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Academic support for Part III students is available through events such as preparatory workshops, study groups and the Part III seminar series. It is recommended that students make full use of this support. These activities are run by members of the Faculty and current doctoral students, with the aim of supporting Part III students through their studies, and helping them with the decision of what to do next. The Part III Timeline provides details on what happens when.

Preparatory workshops

These workshops are held at the beginning of Michaelmas term, and are primarily aimed at Part III students who have come to Cambridge from other institutions. They cover the necessary prerequisites in several core areas, including Algebraic Topology, Measure Theory, Statistics, Rings and Modules, General Relativity, Algebraic Geometry, Fluids, Functional Analysis, and Quantum Mechanics. These lectures take place at the beginning of the Michaelmas Term, starting Monday 1st October 2018, and run in the afternoons from 2pm to 4pm and from 4pm to 6pm. The precise subjects and times will be emailed to students before the start of term and are also available here.

Wednesday afternoons

We host several talks and panel discussions throughout the year, usually on Wednesday afternoons. These are designed to support students in their transition from undergraduate student to independent researcher, and include an opportunity to socialise afterwards. Topics covered include:

  • Success Strategies for Part III
  • Introduction to the Careers Service (including PhD applications to the USA)
  • Applying for PhDs (general and Cambridge specific advice)
  • Research in the UK
  • How to give a good talk
  • Planning your essay: reading, understanding, structuring
  • Writing your essay: from outline to final product
  • All about exams
  • Revision strategies

Drop-in sessions

Halfway through and towards the end of Michaelmas and Lent term we arrange for graduate students in each subject area to be available on a drop-in basis. In this informal setting Part III students will have the opportunity to ask questions on both lecture and background material which they may not be comfortable approaching the lecturer with. For students needing more in-depth support, individual supervisions can sometimes be arranged via the student’s college.

Study groups

Students are encouraged to form study groups to review lecture material and work on examples sheets. While many study groups naturally form on their own, we also facilitate their formation via a sign-up sheet early on in the term. Details of the process will be explained to students during the Induction Meeting.

Progress interviews

Every Part III student is allocated a Departmental Contact who will interview you once in Michaelmas and once in Lent to discuss progress.  Attendance at the interviews is obligatory.  A copy of the interview form, which you should complete in advance and have your Departmental Contact sign, will be sent to your College Director of Studies towards the end of each term.  Further information on Progress Interviews is available from the Part III Handbook.

  • Progress Interview Form: Michaelmas Term (pdf)
  • Progress Interview Form: Lent Term (pdf)

Seminar series

Students have the opportunity to give a short mathematical presentation in front of an audience of peers at the end of the Michaelmas and Lent terms. These seminars are grouped by subject and led by a graduate student, who will chair the session and be able to provide guidance during the preparation phase. In Michaelmas, talks usually focus on some aspect of a lecture course, or explore closely related material.  In Lent students often choose to present on their Part III essay topic. More info here.

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