Manchester Metropolitan University

Distance Learning Research Degrees

The distance learning PhD programmes at Manchester Metropolitan University are ideally suited for those who want to develop their professional careers without having to leave employment as well as those who may have personal commitments that preclude traditional on-campus study.

Under the guidance of distinguished academics, doctoral candidates study full- or part-time for a period of three to six years. Flexibly designed, our PhD programmes are tailored to meet individual needs across a wide range of academic subject areas. 

Our distance learning PhD programmes offer great opportunities for world-class professionals who are passionate about their field and are looking to expand their horizons.

Watch our video on Distance learning PhD programmes

Key Features

Below are some of the key features of our distance learning PhD programmes. 

  • The programmes can be studied full time (3 years) or part time (6 years)
  • Meetings with supervisors will take place via Skype (or an equivalent platform) at mutually convenient times
  • Research training will be provided via online platforms, such as webinars
  • Travel to Manchester is necessary only for the final oral defense (the viva voce exam), though students are welcome – and indeed encouraged – to visit during the course of their studies
  • Distance learning PhD students are eligible to apply for university assistance towards conference attendance (whether inside or outside the US)

Distance learning students are connected to Manchester throughout their studies:

  • In addition to scheduled meetings, supervisors and students will be in regular contact
  • We have a thriving community of research students from across the world; they use our online chat forums to exchange ideas, views, experiences, and opinions with other research students across the university
  • Every faculty has an elected student representative who acts as a bridge between learners and the university
  • Every year we run a Postgraduate Research Conference which enables our PhD students to present their research findings; distance learners are encouraged to take part, either in person or via Skype
  • Our annual Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, in which PhD students record a 3-minute video describing their research, is open to all PhD students
  • Distance learning PhD students can also connect to the university, its staff and student community via dedicated Facebook and Twitter accounts

Further information about distance learning PhD programmes

Subject Areas Available

Supervision is available in the following subjects:

For further details, please click on the above links.

For general enquiries about distance learning in the Humanities Faculty, please contact Dr Lloyd Strickland via

Entry Requirements

For distance learning PhD programmes, students should have a good honours degree and ideally have completed a Master’s degree in a relevant subject.

Those students whose first language is not English will require an IELTS score of 6.5 (no component below 6.0) or equivalent English Language qualification.

Before applying for a research degree, applicants should have a preliminary discussion with a member of staff to discuss a proposed research project.

How to Apply

To apply for a distance learning PhD, you must submit two application forms.

  1. Application form to study for a Postgraduate Research Degree
  2. Additional information form for a Distance Learning PhD

The completed application forms should be returned to: Graduate School, Manchester Metropolitan University, Room 202, Ormond Building, All Saints Campus, Oxford Road, Manchester, M15 6BX, UK, or emailed to

Fees, Scholarships and Discounts

For 2017/18, the fees for distance learning PhD programmes are as follows:

  • Home/EU: £4,195 per annum (Full-time study) · £2,098 per annum (Part-time study)
  • International: the fee is determined according to whether the subject area falls under Band 1 or Band 2

Subjects in Band 1

International £13,050 per annum (Full-time study) · £6,525 per annum (Part-time study)

Band 1 applies to all the subjects above except Contemporary Arts, Fashion and Clothing, Hospitality/Events Management, Information Communications, and Tourism Management.

Subjects in Band 2 

  • £14,400 per annum for full-time study
  • £7,200 per annum for part-time study

Band 2 applies to Contemporary Arts, Fashion and Clothing, Hospitality/Events Management, Information Communications, and Tourism Management.

Please note that fees are revised every year.


To assist institutions looking to upskill their staff, those that supply five or more PhD enrolments within a six-month period will be entitled to a discount on the standard fee. This will be 5% for institutions supplying between 5 and 9 students and 10% for those supplying 10 or more students. The discount will apply to each student enrolled and will cover the entire duration of the students’ enrolment.


We are currently offering thirty scholarships for high-quality individual applicants, which will take the form of an annual discount on the standard fee. The scholarship is of the value of £1000 p.a. for full-time students, and £500 p.a. for part-time students, and in each case is payable for the duration of the course. Scholarships are awarded on a competitive basis and cannot be guaranteed.

Applicants wishing to be considered for a scholarship should indicate this on the application form.

Individual applicants may be entitled to assistance under the FAFSA scheme. Further details may be found here.


Shandon L. Guthrie
Las Vegas, USA
PhD Philosophy Graduate, full-time

Shandon Guthrie‘There are few academic experiences in my history that I would say have changed my life for the better, and my PhD programme in philosophy through MMU sits as the highest on this list. From my matriculation to my graduation, MMU exhibited an unparalleled professionalism in guiding me through the various steps of my studies. Their close attention to providing every resource at my disposal along with a genuine concern for how I was being treated by MMU put me at ease. As an international student, it made me feel comfortable knowing that they care greatly for their students in this way.

My supervisor exceeded my expectations in every possible way. From his scholarly guidance to the rigor of his feedback, he drove me to produce no less than high quality work. He was not only an indispensable educational guide, he was a mentor and friend who encouraged me every step of the way.’

Watch our interview with Dr Shandon L. Guthrie 

Sass Brown
New York, USA
PhD Apparel Graduate, part-time

Sass Brown‘I have had the pleasure of starting my PhD remotely. My advisors have been as accessible and responsive as if I were on the campus. Our regular Skype sessions have substituted for in person meetings, and nothing has suffered through that substitution. Their advisement has been just as complete and detailed as if in person. It is quite possible that this process has encouraged my own organization and record keeping. So many of the support materials are also online, including instruction, workshops, and information, that I don’t believe there has been any significant difference in the process or the outcome of my work.’

Willy Legrand
Bonn, Germany
PhD Hospitality Management, part-time

Willy Legrand‘As I embarked on the PhD journey, one of the decisive factors in choosing the right programme was the flexibility it would offer in terms of on-site attendance. Working full-time and having to support a family, it became essential that I could conduct my research at distance while still benefit from active supervision. Manchester Metropolitan’s PhD programme offered this possibility. I received regular and thoughtful feedback from my supervisors over the course of my research. While at distance, the attentive support I received was critical in driving my research to an end. The PhD journey has been instrumental in learning how to conduct quality research and for further career development.’

Postgraduate Study