WRDTP Student FAQs

Prepared for you by our current Student Representatives

What is the White Rose DTP?

The White Rose Social Sciences Doctoral Training Partnership, is a collaboration across the social sciences at the Universities of Leeds, Sheffield, York, Bradford, Sheffield Hallam, Hull, and Manchester Metropolitan. It was established in January 2016 with an investment from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) to provide a national training centre for postgraduate researchers in the social sciences, including the award of a minimum of 48 full scholarships per year.

What is the aim of the White Rose DTP?

The aim of the DTP is:

  • To involve postgraduate researchers, as well as early career researchers and academics, in a vibrant and growing community of social science researchers
  • to facilitate links and networks between academics, early career and postgraduate researchers both within single disciplines and beyond
  • to offer a range of broad based training opportunities
  • to increase access to training courses throughout the UK.

Who is member of the White Rose DTP?

All social sciences PhD students from each of the three participating universities (University of Leeds, Sheffield and York) are a member of the White Rose DTC. This includes both students funded by the ESRC and all other students within the social science disciplines (no matter how they are funded).


What is a Training Pathway?

The term ‘Pathway’ refers to the programme of doctoral training you will be offered. Within the DTC there are approximately 21 Pathways that map onto subject disciplines, e.g. Psychology, Economics, Politics etc. A Pathway offers you the opportunity to stay connected with other researchers in your own and related fields and to be kept informed about training and events which are specific to your research area. Pathway specific activities take place throughout the year, including student led conferences, poster conferences, invited guest seminar series as well as the annual research activities taking place in the students’ home departments.

For more information please see: http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/pathways/ and have a look on what is on offer in your pathway.

You will be introduced to other students on your pathway from each of the White Rose Universities at the WRDTP Induction Event.

What if my area of research covers more than one Pathway?

Many research areas will naturally cover more than one academic discipline, e.g. ethnographic studies can be classified as economic, psychological, sociological or geographic research. If your research interests are likely to cover more than one discipline, or pathway, then you should explore the possibilities of approaching students/staff in other pathways (keep an eye on the relevant pathway pages on the web) to see what is on offer that may be of interest.

How to apply?

It is likely that an area of research could be supervised by a number of academic staff across the DTP. A good starting point is to for you to research the university departmental web pages and identify which supervisors have expressed similar research interests to your self. You should communicate directly with the relevant academic staff to establish and formulate your research plan. You do not apply directly to the DTP. All applications must be made via the department where you wish to study. Your supervisor/s will know which Pathway your research will link to.

What if I am applying to do research within a project that is being advertised by the university or DTP?

Specific PhD research projects may also be advertised by departments. You will develop your application and proposal with the help of the lead supervisor for these projects.  Contact the department in the first instance.


The doctoral training offered by the Pathways in the DTP are a combination of core research methods, subject specific training and professional skills courses. In many cases training will be interdisciplinary and therefore cross-pathway, i.e. it will bridge two or more academic disciplines. Students are invited to undertake a broad range of training to support their future careers.

Where can I get more information on news and ongoing activities?

The first place to look is the White Rose DTP web site – www.wrdtp.ac.uk

As a social sciences PhD student you are automatically a member of the White Rose DTP, as such you will also receive information about activities via the Postgraduate Administrator in the department where you are registered to study.

If you want to know more about the White Rose DTP, activities, events, trainings and news please check our website regularly, especially the sections about news, events and training:

General information: http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/
News: http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/news/
Events: http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/wr-events/
Training: http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/training/

Also, why not follow us on Twitter – @wrssdtc and use hashtag #wrssdtc – we may need to advertise new training opportunities quickly and this is where you’ll find it.

Can I participate in training and other events offered by other universities?

Yes, you can participate in any of the events announced on the White Rose DTP website. White Rose DTP-sponsored events are free to social sciences PhD students from York, Leeds and Sheffield. Your Pathway may also be organizing events/training that will be offered across the three universities – keep track by logging onto your Training Pathway pages on the wrdtc.ac.uk web site.

Where can I find out more about training events at other universities?

For more information on national Advanced Training opportunities please see the National Centre for Research Method: http://www.ncrm.ac.uk/ or search the full database at http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/training/

How can I share information?

If you would like to submit an article for the quarterly WRDTP newsletter DTC Matters or provide feedback on any of the featured articles, go to ‘News’ and click on ‘New Article +’ button or use the following link: http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/news/add-article/

You can also share information by contacting your Pathway contact and asking them to post news on your Pathway page. You will find your specific Pathway and Pathway contact via the following link: http://wrdtc.humanstudio.com/pathways/.

**Acknowledgements: thanks to Simone Croft (University of Sheffield) and Vera Riffler (University of York) – student representatives of the Academic Quality Committee

Updated August 2017