hour of peer-to-peer writing feedback. Students can also attend as an interactive webinar - contact us for details of how to do so.

2019/20 Dates

Meetings  are held monthly from 10am to 12pm on Thursdays in KL 0.07b, Ground Floor, Kimberlin Library. 

  • 3 October 2019, 10-12, KL 0.07b Planning your writing for the year ahead

In the first meeting of the year, we thought about strategies to plan ahead and manage a high volume of writing while meeting other goals. We also invited participants to help us shape the focus of future meetings. 

  • 7 November 2019, 10-12, KL 0.07b Literature reviews

Set at the beginning of November, which is 'Academic Writing Month', this session focused on strategies to plan, write and revise a literature review.

  • 5 December 2019, 10-12, KL 0.07b, Resources for thesis writing

The last session of 2019 discussed a range of books and online resources that can support doctoral writing, including Helen Sword's The Writer's Diet, Adrian Walbank's Academic Writing and Dyslexia and Rowena Murray's How to write a thesis. These and other relevant resources can be accessed online or borrowed (please check the Library Catalogue) or consulted in the CLaSS Reference collection (Kimberlin Library, ground floor, KL 0.07/Learning Development Zone).  

  • 16 January 2020, 10-12, KL 0.07b, Building an argument in your review of literature

This session discussed a model of argument structure and examined different argument patterns in the work of others. Participants also had the opportunity to reflect how this model of argument can be applied to their own review of literature.

  • 20 February 2020, 10-12, KL 0.07b, Writing and emotion

In this session we will look at the role emotion plays in academic writing and how this can be both a positive and a negative thing. We will discuss strategies to help you write when you don’t want to write.

As usual, this will be followed by 1 hour of peer-review activity. Please bring a sample of your writing (no more than 2 sides of A4) if you'd like to receive feedback.


All research students welcome.

  • For any enquiries, or to register to attend, please contact Neil Skinner -

Doctoral Writing Resources

There are a wealth of excellent online resources, books and blogs on academic writing, geared towards doctoral students. Some good examples include:

  • The Thesis Whisperer. A website with a wide range of contributors, edited by Dr Inger Mewburn
  • The Writer's Diet: Helen Sword's website on stylish and productive academic writing
  • Patter: Pat Thomson's blog on academic writing

Past events

Please follow the links to access resources from Academic Writing Day: Develop your confidence as a writer and Academic Writing Day 2: Strategies to develop your manuscript for journal publication.

DMU Writing Circle


Introducing the DMU Writing Circle


3-5pm every Wednesday during Term Time

Eric Wood Building EW2.03


The DMU Writing Circle is a community of DMU staff and research students interested in getting writing done and developing their capabilities as writers through participation in a regular social writing community. 

The DMU Writing Circle provides a collegial environment which meets weekly. There is no need to formally join the Circle or book a place - just come along when you want to get some writing done with others. Tea and Coffee will be provided.

The primary focus is on actually writing, with the opportunity to discuss and share effective writing practices and approaches as well. In addition, on some weeks there will be seminars and events on various aspects of writing.

The DMU Writing Circle is open to DMU staff and Research Students. Any kind of writing is welcome (including creative writing, if you wish). 

For more information contact Jason Eyre (, Centre for Learning and Study Support.






Proofreading for Research Students

Research Students often enquire about proofreading support.

The research degree regulations at DMU (section 14.3) allow for "limited assistance with proof reading... with the prior approval of the supervisor". The role of a professional proofreader is limited to correcting "spelling, grammar and punctuation accuracy", but otherwise it is vital that the document is the student's own work.

The CLaSS Proofreading for Grammar Toolkit offers useful advice on developing your own proofreading strategies.

English Support for Research Students

DMU's Centre for English Language Learning (CELL) offer weekly English sessions for doctoral students.  Please contact CELL for more details.