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The Community Research for Students (CRIS) initiative is new to UCL and is designed to offer an exciting new way to do postgraduate dissertations. CRIS connects not-for-profit organisations that work with the Union’s Volunteering Service with academic staff and Masters students who are keen to research a community need in the capital.

What can I gain out of this? 

It’s a win-win situation for all with each project being tailor made to suit the requirements of the student, the supervisor and the community organisation. 

As a student doing a dissertation in this way will make you stand out from the crowd at the end of the year and help you in your future plans, whether they are continuing in academia or working in another sector. Unless your specific postgraduate programme offers this as part of the dissertation experience, this is the only way at UCL to work with different partners on your research dissertation.

How does it work? 

We’ll be here, every step of the way. It all starts with understanding your training needs and offering you a unique, bespoke training, rather like doctoral students are offered e.g. public engagement skills or strategies for managing collaborative work. We’ll work with you to help identify a community partner, initiative the first meeting and chair a getting-to-know-you introductory meeting between you, your supervisor, and the community partner. We’ll be working with you throughout your dissertation to monitor progress and ensure your research is kept right at the very centre of things.


If you’d like to be a part of CRIS, please email Anne Laybourne.