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University of Bedfordshire

PhDs available in world-leading research with direct societal, economic and cultural impact

The University of Bedfordshire is home to world-leading research with direct societal, economic and cultural impact. This is recognised in the UK-wide 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), and includes major areas of research such as advancing medical knowledge of serious and chronic disease, substance misuse, language assessment, and robotics technology that supports independent living. The REF recognises the University’s research success in both quality and quantity:

  • We have more than doubled our proportion of world-leading research;
  • Nearly half of our research is considered world leading or internationally excellent;
  • Three times as many University researchers were submitted compared to the previous assessment in 2008;
  • We have world leading research in 9 units of assessment - up from just 5 in 2008;
  • The number of staff judged to be world-leading or internationally excellent in research outputs has quadrupled.
University of Bedfordshire

Research Degrees

The University awards the following research degrees:

  • Master of Arts by Research
  • Master of Science by Research
  • Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
  • Professional Doctorates

Programmes of research may be undertaken in any field of study in which the University is able to provide appropriate supervision.

Specialist research areas which enjoy an international and national reputation include:

  • Applied social studies
  • Social work
  • Health services
  • Media and new technologies
  • Computer graphics and medical visualisation
  • Human computer interaction
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Materials and manufacture
  • Electrical and electronic engineering
  • Civil engineering
  • Business and management
  • English language assessment
  • Biomedicine
  • Cryobiology
  • Bioenvironmental sciences
  • Sport and physical activity
  • Education

There are currently around 450 research students in the University. These are distributed between ten research institutes.

University of Bedfordshire

Support for Postgraduate Research Students

Postgraduate research students and their supervisors are supported by the Research Graduate School (RGS), which coordinates the quality assurance and administrative arrangements for all students on research degree programmes. It is also responsible for the provision of generic research skills development training aligned with the four quadrants of the Vitae Researcher Development Framework. In addition, discipline-specific training is provided by the Research Institutes. All sessions are delivered face-to-face and online. The Research Skills Development Programme is delivered three times during the academic year.

The RGS works closely with research institutes to ensure that all students have appropriate support throughout their studies and access to training and development programmes that will complement their research and provide a foundation for their future careers.

For more information on our research degrees, application process, etc. please email