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1. Check our entry requirements

Applicants should normally possess at least a first degree (normally of an upper second-class honours standard or above), or equivalent. Many applicants also have a master’s degree (normally of a good merit standard or above).

We will consider, and the Dean of PGR Studies can approve, the admission of students with non-standard qualifications.

If you are from outside of the UK, you will also need to demonstrate you have a certain level of proficiency with written and spoken English.

For more information on entry requirements, visit the Graduate School website.

2. Select a topic

There are different routes for selecting a PhD research topic:

If you are interested in a broad area of research but don’t have a specific project in mind, please consult the advertised projects on our PhD opportunities page.

If you have a clear idea about a research project that you want to undertake, you should prepare a research proposal (PDF). The project must be feasible within the resources and time frame available to you; it should also address a perceived 'gap' in the literature and, most importantly, be of interest to you.

Read our guidelines on how to prepare an effective research proposal (PDF)

3. Identify a supervisor

Please view our staff pages to learn about our research expertise and interests. This can guide your search for a potential supervisor. It is often helpful to contact a prospective supervisor directly by emailing your research proposal. This way, you can receive feedback on the quality and suitability of your proposal.

4. Make an application

Please apply using the PhD and professional doctorate online application form.

This allows you to complete the necessary information and attach copies of relevant documents, including the details of two appropriate referees. Although you will be working with a specific area of the School or supervisor, all PhD applications have to be made centrally.

Most new students join the PhD programme in October, but it is possible to start your studies at any point during the academic year.