PhD in Education

Programme structure


There is no minimum duration for any of our research programmes; the maximum durations are given in the diagram below. The darker blue in each case showing the normal (target) duration for each programme, and the lighter blue in each case showing a possible extra year which can be used either partially or in its entirety if needed.

Duration of our research programmes.

*Conversion to ‘Continuation Status’ (also formerly known as ‘writing up’) and the associated reduction in course fees can be applied for at or after the stage indicated by the red bar in the diagram above (where the darker blue section changes to the lighter blue sections) if the student no longer has need of supervision; conversion to ‘continuation status’ is not automatic and full course fees are payable until conversion has been formally approved.

PhD routes

Four-year PhD

1 year to obtain Master qualification + up to 4 years to complete PhD = 5 years (full time); up to 9 years part time

This is the recommended route for students with little research experience.

Includes as its first year the MSc in Educational Research. The MSc provides research training required for carrying out research in the PhD phase of the programme. The dissertation for the MSc phase of the the four year PhD comprises a detaisled research plan for your doctoral study. You will start working with your PhD supervisor from term 2 of the MSc year and so will be well advanced by the time you progress to year 2.

Progression from the MSc to the PHD is dependent on achieving 60% as an average mark overall but this should include an individual mark of 60% for the dissertation; this progression requirement  is in place of the upgrade required to progress from MPhil to PhD on the three year route.



Up to 4 years to complete full time; up to 7 years part time

With this route, you register for an MPhil and follow up to 2 MSc research training modules without undertaking assessment, according to previous experience. Also during this time you work with supervisors on a personal research programme and submit a conversion paper (research plan) which, if successful, allows you to transfer from the MPhil to a PhD.

PhD direct entry

Up to 4 years to complete full time; up to 7 years part time

This is only available for students who have already completed our MSc in Educational Research or a similar programme and may apply to register directly onto the three-year PhD.