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University of Liverpool - School of the Arts

About the Programme

The University of Liverpool's School of the Arts (SoTA) draws together a unique set of research and teaching expertise found across five departments in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences:

• Architecture
• Communication and Media
• English
• Music
• Philosophy

The School of the Arts is a place to engage your imagination, sharpen your analysis and enhance your understanding of the world around you.

Our postgraduate research programme in the School of the Arts (SotA) is committed to educating scholars who will lead in their fields of research with outstanding intellectual skills and will carry forward distinctive research with opportunities to engage with the arts, culture, heritage and design scene in Liverpool and beyond. The generation of new knowledge and understanding through creative practice, scholarship and criticism is central to our research. A particular strength of our PhD programmes lie in our collaborative engagement with our key cultural, commercial, public and third design sector partners with a keen interest in both theoretical and practice-led research.

We invite applications to join our team of over 150 postgraduate research students and 150 active research staff, from candidates who have, or expect to graduate with, a good Masters level qualifications to undertake doctoral studies at the University. We particularly welcome applications in:

Architecture: areas of research expertise include architectural history, urban history, architecture and the visual arts, acoustics, digital architecture and sustainable environments.
Communication and Media: areas of research expertise include political communication, political, independent and alternative American cinema, gender and media, media and human rights, media discourse, global entertainment industries, broadcasting and public interest media and media and gender and stardom and celebrity.
English: areas of research expertise include literature, language, and creative writing.
Music: areas of research expertise include Popular music, Composition and technology, Analysis, aesthetics and psychology.
Philosophy: areas of research expertise include Metaphysics, Language and Mind, Religion, Ethics and Practical Philosophy, Aesthetics, Art and Literature.

We actively engage with Liverpool's rich arts, culture and heritage scene, with many of the city's key players including the Tate, Liverpool Philharmonic and National Museums Liverpool collaborating with us on teaching and research.
We hold a range of events to address research and teaching outputs, areas of interest, careers advice and much more. Through our events we aim to reach out to our students, alumni, staff, employers and interested parties to engage with us.
Through our activities we aim to achieve our goal of inspiring, supporting and developing people who can think for themselves, imagine the future and shape the world.
Our PGR students are provided with a comprehensive package of formal supervision, support and training, as well as high quality study space in our newly refurbished Graduate School at 19-23 Abercromby Square, including conference spaces, library facilities and seminar rooms that every member of the School can call their own.

We also operate LiNK, a programme that “links” postgraduate students from across ten departments with cultural and creative industry partners to engage in collaborative partnerships sponsored by the University of Liverpool. LiNK offers tailor-made short-term placement, training and networking opportunities for PhD students to gain real-life and career enhancing skills as part of their doctoral programme.

To learn more about the School of the Arts at the University of Liverpool and to find out more about the research interests of our staff then please visit:


Funding Notes

Some or all of the PhD opportunities in this programme have funding attached. Applications for this programme are welcome from suitably qualified candidates worldwide. Funding may only be available to a limited set of nationalities and you should read the full programme details for further information.

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