Research Degrees in


in the Faculty of Education

Opportunities are available to study for the research degrees of MPhil and PhD, either full-time or part-time. Research is focused on a number of different Research Institutes across the University.

The Educational and Social Research Institute is an internationally recognised centre of excellence for applied educational research and evaluation and is a thriving research community. It supports research students in a wide variety of areas, including: difference and diversity in urban education; youth and community; learning technology; children and childhood; language and literacy; mathematics and science education; teacher education; informal learning; higher education pedagogy, policy and practice; games, play and learning; teacher education; and professional issues in education.

Potential applicants are expected to have a good first degree (2:1 or above) or equivalent experience and hold a Master's degree in a relevant area. In addition we expect students for whom English is not their first language to demonstrate a IELTS score of 7.0 or equivalent. In exceptional cases we may consider applications from candidates with lower scores who, if accepted, would be expected to undertake further English language study before commencement.

Places on our PhD programme will be awarded based on the quality of the application, availability of an appropriate supervisory team, and successful interview. In developing the proposal, applicants are strongly advised to read about the research interests of staff and the research groups in the Faculty of Education. We will not be able to find a supervisory team for a proposal that does not fit with these interests.

With your application, please include a proposal of approximately 1000 words that describes the focus, rationale, and aims of your planned study, with an overview of indicative background literature, research questions, methodology, and methods. We do not necessarily expect this proposal to be fully-formed at this stage but we require it to form the basis of a potentially credible study, showing excellent ideas, and a clear engagement with literature and theory.

We are currently recruiting for September 2018 and the final deadline for application is 1 July 2018.


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

How to Apply

The quickest and most efficient way to apply for this course is to apply online. This way, you can also track your application at each stage of the process.

Apply online

Please complete the additional Postgraduate Research Degree Supplementary Information document and upload it to the Student documents section of your online application. This collects important information about your research application and there may be delays if you do not submit this document.

Before you apply, we recommend that you:

  • Contact the relevant Research Degrees Co-ordinator within your chosen area of interest to discuss the project or your ideas.
  • Ensure that you have gathered the necessary supporting documents required and submit them along with your application where possible: references, passport copy, qualification transcripts and certificates, English language proficiency evidence where relevant.
Next Stages of Your Application

We will contact you to let you know the initial outcome of your application, and invite you to attend an interview where appropriate.

Once the university is satisfied with the following, we will send you an offer letter informing you that you have been offered a place of study:

  • Your research proposal
  • The entry requirements have been met
  • You have satisfactory references
  • We have the expertise and resources to be able to supervise you
  • And you have had a successful interview

Some offers may be conditional upon achieving certain grades in your examinations, or successfully completing a particular programme. You must satisfy these conditions before we can confirm your unconditional place.

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Postgraduate Study