Portrait of Michael schofield

Michael Schofield

Why did you choose to study your PhD at the University of Leeds? 

I completed my MA here in 2014 and began working as a demonstrator for the BA in Film, Photography and Media. In 2015 I was encouraged by staff to draft a PhD proposal based on my practice-led research into time and the changing ontology of photography. The School of Media and Communication is a fantastic place to study and work so I jumped at the chance to continue my research here.

Tell us about the opportunities you took advantage of at Leeds.

During my time as postgraduate researcher I staged two exhibitions of my photography, installed video work for Light Night two years in a row, published my first academic journal articles, presented at two international conferences, had my first experiences of lecturing and got involved in paid photography and videography work at the University, including assisting with externally funded research projects here and at the School of Music.

How has your experience of studying a PhD helped you with your career? 

Studying at the University of Leeds has given me a career. I now work as a Teaching Fellow in the school, using my practice as part of research-led teaching in photography and filmmaking. Before my shift into academia I was working freelance and trying to earn a living from small research grants. Studying and working here has given me both stability and real direction to my work.

What advice would you give to future PhD students? 

Do your preliminary research and learn about the people and work going on here. Pick your potential supervisor carefully. You might be working with this person for four years. Make sure they understand your research interests and you respect each other’s work.