Applying for a PhD - Information, Guidance & Advice |
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Applying for a PhD

PhD applications are different to other university courses. For one thing, you won’t be applying to a course.

To apply for a PhD you’ll need to show that you’re the right candidate to fill an advertised position, or complete a research project that you designed and proposed yourself.

The articles here are designed to help you do that.

We've explained how PhD interviews work (and previewed some of the questions you might be asked). We've also looked at common postgraduate entry tests and provided some advice on eligibility criteria for doctoral research.

All that's left is to wish you good luck. So. . . good luck!


Writing a good PhD proposal

From what to include to how to structure it: learn how to succeed with one of the most important parts of a PhD application.

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Contacting supervisors

It can be a good idea to discuss your PhD application or project ideas with potential supervisors.

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PhD interviews

Interviews can be a key stage in the PhD selection process. Learn what's involved and prepare for common questions.

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PhD personal statements

What should you cover and how? Make the best impression with a strong personal statement for your PhD application.

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PhD applications in STEM

Learn how to apply for a PhD in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics subjects.

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PhD applications in AHSS

Learn how to apply for a PhD in Arts, Humanities and Social Science subjects.

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CVs for PhD applications

How should you go about preparing an academic CV for your PhD application? Read our advice.

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Academic cover letters

Your covering letter will be the first part of your application that your readers see. Here's how to make it stand out.

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Choosing references

The right academic references can significantly strengthen your PhD application. Learn how to choose and approach referees.

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PhD entry requirements

Are you sufficiently qualified and prepared for doctoral research? It's worth checking your eligibility before you apply. . .

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PhD application tips

Some general tips and advice for putting together a successful PhD application.

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PhD application step-by-step

Make sure you haven't missed any key parts of your PhD application with our handy checklist.

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PhD entry tests

Some PhD applications may require an entry test such as the GRE, GMAT or others. Find out what they involve.

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Qualification equivalencies

Planning on studying an international PhD? This guide explains how different countries' qualifications compare for PhD entry.

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International applications

Read specific advice for applying for a PhD as an international student.

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Application blogs

Read more PhD application tips and student stories on our blog.

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Last Updated: 05 February 2021