Postgraduate students' training needs vary enormously. We aim to make as many opportunities as possible available to you. If you can't immediately see opportunities for training in a particular field, we can usually sort something out: please contact the Director of Postgraduate Training.
Research students are invited to participate in postgraduate modules taught in the Department, either by auditing them or by formally registering. In particular, students who have not undertaken any formal research training are encouraged to take the Resources, Methods and Interpretation module. Participation and performance can be recorded in your training transcript. A complete list of these can be found in the Taught MAs Handbook.
A full range of training in software and IT issues is provided for students by Information Technology Services.
Students who need support for language learning have a wide range of options. Greek, Hebrew, Syriac, Aramaic and Middle Egyptian are taught within the Department, and students are welcome to audit these courses. In addition, there are a number of informal reading groups where students and staff meet to enjoy a new text together, and to brush up on grammar and vocabulary.
The Department of Classics and Ancient History runs a popular 'Latin for Research' module, which accommodates beginners. The module runs through all three terms and emphasizes the interpretation of language and texts from the very beginning. The Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies offers an annual Latin Palaeography Summer School, and there is also a Latin Palaeography Reading Group run by postgraduates in Durham's Medieval and Early Modern Student Association. This group meets weekly during term time to transcribe and translate medieval and early modern manuscripts, and though previous knowledge of Latin and/or palaeography is helpful, it is not strictly necessary.
The Centre for Foreign Language Study provides teaching in a extensive range of modern languages. The Languages for All programmes are open to anyone who wishes to learn a language: languages offered include Arabic, French, German, Italian, Mandarin, and Spanish, among others. Alternatively, the Centre runs postgraduate credit-bearing modules in French and German Reading Skills for Research, both for beginners and for more advanced students. The charge for auditing these modules is subsidised by the Department.
Resources outside Durham which some of our students use include the German-language resources of the Goethe Institut; the Greek and Latin summer schools run by the University of Bologna and by King's College, London (the latter sometimes extends to Syriac and Coptic); and the postgraduate progammes in epigraphy run by the British School at Rome.
Students who may need to work on their English will find support from the English Language Centre.