Allocation of Desk Space Allocation of Desk Space

Background

The School of Environmental Sciences maintains just over 150 desks for PGRs, spread over whole schools from the dark dungeons of floor 02 to the Penthouses on floor 3 and modern offices in ZICER.

At certain times of the year, particularly around October 1st when many PGRs are finishing off their PhDs and a large new cohort of PGRs arrives to start their studies, there may be pressure on desk space. Accordingly, the School has procedures for rationing desks. 

The desk allocation policy differentiates between those in their Period of Study (in most cases that is their first 3 years of study) and those that have gone beyond their Period of Study and into their Registration Only Period (in most cases that is 4th year of study and beyond). 


1. Dedicated Desks for those in their Period of Study

The School has formally committed to ensuring that all PGRs are guaranteed a dedicated desk for the duration of their Period of Study. 

For the vast majority of our PGRs that Period of Study is 3 years. Some PGRs may have funding for a longer Period of Study (for example, NERC-funded students may receive a 6 month extension to their Period of Study). Similarly, for various reasons, some PGRs may need to intercalate or head off on maternity/paternity leave. Again their Period of Study, and hence their right to a desk, would be extended accordingly.

2. Hot Desks for those in their Period of Study

We are aware that some students in their Period of Study do not have need for a dedicated desk. For example, they may be away in the field, working at a partner institution or may simply have a preference for working in a different location. 

To ensure an efficient use of desks, the School offers those students the opportunity to give up their dedicated desk for a year. In return the School will significantly reduce their top-slice for that year, refunding £250 into their RTSG account. 

Also, the School will provide a number of hot desks; locations that PGRs that have given up their desks can use as a base when they need to come into the School (perhaps for meetings with supervisors). 

For planning purposes, desks may only be given up for a whole year and that year must run from October 1st to September 30th.

Actions: All those that will be in their Period of Study as of October 1st of a particular year will be sent an email in May of that year asking them to consider whether they would like to give up their dedicated desk from October 1st to September 30th of the following year. PGRs receiving this email should discuss this option with their supervisors. In order to qualify for the hot desk scheme and associated top-slice refund, applications for the scheme will need to be made by the end of July of that year. 

3. Desks for those in their Registration Only Period

With luck the hot desk scheme will free up enough desks to accommodate all those who have gone beyond their Period of Study and into their Registration Only Period (for most PGRs that means their 4th and subsequent years of study). Given the space restrictions, however, that may not be possible. Accordingly, the School requires that all those in their Registration Only Period apply for a desk extension. 

Extension requests will be considered by the PGR committee. Each request will be judged on its merits but the following general rules have been agreed with PGR representatives on the GAC; (a) lowest priority will be given to those that have already submitted their theses for examination; (b) higher priority will be given to those just entering their Registration Only Period over those that have been writing-up for a long time. 

Actions: All those that will be in their Registration Only Period as of October 1st of a particular year will be sent an email asking them to consider whether they will require a desk extension into the following academic year. Those wishing to apply for a desk extension will be required to complete and return a desk extension form that will be forwarded to you 

Please note, that if you do not return a desk extension request by the end of July, then it will be assumed that you will NOT require a desk from October 1st of that year.