Postgraduate Program and Information

Postgraduate Program

The postgraduate program includes postgraduate presentations of both critical and creative material, craft-focused workshops, a reading and writing group and a writing retreat. It provides opportunities for analysis, discussion and collegiality, information on practical aspects of your research and guidance beyond the scope of your supervisor. We regard the program as an essential part of your candidacy. Most importantly, the meetings will allow you to communicate with other postgraduate students who are in a similar position to yourself. Studying for a postgraduate qualification can be a very isolating experience. Participation in the Writing & Society postgraduate program will not detract from your research activity: on the contrary, it should have the opposite effect, motivating you to continue when your motivation is low, connecting you with other students who can act as a support network, and extending your research interests in unexpected and fruitful ways.

Postgraduate seminar papers

This year the Writing & Society Research Centre will be running four postgraduate research presentation dates when you can present a critical seminar paper or a creative piece of work: Friday 20 April, Friday 22 June, Friday 28 September and Friday 23 November.

For the presentation of a critical piece of work you may present a section of a chapter or a conference paper in preparation for an external conference. The presentation of such work is an excellent way to receive feedback from fellow postgraduate students and academic staff.

For the presentation of a creative piece of work you will be encouraged to present as though the piece is complete (that is, not a work in progress). This will be good preparation for the presentation of creative work at Writers’ Festivals and other literary symposia. You may choose to have feedback or not.

In regards to these seminar slots, this year the Writing & Society Research Centre encourages all students to present a piece of research prior to the completion of your second year. If you have already surpassed the second year and not yet presented please consider doing a seminar paper in 2018. The Centre has made this decision after reviewing the Doctorate Policy which states that, “Candidates will present their work on campus at least once per year, at School or University Institute conferences or colloquia”, and candidates are expected to “contribute to the research culture of their School or Institute through participation in seminars, forums and conferences at the University”.

Please contact Melinda Jewell if you wish to present a paper and indicate which date you choose.

If you elect to present a paper it will be necessary for you to send the title of your paper, a brief abstract and biography to Melinda so she can use this information to advertise the seminar. This will be required approximately three weeks prior to your seminar date.

Craft-focused workshops

This year the Writing & Society Research Centre will be running three postgraduate practical workshop days. Each of these days will consist of two workshops, one in the morning (10:00am till 12noon) and one in the afternoon (1:00pm till 3:00pm).

The workshop titles and dates are listed below:

Friday 23 March

One workshop only, followed by a research seminar in the afternoon.

The Use of Theory in a Doctorate with Prof Anthony Uhlmann, Alison Moore, Abby Lopes and Alex Ling

Friday 25 May

The Elements of Poetry – A Workshop for Poets and Non-Poets with Premier-award-winning poet Peter Boyle

All Things Conferences with Anne Jamison

Friday 26 October

The Inequalities of Academic Publishing with Ben Etherington

How Much is Too Much: A Strategic Guide to Exegetical Writing? with Sara Knox

Like the Postgraduate Research Seminars the Centre strongly recommends you attend these postgraduate workshop days. We understand that some may not be of relevance to your studies, for example the creative writing workshops would not be relevant for theory-based doctorates, so we suggest you attend those relevant to your studies. Although you are most welcome to all.


Friday 24 August

‘Behind the Scenes at the State Library of NSW’

State Library of NSW, Macquarie Street, Sydney

Explore the potential of archives to enrich your research project. Be given an opportunity to examine archival material specific to your individual research project. Facilitated by the Head of Manuscripts, State Library of NSW.

Writing Group

This year the Writing & Society Research Centre is going to continue its reading and writing group. The group will be scheduled on the same dates as the Centre’s Postgraduate and Research Seminars. For the Autumn Semester of this year this is: 9 March, 20 April, 4 May, 1 June and 22 June.

The writing and reading group will consist of either:

1. a Writing group session where the writing of a nominated student will be workshopped. This piece of writing may be critical or creative. This student can either circulate a piece of work prior to the meeting or read out a section of work in the meeting. Students will be asked to pre-schedule a date for their writing to be discussed and a student may have their work discussed more than once per year. On the postgraduate table of events these sessions are titled ‘Writing Group’.

2. OR a Reading group where a piece of literary criticism will be pre-circulated and then discussed. Decisions about these critical pieces and which ones will be chosen will be discussed via email with continuing members of the group prior to the first meeting on 23 March. On the postgraduate table of events these session are titled ‘Reading Group’. NEW MEMBERS WELCOMED!

Writing Retreat

One writing retreat is planned for 2018. This retreat will be held at Varuna – The Writer’s House from 12 – 19 November. The focus of this retreat will be announced later in the year.

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