How to apply for a research degree

How to apply for a research degree

We have three enrolment points for MPhil and PhD – October, February and May. Other degrees will have different enrolment points - please see the online prospectus for the start date of your course.

If you are applying for an MPhil, please contact the relevant Research Institute. For any other research degree, please follow the process below.

Step 1: Talk to us

We recommend that you contact us early in your decision making process to discuss your research ideas.

You should contact the relevant area you wish to study with directly to see if we can support your research idea.

Step 2: Write a research proposal

Once you have discussed you research idea you should prepare a clear, detailed research proposal. You will need to evidence that you have an aptitude for doctoral level research, and that you can communicate your research ideas clearly and concisely.

Proposals should be up to 1500 words long, and should include

  • an outline of the proposed research and the central questions, problems or hypothesis that you plan to address
  • the current knowledge and context, referencing key background literature
  • proposed methodology or approach, if known
  • the potential significance or impact of the research

Step 3: Apply

To consider your application, we will need

  • a completed application form (for an MPhil, please contact the relevant Research Institute)
  • a research proposal
  • two academic references
  • details of your funding, and copies of financial support letters where relevant
  • copies of qualifications, certificates and/or results transcripts
  • proof of English language ability, where English is not your first language
  • copies of your passport and any relevant visas, for international applicants

The link to the application form and information on entry requirements, English language requirements and fees can be found under the relevant subject information page.

If you are unsure which subject or course you need to apply for, please contact the relevant Research Institute for advice.


What happens next?

Your application will be reviewed by a member of the doctoral admissions team in the relevant area. You will be assessed on the quality and feasibility of your research proposal, the fit with our research areas, and our supervisory capacity and expertise in your area of study.