Year 1

Welcome week

During this period, you will have a chance to attend to practicalities (e.g. faculty registration, chemistry skills assessment) but also to meet staff and students through a series of social events designed to help you settle into your new environment.

Training programme

You will start with an eight-month training period known as Technology & Automation Training Experience (TATE), which will strengthen your research techniques and introduce new technologies for chemical synthesis.

We will provide training on automated synthesis, computational methods for synthesis design and new reactor technologies, alongside research lectures by world-renowned academics, who are leaders in their fields.

You will also benefit from developing a range of transferable skills (including presentation skills, teamwork skills and problem-solving skills) through a series of workshops, virtual lab experiments and a journal club.

The main goal of TATE is to enable you to make an informed PhD choice. You will develop research proposals in brainstorming sessions and undertake short rotations in research groups before selecting your PhD project.

One of the first activities that will take place is an assessment of your training needs in both chemistry and transferable skills. This will help us to tailor the training period to suit your needs. We will use the outcome of these sessions to shape activities so you can all get as much out of TATE as possible.

TATE activities

  • Lectures & workshops
  • PhD project brainstorming
  • Virtual experiments
  • Problem session
  • Journal club (literature review)
  • Technology & automation equipment training
  • Mini-projects in academic research groups


TATE is formally assessed in a variety of ways, including written reports, problem solving, presentations and an exam.

Following a positive outcome, students will be allocated to their PhD projects and start their research under the supervison of their academic supervisor(s).

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