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It is expected that you should go to your Personal Tutor or main PhD Supervisor for a reference in the first instance. Your Personal Tutor/Supervisor can comment on overall academic performance across all modules taken and provide general information. For UG and PGT students, for more subject-specific applications, you may additionally request that a particular lecturer provides academic member of staff provides you with a reference, but should note that staff are not obliged to provide a reference for students who are not one of their Tutees and/PhD students and, at very busy times of year, it may not be possible for them to do so.

If you plan to make a number of applications, you MUST gain permission to name a particular member of staff for each one: you should detail each opportunity that you are applying for (though you may request a reference for more than one opportunity at a time), and should not assume consent in the future because it has been granted at some point in the past. It is suggested that you offer some explanation of why you are making the application that you are, mentioning aspects of your experience at University that it might be relevant for your referee to highlight in their reference. You should also let your referee have an up-to-date copy of your CV for use when writing their reference for you.

If you intend you are a UG or PGT student and intend to apply for a postgraduate programme of study, please be advised that it is far better to submit one well-written application, tailored to the institution that is the best fit for your interests, than to apply for several diverse programmes at once. If you do plan to make a number of applications, please also be advised that it is unlikely staff will be able to write multiple individual references, each of which is tailored to a specific programme.