Prospective PhD Students



Research degrees

The School aims to provide a stimulating and nurturing environment for postgraduate research. We are privileged to include many academics of the highest national and international research reputation, encompassing a wide range of fields from French, German and Russian Studies, Iberian and Latin American Studies, Linguistics and Film Studies to Literary and Cultural Studies, Modern Critical Theory and Cultural Theory, History of Ideas and Modern Continental Philosophy. Our pages on research clusters include information on how departments of the School performed in the last Research Assessment Exercise and links to departmental staff and their research interests.

We receive financial support for projects from sources including AHRC, the ESRC and the Leverhulme Trust, and a number of staff members are fellows of the Royal Society of Arts, the AHRC Peer Review College, the British Academy and the Association of Art Historians respectively. Our postgraduate students enjoy the use of the facilities provided by the Arts Research Centre, and the Lock-keeper's Cottage Graduate Centre.

Prospective research students are welcome to approach the School at any time in the academic year. You are strongly advised to consult a potential supervisor with a draft research proposal, or the appropriate Graduate Studies Convenor for your chosen subject area within the School, before making a formal application.  (If your research is based in linguistics, once you have identified a potential supervisor whose research profile makes them the best fit for your own research, you will need to submit an Applicant Query Form before making a formal application). We are happy to discuss research proposals and to provide advice both on academic matters and on possible sources of funding. We are open to proposals for research within individual departments and also to proposals requiring co-supervision, either within the School or involving other Schools in the Faculty.

Research degree programmes available thoughout Queen Mary are listed on the College website. Information shown for each programme will contain a link to the online application form specific to that programme.



Research studentships

The competition for research studentships is now closed for 2015/16 entry.

The School welcomes applications to be considered for the following awards for 2015/16 entry:

Further information on areas for potential PhD research can be found in the postgraduate pages of each departmental website.

Your application for admission will also be considered for a studentship.
The application deadline for all Research Studentships for 2015/16 entry is 31st January 2015.
Candidates whose applications are received after the deadline will be considered for admission, but not for funding.




Research training

The School of Languages, Linguistics and Film delivers a research training programme compulsory for students on all MA programmes in the School, dealing with time management, IT and the choice of essay and dissertation topics. Research students are also encouraged to attend these sessions.

The Centre for Academic and Professional Development at Queen Mary delivers research training and development opportunities to all research students in such areas as dissertation management (i.e., how to finish on time), academic publishing, research ethics, knowledge transfer, funding your research, and developing an academic career.



How to apply

Application process
You may apply at any time of the year. However, if you intend to begin your PhD at the start of the academic year in September, which we recommend, you should aim to submit your application before August, (unless you are also applying for funding when you may need to apply much earlier).

Application Checklist

Application Form: please complete the online application and upload the following supporting documents:

Reference Letters: you will need to obtain two reference letters, at least one of which must be an academic reference. Please note, we do not request references and you will need to do this yourself. It is preferred that reference letters be uploaded and submitted with your application. They can alternatively be sent to Research Admissions.

Please make sure that references adhere to the formatting below: 

References should be endorsed by an appropriate institution/company official stamp or on official institution/company letterhead if they are submitted or forwarded from you in electronic or in paper format. 

If your referee would like to keep their reference confidential and will email your reference to us, we can only accept it if it is sent from a university email address. References from a personal email address such as 'Yahoo' or 'Hotmail' are not acceptable. 

If the reference is emailed or sent via post, the admissions team will match and upload your reference to the online application. Please ensure your referees include your full name and application number where possible.

Degree Transcripts/Certificates: you should include those that you have already obtained. If you need to post these, please provide copies, not the original documents. If these documents are in a language other than English, a certified translation must also be provided.

English Language Proficiency: overseas applicants from non-English speaking countries should provide evidence of proficiency in English.

Research proposal: (1,500 words) which should begin with a provisional title for your project. Writing a research proposal.

Writing sample in English: (flexible word length, but maximum 10,000 words).

Personal statement in which we recommend that you include:

  • Why you would like to undertake a PhD in your discipline.
  • Why Queen Mary is the right place for you to undertake this research.
  • What ethical issues you will need to consider in undertaking this research.
  • What research training and professional preparation you have already received.
  • What further training you think you will need to complete a PhD.




English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you will need to provide evidence of your proficiency in English. The College's preferred test is the International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) and the School will normally require a score of at least 7.0, plus 7.0 in the writing element. Further details and a table showing how the IELTS compares with scores of other tests which are accepted by the College for entry can be found on the College website for English Language Requirements.



Enrolment and Induction

Enrolment for 2015/16 takes place in September (date to be announced). Once you are in receipt of an offer, have accepted your place online and met any conditions set, instructions for online pre-enrolment will be sent to you by the Research Degrees Office from August. You will then need to complete your enrolment in person. If it is not possible to confirm your place in time for enrolment in September, or if you intend to begin your PhD at any other time of the year, you will be sent pre-enrolment instructions in time for one of the next available enrolment slots which are set on the first working day of each month.

A College Induction Event and School Induction Meeting will be held for all new PhD students (details to be announced in the summer of 2015).



Further information

Please visit the Doctoral College website.
More information is available on the College website for admissions, accommodation, fees, fundinginternational students and open events or to order the Postgraduate Prospectus.

For more information about applying for postgraduate study in the School, please contact:
Postgraduate Studies
Tel: +44 20 7882 8332